Fredric Brown


Fredric Brown (1906 1972) was an American science fiction and mystery writer.  He is perhaps best known for his use of humor and for his mastery of the "short short" form—stories of 1 to 3 pages, often with ingenious plotting devices and surprise endings. Humor and a somewhat postmodern outlook carried over into his novels as well. Brown was often called "the O. Henry of science fiction."

His classic science fiction novel What Mad Universe (1949) is a parody of pulp SF story conventions. The novel functions both as a critique of its genre and a superior example of it. It may have provided a model for Philip K. Dick when he later created his own stories set in alternate personal realities. Martians, Go Home (1955) is both a broad farce and a satire on human frailties as seen through the eyes of a billion jeering, invulnerable Martians who arrive not to conquer the world but to drive it crazy.  One of his most famous short stories, "Arena," was used as the basis for an episode of Star Trek of the same name. It was also the basis of a 1964 The Outer Limits episode entitled "Fun and Games," and possibly the Blake's 7 episode, 'Duel.'



From LibriVox.Org:

1.  Earthman Bearing Gifts  (4th story in Sci Fi Collection 18)   First published in the June 1960 issue of Galaxy magazine. “Mars had gifts to offer and Earth had much in return—if delivery could be arranged!”

2.  Hall of Mirrors  (2nd story in Sci Fi Collection 25)  It is a tough decision to make--whether to give up your life so you can live it over again!

3.  Keep Out  (5th story in Sci Fi Collection 27)  With no more room left on Earth, and with Mars hanging up there empty of life, somebody hit on the plan of starting a colony on the Red Planet. It meant changing the habits and physical structure of the immigrants, but that worked out fine. In fact, every possible factor was covered--except one of the flaws of human nature....

4.  Two Timer  (10th story in Sci Fi Collection 27)  Here is a brace of vignettes ... short and sharp ... like a hypodermic!

5.  Happy Ending  (2nd story in Sci Fi Collection 22)  A world had collapsed around this man—a world that would never shout his praises again. The burned-out cities were still and dead, the twisted bodies and twisted souls giving him their last salute in death. And now he was alone, alone surrounded by memories, alone and waiting 

6.  Earthmen Bearing Gifts  (5th story from short sci fi collection # 37) 

7.  Experiment by Fredric Brown  (3rd story in Short Science Fiction Collection 051)


Misc Sites:

1.  Honeymoon in Hell  [go down to Fredric Brown]  Male creation prevention abduction hypnosis

2.  The Last Martian  [go down to Fredric Brown]  Guy walks into a bar, and tells a reporter he's the last surviving Martian. This episode of X Minus One originally aired on August 7, 1956. 

3Knock  The last man on earth sat alone in a room. There was a knock on the door....

4.  Arena    Originally published in the June 1944 issue of Astounding Science Fiction magazine this tale was first adapted as an episode of the original Outer Limits in 1964, then in 1967 for the original Star Trek television series (the infamous “Gorn” episode), and even as a comic in Marvel Comics magazine Unknown Worlds of Science Fiction in 1976.

5. Seeing Ear Theater – Knock - Go to 21st audio

6.  25 - Mindwebs-771014 - The Weapon & The Castaway -Fredric Brown & Charles E. Fritch

9.  HYPNOBOBS... Naturally - Henry Blodgett is a terrible math student and knows he’ll fail his upcoming geometry exam. But as a student of black magic he may have found a way out! First published in the September 1954 issue of Beyond Fantasy Fiction