Philip José Farmer

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Philip Jose Farmer
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(January 26, 1918 – February 25, 2009)

Philip José Farmer, a United States pro writer, was born and lived much of his life in Peoria, Illinois, and is best known for his World of Tiers and Riverworld novels. He is noted for the pioneering use of sexual and religious themes in his work, his fascination for, and reworking of, the lore of celebrated pulp heroes.

Leslie Fiedler compared Farmer to Ray Bradbury as both being "provincial American eccentrics" ... who... "strain at the classic limits of the science fiction form", but found Farmer distinctive in that he "manages to be at once naive and sophisticated in his odd blending of theology, pornography, and adventure".

He was GoH at the 1968 Worldcon, Baycon. His GoH speech is one of the most memorable ever ... but not in a very good way. There was a heat wave, the hotel was not air-conditioned and his speech was very long -- some listeners swear that the seasons changed before it ended -- and as Fred Pohl remembers, he spent a chunk of the speech denouncing John W. Campbell -- who was present at the banquet.

Though he did not begin as a fan, he was a fannish pro. He was a regular attendee at Worldcon and at Midwestcon starting in the early ’50s with Midwestcon 2 and continuing almost until his death. There was a local gathering in his honor in Peoria, Farmercon; a club, the Philip Jose Farmer Society; and fanzines such as Farmerphile

He wrote one book, Venus on the Half Shell (1974), under the penname Kilgore Trout, a character in several Kurt Vonnegut novels. The writer behind the pseudonym was a matter of huge speculation in fandom at the time. Vonnegut had given Farmer permission, but was reportedly unhappy afterward.

Awards, Honors and GoHships:

Person Website 19182009
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