Sunday, August 10, 2008

Featured Pipe Smoker: Roger Zelazny

Roger Zelazny (1937-1995)

"I took out the pipe with which I was sometimes wont to amuse myself..."

Roger Zelazny was born in Euclid, Ohio. He attended college at Western Reserve University, from which he graduated with a B.A. in English in 1959. He then went to Columbia University in New York, specialized in Elizabethan and Jacobean drama, and graduated with an M.A. in 1962.

Zelazny wrote numerous books and short stories of fantasy and science fiction, often skillfully blurring the lines between the two, sometimes using scientific explanations for how magic worked in the worlds he created.

He is perhaps most well-known for his series of ten books called The Chronicles of Amber. In this series, the city of Amber is the only true reality, and all other places and times are merely reflections and shadows of Amber itself. Members of the family who rule Amber are able to travel through all the myriad dimensions, or shadows, by exerting their will, although it takes time and concentration to do so. The main character and first-person narrator of the first five books is Corwin, Prince of Amber. The second five books are told by Corwin's son Merlin. Both are on a couple of occasions mentioned to be pipe smokers.

Zelazny also co-wrote a book called Deus Irae with another of my favorite authors, Philip K. Dick.

1 comment:

  1. Hello! I found your site by googling "Roger Zelazny's pipes". I was and will remain one of Zelazny's greatest fans; and, having recently taken up the pipe - not as a passion, but only as an occasional weekend diversion, I grew curious about what might have become of the pipes in Zelazny's estate.

    I didn't expect to find anything like "The Briar Files"!

    I hope other Zelazny fans find your tribute. I'll certainly spread the word among my friends.

    Deirdre (my real name)