Howard Waldrop (1946-2024) – Locus Online


Author Howard Waldrop, 77, died January 15, 2024. Waldrop was one of our most accomplished and celebrated authors of short fiction, known for his erudite, playful, and allusive work. His most famous story, “The Ugly Chickens” (1980), won World Fantasy and Nebula Awards, and was a Hugo Award finalist.

Waldrop’s first work of genre interest was “Lunchbox” in Analog (1972), and he went on to publish scores of stories, including seven Nebula Award finalists and eight Hugo Award nominees. His stories were collected in Howard Who? (1986), All About Strange Monsters of the Recent Past (1987), Night of the Cooters (1990), Going Home Again (1997), Dream Factories and Radio Pictures (2001), Heart of Whitenesse (2005), The Horse of a Different Color (That You Rode in On) / The King of Where-I-Go (2006), Things Will Never Be the Same: A Howard Waldrop Reader: Selected Short Fiction 1980-2005 (2007), Other Worlds, Better Lives: A Howard Waldrop Reader: Selected Long Fiction 1989-2003 (2008), and Horse of a Different Color (2013). Custer’s Last Jump and Other Collaborations (2003) features stories he cowrote with others, and some of his early work was collected in H’ard Starts: The Early Waldrop (2023).

He wrote two novels, collaborative SF The Texas-Israeli War: 1999 (1974, with Jake Saunders) and alternate history/time-travel tale Them Bones (1984). A Dozen Tough Jobs (1989) is a novella retelling the Labors of Hercules set in 1920s Mississippi.

Waldrop was born September 15, 1946 in Houston, Mississippi, but spent most of his life in Texas, and much of his writing was set in the American South and Southwest. He was a member of the Turkey City Writing Workshop, and taught at the Clarion Writers Workshop. Waldrop was a beloved and major figure in the Texas writing community, and was famous for his hilarious readings at conventions.

In 2021, he received a World Fantasy Award for Life Achievement.

For more, see his entry in The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction.


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