Harlan Ellison Says he’s Dying

One of Science Fiction’s interesting characters claims that he is dying and will say goodbye to everyone at the MadCon SF convetion (Madison, Wisconson).

There will be many people who will say “It’s about time!” Harlan is not well liked. He is a very good writer, although probably not as good as he thinks. He is very outspoken and is famous for being obnoxious and insulting.

I am guessing that this is just something that came to Harlan on a whim. We are all dying, just some of us are a little closer to that final event. He may actually be sick, although I hope not. SF needs more color commentary of the kind Harlan Ellison is good at. I hope that he goes on annoying people for many years.

If you don’t recognize the name, Harlan Ellison wrote, among other things, the Star Trek episode “The City on the Edge of Forever”, which, in my opinion, is one of the top 5 Star Trek episodes in the whole franchise. It may be the best, depending on how I am feeling on any one day.

Harlan Ellison wrote many great Short Stories in the 60s and 70s and edited a series of collections called Dangerous Visions. Ellison’s stories and the stories he selected for Dangerous Visions were extremely influential in the genre. Few people can claim to have altered the essence of SF.

It’s too bad he’s such an asshole, even if he is a genius asshole.

At MadCon, an ailing Harlan Ellison will say goodbye – Isthmus | The Daily Page.


  1. Jeanette Jackson wrote:

    Although Ellison is credited with The City on the Edge of Forever, I remember reading that Gene Roddenberry is the one who re-wrote the episode to make it more “Star Trek”. Ellison’s script was not what was shown on TV, but I believe his version won an award and Roddenberry’s version won an award also.

    Wednesday, September 29, 2010 at 10:43 pm | Permalink
  2. Rose Dennis wrote:

    A fitting quick tribute to an important and influential writer in the field, albeit an occasional obnoxious one. He’s a real living treasure. Well beyond the 60’s and 70’s he continued to find success with many more teleplays, stories, and projects. You don’t quite give him his due; there’s a good reason he was given a Grand Master award by both the sci-fi and horror fields! However, he is NOT financially secure at this time in his life, and is worried for what his wife may have to deal with when he’s gone. So he’s just beginning to sell off artifacts from his storied career, and the first and possibly most extraordinary is his genuine first typewriter! It’s up for sale right now, being marketed by a good friend of his, and can be seen at http://www.photographyhistory.com/harlanellisontypewriter.html. Asking price of $40,000 (counter offers are invited) and that’s actually a pretty good estimate when you realize Jack Kerouac’s last typewriter sold for $22,500 in July (he wrote nothing of significance on it) and Cormac McCarthy’s typewriter brought an insane $254,000 at Christies last December! Anyway, this isn’t a joke, the man does need the money, there should certainly be a mess of collectors out there interested in such an important relic of literary history, AND Harlan says he’ll type a page of “something” to leave in the typewriter for the buyer. Wow! Possibly Harlan’s very last scribblings. I don’t think it’s in the news yet. Should be. Definitely spread the word; it’s for the best possible cause. Amazing.

    Tuesday, November 9, 2010 at 9:23 am | Permalink