Greg Bear (1951-2022)

Greg Bear

Five-time Nebula winner Greg Bear died November 19, a week after heart surgery from which he never awoke. A CT scan showed stroke damage was caused to many parts of the brain by clots that had been hiding in a false lumen of the anterior artery to the brain ever since an earlier surgery eight years ago. After a review of the possible outcomes by the medical team, and following the wishes expressed in his advance directive, Bear was taken off life support and died two hours later.

The author of over 50 books, Bear’s novels won Nebulas for Moving Mars (1995) and Darwin’s Radio. Three other works of short fiction won Nebulas, and two of those – “Blood Music” (1984) and “Tangents” (1987) — also won the Hugo.

Bear’s writing was very successful in translation, too. He twice won Japan’s Seiun Award, as well as the Ignotus Award (Spain), and Prix Apollo (France). Altogether his works have been translated into 19 languages.

Bear sold his first short story, “Destroyers”, to Famous Science Fiction at age 15, and along with high-school friends helped found San Diego Comic-Con.

He also published work as an artist at the beginning of his career, including illustrations for an early version of the Star Trek Concordance, and covers for Galaxy and F&SF. He was a founding member of the Association of Science Fiction Artists. He even created the cover for his novel, Psychlone, a 1988 reprint from Tor.

In 1983 he married Astrid Anderson. They have two children, Chloe born in 1986, and Alexandra, born in 1990.

He was a guest of honor at the 2001 Worldcon, Millennium Philcon.

He served as President of SFWA from 1988 to 1990.

A resident of the Pacific Northwest, he was eligible for and won the first Endeavour Award in 1999 for Dinosaur Summer – and won it again the following year for Darwin’s Radio.

Bear participated in Sigma, a kind of think tank where science fiction writers share insights about the future with agencies laying real-world plans, twice making national news as one of the group’s representatives to Department of Homeland Security conferences.

Bear’s career honors include San Diego Comic-Con’s Inkpot Award (1984), the Robert A. Heinlein Award (2006) presented by the Heinlein Society, and the Los Angeles Science Fantasy Society’s Forry Award (2017).

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