7 June 1938|
|Died||21 September 1985
|Pen name||Gu Long
Xiong Yaohua (7 June 1938 – 21 September 1985), better known by his pen name Gu Long, is one of the three greatest Wuxia writers in China, as famous as Jin Yong and Liang Yusheng.
He was not only a novelist but also a screenwriter, film producer and director. Xiong is best known for writing wuxia novels and serials, which include Juedai Shuangjiao, Xiaoli Feidao Series, Chu Liuxiang Series, Lu Xiaofeng Series and Xiao Shiyilang. Some of these works have been adapted into films and television series for numerous times. In the 1980s Xiong started his own film studio, Bao Sian, to focus on adaptations of his works. He graduated from Cheng Kung Senior High School in Taipei and from the Foreign Language Department of Tamkang University.
Xiong claimed ancestry from Nanchang, Jiangxi, China. He used to live at Hankou in his childhood. He was born on 7 June 1938 in Hong Kong. (his registered identity claimed that he was born in 1941) He moved to Taipei, Taiwan in 1952 with his parents, who divorced in 1956. With help from friends and money earned from part-time work, Xiong graduated from the Foreign Language Department of Tamkang University. He found a job in the United States Army Advisory in Taipei later.
In 1960 Xiong published his first wuxia novel Cangqiong Shenjian (蒼穹神劍) under the pen name "Gu Long". From 1960 to 1961 Xiong published eight novels but did not achieve the results he desired. He moved to Ruifang Town (瑞芳鎮) and lived there for three years, after which he changed his perspective and adopted a new writing style. Between 1967 and the late 1970s, Xiong rose to prominence in the annals of modern wuxia fiction for his works. As the sole representative of excellence in the wuxia genre from Taiwan for an entire decade, Xiong was named along with Jin Yong and Liang Yusheng as the "Three Legs of the Tripod of Wuxia".
In his university days Xiong lived together with a dance hostess named Zheng Yuexia (鄭月霞) and they had a son called Zheng Xiaolong (鄭小龍). Xiong started a relationship with another dance hostess called Ye Xue (葉雪), who also bore him a son, Ye Yikuan (葉怡寬). Shortly after that, Xiong met a senior middle school graduate named Mei Baozhu (梅寶珠), who became his first legal spouse and bore him his third son Xiong Zhengda (熊正達). Xiong's extramarital affairs with other women caused him to break up with Mei later.
In the later part of his life, Xiong suffered from depression and the quality of his works declined rapidly. He had to employ ghostwriters to co-write many of his later works because of his ailing health. He died on 21 September 1985 at the age of 48, due to illness wrought by alcoholism, namely cirrhosis and esophageal hemorrhage at around six in the evening. At Xiong's funeral his friends brought him 48 bottles of XO.
Xiong was said to be influenced not only by wuxia fiction, but also by the works of Ernest Hemingway, Jack London, John Steinbeck and Friedrich Nietzsche. His novels are usually made up of short sentences and paragraphs, and mostly dialogues between characters like a play script.
In contrast with Xiong, other writers such as Jin Yong and Liang Yusheng take an alternative route in writing wuxia fiction, incorporating Chinese history, culture and philosophical ideas in their works. Xiong initially intended to follow them but changed his decision after exposure to western works such as the James Bond series and The Godfather novels. The influence of these works, which relied on the idiosyncrasies of human life, razor-sharp wit, poetic philosophies, mysterious plots and spine-tingling thrills to achieve success, enabled Xiong to come up with a unique way of writing.
List of works
Some of these works were co-written with other writers.
