Octavia E. Butler
(1947-2006)

Every story I write adds to me a little, changes me a little, forces me to reexamine an attitude or belief, causes me to research and learn, helps me to understand people and grow...Every story I create, creates me. I write to create myself.
—Octavia E. Butler

Born in 1947 in Pasadena, California, Octavia E. Butler is the first published African-American female science fiction writer. She is widely recognized and critically acclaimed, while introducing the African-American and feminist perspective into the genre. Her work has been described as "both fascinating and highly unusual; character development, human relationships, and social concerns predominate over intergalactic hardware".

Bored with the required reading in the elementary school curriculum, she immersed herself in reading beyond Dick and Jane. Octavia explored many subjects but got hooked on science fiction. However, although intrigued by the genre, it became apparent to her that it was white- and male-oriented. She noted the dearth of black characters and the stereotypical portrayal of women. Also, she noticed the elevation of machinery over human values. Despite these observations, her initial stories embraced this perspective.

Graduating from Pasadena City College, she subsequently attended California State University in Los Angeles and the University of California at Los Angeles, but she asserts that she developed her writing skills in non-academic programs, particularly the Open Door Program for the Screen Writers Guild of America and the Clarion Science Fiction Writers' Workshop. Her attendance at the latter provided the breakthrough that, over time, led to the publication of her first short story, Crossover. Continued
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List of Works

Kindred (1979)
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Bloodchild (Collection, 1995)
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Fledgling (2005)
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Earthseed
Parable of the Sower (1995)
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Parable of the Talents (1998, Winner of the Nebula award, Best Novel)
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Xenogenesis Series
Dawn (1987)
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Adulthood Rites (1988)
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Imago (1989)
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Lilith's Brood (Omnibus, 2000)
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Patternist Series
Patternmaster (1976)
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Mind of My Mind (1977)
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Survivor (1978)
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Wild Seed (1980)
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Clay's Ark (1984)
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Short Stories
Crossover (1971)
Near of Kin (1979)
Speech Sounds (Winner of the Hugo Award, 1983)
Bloodchild (Winner of the Hugo, the Nebula, and the Locus awards, 1984)
The Evening and the Morning and the Night (1987)

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