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Ray Bradbury Essay Research Paper No name

Ray Bradbury Essay, Research Paper

No name typifies science fiction to the American public more than the name Ray

Bradbury. For over forty years, he has been writing novels, short stories, poems, plays,

and movie scripts that have long since kept him in the forefront of American literature.

His stories become standard reading for many high school and college students.

His literary style can best be described as “enchantment;” the way he captivates

his readers with charm, bewitchment, and stunning verbal evocations. His visions of the

past, future, and the present delight his readers. His books are virtually long-time

bestsellers and have been translated into over twenty languages. He is quite popular in

the former Soviet Union. However, success did not come easily for Bradbury. He

inched away at his writing career, crafting story after story, until he was selling and

occasional short story for half a cent per word. Much of his childhood, and a little of his

adulthood, inspired his writings. In this paper, these influences as well as his method of

drawing the reader into a story will be discussed.

Perhaps the most important influence in Bradbury’s youth was his discovery of

magic. The famous Blackstone the Magician once included Bradbury in his act, and it

enchanted him. The most influential magician on Bradbury was Mr. Electrico. Bradbury

wrote about his experience with Mr. Electrico and stated that Mr. Electrico would sit

every night in his electric chair, brushing his Excalibur sword over the audience, sparking

them with lightning, and crying, “Live forever!” A few weeks after Bradbury

encountered Mr. Electrico, he began writing his first short stories.

In July of 1941, Bradbury sold his first story to Super Science Stories. Although

he only made $13.75 on the sale, he rejoiced. Within a year from that sale, he was a

full-time writer. The Martian Chronicles, his first novel, was published within a decade

and he soon found himself famous. Fahrenheit 451 marked a new point in Bradbury’s

writing style – the pessimistic side of life, where he discussed a future where mankind is

slowly destroying itself.

The sense of what is best in America and what is best for the American people

and humanity as a whole, is another thing that fuels his literature. He writes on topics

relevant to what is happening in society. Mars and book burning are a couple of them.

The burning of books would be related not directly to book burning, but rather is one of

the most powerful anti -censorship writings of its time.

The optimism expressed in his writings inspires the human race to reach new

limits. The Martian Chronicles speak of a journey to Mars. Today, people are striving to

go to Mars. The Final Frontier, according to Bradbury, is “the wilderness of space.”

Therefore, he likes to focus on stories based outside the atmosphere of Earth. One story,

“The Fire Balloons,” talks about two priests that debate whether or not native blue-fire

balls have souls. In a story called “The Man” Jesus leaves a distant planet the day before

an Earth rocket lands. In his poem “Christus Apollo,” he states that “Christ wanders in

the Universe/ A flesh of stars.” It is evident from these examples that he brings the

familiar world of the church into the unfamiliar environment of distant planets and the

rest of outer space. This effect gives the reader some familiarity with the story, and

allows him to be drawn deeper into it. Bradbury’s writings about space inspired one

Apollo astronaut to name a crater on the moon, the Dandelion Crater, after his novel

Dandelion Wine.

The most influential factor to Bradbury’s writings, as well as those of any author,

is the expanse of his or her imagination. Evidently, limits have not yet been found in

Bradbury’s. His imagination transports his readers through time and space to amazing

worlds that we are unfamiliar with. Through his stories, we become familiarized with

them. The Martian Chronicles and Fahrenheit 451 depend on complex interrelationships

between time, setting, place, character, and dialogue. Each of these elements is pulled

from the depths of Bradbury’s imagination and given to the reader to imagine.

Much of Bradbury’s famous novel writing develops from short story ideas.

Fahrenheit 451 was originally a short story titled “The Fireman,” published in 1951 in

Galaxy Science Fiction. Quite often Bradbury composes large novels from short stories

in 20 days of high-speed writing. However, his drafts require little line editing. He is

very careful in choosing words, and his vocabulary paints a picture of his novel so that

the reader can become more involved with the story.

Bradbury’s use of metaphors – which, according to him, are a method used for

comprehending one reality and expressing it in terms of another – is a vital part of his

literary style. He uses metaphors to permit the reader to view what the author is saying.

Bradbury’s writings in general can be described as a metaphor of generalized nostalgia;

that is, he writes not merely for the past but also for the future.

Today, after forty years of writing and countless poems, novels, stories, plays, and

scripts, Ray Bradbury remains one of the most popular American writers. He is a very

common sight in the lecture circuit. Bradbury has captured the past, present, and future

of our society, in amazing and intricate stories that perhaps no other writer will ever be

able to duplicate. His writings will continue to enchant the people of the future as much

as it has enchanted people for the past forty years.