On this week’s podcast we will focus on the life and times of Ray Douglas Bradbury born August 22, 1920. He was an author, screenwriter, and one of the most celebrated 20th-century creators of amazing stories. Bradbury was mainly known for his short-story collections The Martian Chronicles (1950) and The Illustrated Man (1951). Most of his best known work is speculative fiction, but he also worked in other genres, such as the coming of age novel Dandelion Wine (1957) and the fictionalized memoir Green Shadows, White Whale (1992). He also wrote and consulted on screenplays and television scripts, including Moby Dick and It Came from Outer Space. Many of his works were adapted into television and film productions as well as comic books.
Here are some little known facts about Ray Bradbury:
- He was given the middle name “Douglas” after the actor Douglas Fairbanks.
- He was a descendant of Mary Bradbury, who was tried in Salem witch trials in 1692.
- Bradbury attended Los Angeles High School and often roller-skated through Hollywood in hopes of meeting celebrities.
- Bradbury’s first pay as a writer was at age 14. He wrote a joke he sold to George Burns to use on the Burns and Allen radio show.
- At the age of 25, Bradbury finally summoned up the courage to ask a girl out for the first time ever. She was a bookstore clerk named Maggie, who thought he was stealing from the bookstore because he had a long trench coat on.
- Not only did Bradbury never get a driver’s license, he didn’t believe in cars for anyone.
- Though he wrote Fahrenheit 451 at UCLA, he wasn’t a student there. In fact, he didn’t believe in college. “I believe in libraries because most students don’t have any money,” Bradbury told The New York Times in 2009. “When I graduated from high school, it was during the Depression and we had no money. I couldn’t go to college, so I went to the library three days a week for 10 years.”
- A fitting memorial came when NASA landed a rover on Mars a few months after Bradbury’s death in 2012. They named the site where Mars rover Curiosity touched down “Bradbury Landing.”
On the program this week you we hear his view on life, the universe, and everything. Yes, I kind of stole that from Douglas Adams, but I am sure he won’t mind. I try to tie in all of our stories, including those from you guys, back to Bradbury and I think you will enjoy the result.
You can listen to this podcast on Thursday at Ron’s Amazing Stories, download it from Apple Podcasts, stream it on Stitcher Radio or on the mobile version of Spotify. Do you prefer the radio? We are heard every Thursday at 10:00 pm and Sunday Night at 11:00 PM (EST) on AMFM247.COM. Check your local listing or find the station closest to you at this link