Prolific American Science Fiction novelist, short story writer and essayist Philip K Dick sadly passed away on March 2, 1982. Born December 16, 1928 he explored sociological, political and metaphysical themes in his novels which were dominated by monopolistic corporations, authoritarian governments, and altered states. In his later works Dick’s thematic focus strongly reflected his personal interest in metaphysics and theology. He often drew upon his own life experiences in addressing the nature of drug abuse, paranoia, schizophrenia, and transcendental experiences in novels such as A Scanner Darkly and VALIS. The novel The Man in the High Castle bridged the genres of alternate history and science fiction, earning Dick a Hugo Award for Best Novel in 1963. Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said, a novel about a celebrity who awakens in a parallel universe where he is unknown, won the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for best novel in 1975. “I want to write about people I love, and put them into a fictional world spun out of my own mind, not the world we actually have, because the world we actually have does not meet my standards,”
In addition to 44 published novels, Dick also wrote approximately 121 short stories, most of which appeared in science fiction magazines during his lifetime. Although Dick spent most of his career as a writer in near-poverty. Many popular films based on his novels, have also been made, including Blade Runner, Total Recall, A Scanner Darkly, Minority Report, Paycheck, Next, Screamers, and The Adjustment Bureau, and there is also talk of a Blade Runner sequel starring Harrison Ford. In 2005, Time magazine named Ubik one of the one hundred greatest English-language novels published since 1923. In 2007, Dick also became the first science fiction writer to be included in The Library of America series and has left a rich legacy of Science Fiction novels.