Massively cool author of a collection of "juvenile" sci-fi books. Most of the ones I've read have main characters which are young men, 14-18 years old, who end up getting involved in some abnormality or technological alteration of space-time that they've somehow stumbled upon. I daresay he might be something of a Neo-luddite, and he certainly seems to have a fascination with dualism. Sleator's books were intriguing when I was in 4th grade, and I find upon re-reading them now that they're a refreshing change from the kind of literature that "educated college folk" such as myself are supposed to read. They have cute little story lines, complete with happy endings and interesting ways of looking at reality, and they only take a couple of hours to read.

Sleator's works include*:

* probably reverse chronological order, certainly as they're listed inside Others See Us

William Sleator was born on February 13, 1945, in Maryland. He was one of four kids - one of his brothers is named Tycho (and is now the president of the Internet Chess Club). William wrote his first story when he was six. "Once there was a fat cat. Boy was she fat. Well, not that fat. But pretty fat."

From then on, he wrote. His work was usually dark and macabre - his story "The Haunted Easter Egg," his musical composition "Guillotines in the Springtime." He doesn't come off as having been a particularly morbid little kid; this is just what he liked.

He went to Harvard, where he was miserable, and would later realize (after graduation) what a waste of time college had been, since he really wanted to study dance and piano theory.

After graduation, he spent a year in England, studying musical composition and working as a pianist for the Royal Ballet School. He lived in the middle of a dark forest in an ancient cottage which had once been a "pest house" for people with smallpox. This would become the creepy setting for his young adult novel, Blackbriar. It was accepted by the second editor who read it, and suddenly William was an author.

His second book, Run, was also based around a house he was living in at the time. After this, he realized he was going to have to make something up, as the topic of his houses had been exhausted. He turned to science fiction and never gave it up.   "I shouldn't ever run out of ideas - knock on wood - since the universe is full of great things like strange attractors and the Mandelbrot set. "

He worked with the Boston Ballet for nine years, touring with them as a rehearsal pianist all over theUS and Europe, and composing three ballets that the company performed. He constantly took notes on everything - how dancers talk to each other, how different members of the company are treated by those in charge, and the inevitable anecdotes of dancers falling into the orchestra pit and being squashed by scenery. He hopes to make a book of it.

William's siblings are scientists, and his dad is professor emeritus in cellular biophysics at the University of Michigan.

William currently lives part of the year in Bangkok, and the other part in Boston. He writes full-time, does "a lot of serious cooking," and is currently working on an opera called The Escape Artist.

More Books:

The Beasties


The Boxes

Dangerous Wishes

The Night the Heads Came


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