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March 22, 2008


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Thank you for mentioning my site. And for this very good post.

Bryan Alexander

Thank you, Tinkoo. Keep on blogging.


So I finally got here. I'd been reluctant, because his death hit me pretty hard as well, and because I knew I had more mourning to do. But the earth still orbits the sun, and I move with it agreeably, and so I come here.

This is a fine and very moving essay, a loving encomium and a memorial that evokes presence wonderfully well.

Clarke was huge for me in my late childhood and adolescence. It won't surprise you that my experience of the ending of 2001 the film was exactly the same as yours: it made perfect sense; hadn't people read the book? I still love "The Nine Billion Names of God." "The Sentinel" still works for me. I always liked the little-known "A Fall of Moondust" for some reason--probably because Clarke mingled science and drama in truly intoxicating proportions.

You've brilliantly captured the snap and drive of his prose, as well as his seemingly effortless guidance of young, avid minds. He was indeed a great teacher. It would be interesting to analyze one or two of his works from this point of view. How did he find that zone of proximal development?

Some other writers go deeper for me: Cordwainer Smith, Alfred Bester, Clifford D. Simak (SF's true pastoral artist). But Clarke gave me so many pleasures at once: NASA, Hemingway, the movies, the Radio Shack 50-in-1 project set I still own (ah for the days of making AM transmitters on that breadboard--happy days indeed). A compleat SF artist.

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