F. Paul Wilson

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F. Paul Wilson
Wilson, F Paul (2007) crop.jpg
F. Paul Wilson at a book signing in 2007
Born Francis Paul Wilson
(1946-05-17) May 17, 1946 (age 68)
Jersey City, New Jersey, United States
Period 1976–present
Genres Science fiction, horror
Notable award(s) Prometheus Award
1979 Wheels Within Wheels

Prometheus Award
2004 Sims

Francis Paul Wilson (born May 17, 1946 in Jersey City, New Jersey) is an American author, primarily in the science fiction and horror genres.

Career[edit]

His debut novel was Healer (1976). Wilson is also a part-time practicing family physician. He made his first sales in 1970 to Analog while still in medical school (graduating in 1973), and continued to write science fiction throughout the seventies. In 1981, he ventured into the horror genre with the international bestseller, The Keep, and helped define the field throughout the rest of the decade. In the 1990s, he became a true genre hopper, moving from science fiction to horror to medical thrillers and branching into interactive scripting for Disney Interactive and other multimedia companies. He, along with Matthew J. Costello, created and scripted FTL Newsfeed, which ran daily on the Sci-Fi Channel from 1992–1996.

Among Wilson's best-known characters is the anti-hero Repairman Jack, an urban mercenary introduced in the 1984 New York Times bestseller, The Tomb. Unwilling to start a series character at the time, Wilson refused to write a second Repairman Jack novel until Legacies in 1998. Since then he has written one per year along with side trips into vampire fiction (the retro Midnight Mass), science fiction (Sims), and even a New Age thriller (The Fifth Harmonic). Current books sales are around six million.[1][2]

Throughout his writing – especially in his earlier science fiction works (most notably An Enemy of the State) – Wilson has included explicitly libertarian political philosophy which extends to his "Repairman Jack" series. He won the first Prometheus Award in 1979 for his novel Wheels Within Wheels and another in 2004 for Sims. The Libertarian Futurist Society has also honored Wilson with their Hall of Fame Award for Healer (in 1990) and An Enemy of the State (in 1991).

Wilson is a noted fan of H. P. Lovecraft[3]

Why? Because HPL is special to me.
Donald A. Wollheim is to blame. He started me on Lovecraft. It was 1959. I was just a kid, a mere thirteen years old when he slipped me my first fix. I was a good kid up till then, reading Ace Doubles and clean, wholesome science fiction stories by the likes of Heinlein, E.E. Smith, Poul Anderson, Fred Pohl, and the rest. But he brought me down with one anthology. He knew what he was doing. He called it THE MACABRE READER and slapped this lurid neato cool Ed Emshwiller cover on it. I couldn't resist. I bought it.

I read it. And that was it. The beginning of my end.

In answer to a claim that Tolkien's Lord of the Rings was an influence on The Keep, Wilson responded:

First off, I'm not a fan of LOtR – I struggled through it once as a teen (skimming a lot) and never looked back. ... The influences on The Keep were Ludlum, R. E. Howard, and Lovecraft.[4]

Like most American science fiction writers directly or indirectly influenced by Campbell's view of the genre as a literature of ideas [1], Wilson makes use of his work to explore trends and technologies speculatively as they manifest. A prominent example is his novel An Enemy of the State (published in 1980), which was written during the 1970s, an era that saw stagflation develop in the U.S. economy. In that period, inflation in the United States reached its highest level since World War II, due to the issue of fiat money by the Federal Reserve. In Wilson's novel, he extends the "squeeze" of confiscatory taxation and currency debauchment to a conclusion involving a Weimar Republic-style hyperinflation that brings down a galactic empire – and from which humanity's only hope of rescue arrives in the form of an anarchist conspiracy to complete the Empire's downfall and replace that government's "official counterfeit" with honest money. Throughout the book, Wilson runs chapter headings quoting from economic works such as Fiat Money Inflation in Franceand KYFHO, a kind of anarchic philosophy that he invented as model for a perfect society. The protagonist La Nague was born on Tolive, where the philosophy led to a government described in detail in "The Healer".[5]

The Keep was later made into a movie and there is much talk of a Repairman Jack film based on one of Wilson's novels. [2]

Hate to say it (being a devout believer in Murphy's law), but The Tomb looks like it's on its way to being filmed this year. Last October, after seven years of development, numerous options, five screenwriters, and eight scripts, Beacon Films ("Air Force One," "Thirteen Days," "Spy Game," etc) finally bought film rights. Disney/Touchstone/Buena Vista will be partnering and distributing the film here and abroad.The film will be called "Repairman Jack" (the idea is to make him a franchise character).