Adaptations of works
- The Jade Faced Assassin (1971), Juedai Shuangjiao
- Clans of Intrigue (1977), Chu Liuxiang Series
- Jade Tiger (1977), Bai Yu Lao Hu
- Sentimental Swordsman (1977), Xiaoli Feidao Series
- Legend of the Bat (1978), Chu Liuxiang Series
- Clan of Amazons (1978), Lu Xiaofeng Series
- The Last Duel (1978), Lu Xiaofeng Series
- The Legend of Broken Sword (1979), Chu Liuxiang Series
- The Proud Twins (1979), Juedai Shuangjiao
- Chu Liu Hsiang and Hu Tieh Hua (1980), Chu Liuxiang Series
- Everlasting Chivalry (1980), Chu Liuxiang Series
- The Sun Moon Legend (1980), Chu Liuxiang Series
- Middle Kingdom's Mark of Blood (1980), Chu Liuxiang Series
- The Duel of the Century (1981), Lu Xiaofeng Series
- The Duel Of The Century (1981), Lu Xiaofeng Series
- The Spirit of the Sword (1982), Wanhua Xijian Lu
- Perils of the Sentimental Swordsman (1982), Lu Xiaofeng Series
- Demon Fighter (1983)
- The Denouncement of Chu Liu Hsiang (1983), Chu Liuxiang Series
- Handsome Siblings (1992), Juedai Shuangjiao
- Butterfly and Sword (film) (1993), Liuxing Hudie Jian
- Legend of the Liquid Sword (1993), Chu Liuxiang Series
- The Duel (film) (2000), Lu Xiaofeng Series
- Luk Siu-fung (1976), Lu Xiaofeng Series
- Juedai Shuangjiao (1977), Juedai Shuangjiao
- The Romantic Swordsman (1978), Xiaoli Feidao Series
- Reincarnated (1979)
- Chor Lau-heung (1979), Chu Liuxiang Series
- The Twins (1979), Juedai Shuangjiao
- Wan Fa Sai Kim Luk (1979), Wanhua Xijian Lu
- The New Adventures of Chor Lau-heung (1984), Chu Liuxiang Series
- Chor Lau-heung (1985), Chu Liuxiang Series
- Xin Juedai Shuangjiao (1986), Juedai Shuangjiao
- The Return of Luk Siu-fung (1986), Lu Xiaofeng Series
- Two Most Honorable Knights (1988), Juedai Shuangjiao
- Against the Blade of Honour (1994), Yuanyue Wandao
- Chor Lau-heung (1995), Chu Liuxiang Series
- The Romantic Swordsman (1995), Xiaoli Feidao Series
- Master Swordsman Lu Xiaofeng (2001), Lu Xiaofeng Series
- Master Swordsman Lu Xiaofeng 2 (2001), Lu Xiaofeng Series
- The New Adventures of Chor Lau-heung (2001), Chu Liuxiang Series
- The Legendary Siblings, (2002), Juedai Shuangjiao
- The Legendary Siblings 2 (2002), Juedai Shuangjiao
- Treasure Raiders (2002), Xiao Shi Yi Lang
- Flying Daggers (2003), Xiaoli Feidao Series
- The Proud Twins (2005), Juedai Shuangjiao
- The Legend of Lu Xiaofeng (2006), Lu Xiaofeng Series
- The Legend of Chu Liuxiang (2007), Chu Liuxiang Series
- The Banner Heroes (2007), Da Qi Ying Xiong Zhuan
- The Spirit of the Sword (2007), Wanhua Xijian Lu
- The Legend of Brown Sugar Chivalries (2008)
- The Legend of Chu Liuxiang (2012), Chu Liuxiang Series
- New Gulong Online, a game based on Gu Long's novels, developed by Taiwanese company Zealot Digital International Corp. It will be released by IAH in Southeast Asia.
Translations of works
Xiong's works have been translated into many languages such as French, English and Vietnamese:
- The Eleventh Son, English translation of Xiao Shiyilang, ISBN 1-931907-16-1.
- Les quatre brigands du Huabei, French translation of Huanle Yingxiong, ISBN 2-87730-371-3
- Stateless Subjects: Chinese Martial Arts Literature and Postcolonial History, Chapter 5. Petrus Liu. (Cornell University, 2011)
- 《傲世鬼才一古龙：古龙与武侠小说国际学术研讨会论文集》林保淳 （学生书局出版，2006）
- Gu Long at the Internet Movie Database
- Gu Long Reading Room - A webpage of fan translations.
- Wuxia Translations Forum - Wuxia translations forum by fans.
- Wuxiapedia - English translations of Gu Long novels, collection of excerpts, and information about his life.
- WuxiaSociety - The only English wuxia portal with focus on discussion forum, dedicated to Gu Long, society of wuxia fans around the world, formerly known as wuxiamania forum
- Qiqi.com - Gu Long's works in Chinese