Remembering Ray Bradbury

Writer Ray Bradbury delivers a lecture at the 12th Annual L.A. Times Festival of Books at Royce Hall on the UCLA campus on April 28, 2007 in Los Angeles, Calif. Bradbury passed away today at age 91. He was more than just a science fiction writer.

This final note, a remembrance of Ray Bradbury who died today at 91. You can't really just call him a science fiction writer. More social commentator, really, on our collective anxiety about what new technology might do. He's still best known for "Fahrenheit 451," about book burning in a distant America. He talked to Queena Kim, our tech reporter, a couple of years ago about how that book came to be.

Ray Bradbury: I was wandering around UCLA, I heard typing in the basement of the library and there were 12 students typing for 10 cents a half-hour. So I got a bag of diamonds...

Queena Kim: Did you say you brought in a bag of diamonds?

Bradbury: Dimes! I moved into the typing room and I wrote "Fahrenheit 451" in nine days.

"Fahrenheit 451," "The Illustrated Man," "The Martian Chronicles," and a whole lot more.

Bradbury: I'm not a short story writer, I'm a magician. I can make you believe anything that I tell you. I know how to live forever, so help me god.

About the author

Kai Ryssdal is the host and senior editor of Marketplace, the most widely heard program on business and the economy in the country.


I agree to American Public Media's Terms and Conditions.
With Generous Support From...

Sustainability Coverage

  • The Kendeda Fund
  • Wealth & Poverty Coverage

  • The Ford Foundation