His short stories "Foet", "Traps", and "Lipidleggin'" were filmed as short films and collected on the DVD OTHERS: The Tales of F. Paul Wilson.[citation needed]

His short story "Pelts" was made into an episode of Masters of Horror.

In January 2012, Wilson began writing for the tech web site Byte, mostly in the persona of Repairman Jack.[6]

Wilson has been a resident of Wall Township, New Jersey.[7]

Novels[edit]

The Adversary Cycle[edit]

Main article: The Adversary Cycle

Repairman Jack[edit]

  1. The Tomb (1984), ISBN 0-425-07295-9 (re-released in 2004 under its original title, Rakoshi, by Borderlands Press)
  2. "A Day in the Life" (short story) (1989) (available in The Barrens and Others)
  3. "The Last Rakosh" (1990) (later incorporated into All The Rage, then in 2006 as revised hardcover and paperback editions)
  4. "The Long Way Home" (short story) (1992)
  5. "Home Repairs" (short story) (1996) (later incorporated into Conspiracies)
  6. "The Wringer" (short story) (1996) (later incorporated into Fatal Error)
  7. Legacies (1998), ISBN 0-7472-1703-3
  8. Conspiracies (1999), ISBN 0-312-86797-2
  9. All The Rage (2000), ISBN 0-312-86796-4
  10. Hosts (2001), ISBN 0-312-87866-4
  11. The Haunted Air (2002), ISBN 0-312-87868-0
  12. Gateways (2003), ISBN 0-7653-0690-5
  13. Crisscross (2004), ISBN 0-7653-0691-3
  14. Infernal (2005), ISBN 0-7653-1275-1
  15. Harbingers (2006), ISBN 0-7653-1276-X
  16. "Interlude at Duane's" (short story) (2006) (available in the James Patterson-edited anthology Thriller and Aftershock and Others)
  17. Bloodline (2007), ISBN 0-7653-1706-0
  18. "Do-Gooder" (short short) (2007) (a 200-copy limited one-sheet "short short")
  19. By The Sword (2008), ISBN 0-7653-1707-9
  20. Ground Zero (2009), ISBN 978-0-7653-2281-4
  21. Fatal Error (2010), ISBN 978-1-934267-18-9
  22. The Dark at the End (2011), ISBN 978-0-7653-2283-8
  23. Quick Fixes- Tales of Repairman Jack (collection of all short stories) (2011), ISBN 978-1-4611-9074-5
  24. The heavily revised (2012) version of Nightworld is styled as "a Repairman Jack novel" and marks the end of the RJ and Adversary cycles.

Young Repairman Jack[edit]

  1. Secret Histories (young adult novel) (2008)
  2. Secret Circles (young adult novel) (2010)
  3. Secret Vengeance (young adult novel) (2011)

Early Repairman Jack[edit]

  1. Cold City (Nov 2012)
  2. Dark City (TBP: Fall 2013)
  3. Fear City (TBP: Fall 2014)

LaNague Federation[edit]

  1. An Enemy of the State (1980), ISBN 0-385-15422-4 (reprinted in 2005, includes "Lipidleggin'" and "Ratman" ISBN 0-9766544-2-3)
  2. Wheels Within Wheels (1978), ISBN 0-385-14397-4 (revised/reprinted in 2005, includes "Higher Centers" and "The Man with the Anteater" ISBN 0-9766544-3-1)
  3. Healer (1976), ISBN 0-385-11548-2 (reprinted in 2005, includes "To Fill the Sea and Air" ISBN 0-9766544-1-5)

Other Books[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Interviews[edit]

Film version of The Keep[edit]