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Jerome Bixby

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Jerome Bixby
Jerome Bixby c. 1954
Jerome Bixby c. 1954
BornDrexel Jerome Lewis Bixby
(1923-01-11)January 11, 1923
Los Angeles, California, United States
DiedApril 28, 1998(1998-04-28) (aged 75)
San Bernardino, California, United States
Pen name
  • D. B. Lewis
  • Harry Neal
  • Albert Russell
  • J. Russell
  • M. St. Vivant
  • Thornecliff Herrick
  • Alger Rome (in collaboration with Algis Budrys)
OccupationNovelist, short story writer
GenreScience fiction, western
Notable works
Bixby's "The God-Plllnk" was the cover story of the December 1963 issue of Worlds of Tomorrow.

Drexel Jerome Lewis Bixby (January 11, 1923 – April 28, 1998) was an American short story writer and scriptwriter. He wrote the 1953 story "It's a Good Life", which was included in The Science Fiction Hall of Fame. It formed the basis of a 1961 episode of The Twilight Zone and was remade in Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983). He wrote four episodes for the Star Trek series: "Mirror, Mirror", "Day of the Dove", "Requiem for Methuselah", and "By Any Other Name". With Otto Klement, he co-wrote the story upon which the science fiction movie Fantastic Voyage (1966), the related television series, and the related Isaac Asimov novel were based. Bixby's final produced or published work so far was the screenplay for the 2007 science fiction film The Man from Earth.

He also wrote many westerns and used the pseudonyms Jay Lewis Bixby, D. B. Lewis, Harry Neal, Albert Russell, J. Russell, M. St. Vivant, Thornecliff Herrick, and Alger Rome (for one collaboration with Algis Budrys).


Bixby was born January 11, 1923, in Los Angeles, California, to Rex and Ila (née Lewis) Bixby.[1] He was the editor of Planet Stories from Summer 1950 to July 1951, Jungle Stories from Fall 1949 to Spring 1951 (a magazine which featured stories of Tarzan-imitation Ki-Gor and, briefly, Sheena, Queen of the Jungle), Action Stories from Fall 1949 to Fall 1950, and founding editor of Two Complete Science-Adventure Books (from Winter 1950 to July 1951) and of Two Western Romances from Summer 1950 to Summer 1951 (by which time it was retitled 2 Western-Action Books). All these titles were published by Fiction House, which also published corresponding comic books for which Bixby also wrote and edited.

His best-known television works include four original Star Trek episodes, including 1967's "Mirror, Mirror", which introduced the franchise's concept of the "Mirror Universe"; and 1969's "Requiem for Methuselah", about "Flint", a 6,000-year-old man. He also scripted "Day of the Dove" and "By Any Other Name".

His short story "It's a Good Life" (1953), adapted as a teleplay for The Twilight Zone by Rod Serling, is arguably his best-known work, in his original prose and in audio/visual adaptations. It was revisited in the 1983 Twilight Zone film, and chosen to be one of the many Twilight Zone episodes parodied by The Simpsons, this one in the Halloween 1991 episode "Treehouse of Horror II".

Bixby conceived and co-wrote the story for the 1966 film Fantastic Voyage,[2][3][4][5] Bantam Books obtained the rights for a paperback novelization based on the screenplay and approached Isaac Asimov to write it.[6]

Jerome Bixby's last work, a screenplay, The Man from Earth, was conceived in the early 1960s and completed on his deathbed in April 1998. In 2007, it was made into an independent motion picture, with his son Emerson Bixby as executive producer, directed by Richard Schenkman, and starring David Lee Smith, William Katt, Richard Riehle, Tony Todd, Annika Peterson, Alexis Thorpe, Ellen Crawford, and John Billingsley.

Bixby wrote the original screenplay for It! The Terror from Beyond Space (1958), which inspired Alien (1979). The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine seventh-season Mirror Universe episode, "The Emperor's New Cloak" (1999), is dedicated to Bixby's memory.

Isaac Asimov described Bixby as "an excellent piano player".[7]

He died on April 28, 1998, in San Bernardino, California, of heart failure, aged 75.[8]



  • Devil's Scrapbook (1964; reprinted as Call for an Exorcist 1974)
  • Space by the Tale (1964)
  • Mirror Mirror: Classic SF by the Famed Star Trek and Fantastic Voyage Writer (2014)

Short stories[edit]

  • "Tubemonkey" (1949)
  • "And All for One" (1950)
  • "The Crowded Colony" (1950) [as by Jay B. Drexel]
  • "Cargo to Callisto" (1950) [as by Jay B. Drexel]
  • "The Whip" (1951) [as by Jerome D. Bixby]
  • "Vengeance on Mars" (1951) [as by D. B. Lewis]
  • "Page and Player" (1952) [as by Harry Neal]
  • "Ev" (1952) with Raymond Z. Gallun
  • "Nightride and Sunrise" (1952) with James Blish [as by Jerome Bixby]
  • "The Second Ship" (1952)
  • "Sort of Like a Flower" (1952)
  • "Angels in the Jets" (1952)
  • "Zen" (1952)
  • "It's a Good Life" (1953), published in Kingsley Amis (editor), The Golden Age of Science Fiction (1981)
  • "The Slizzers" (1953)
  • "Share Alike" (1953) with Joe E. Dean
  • "Can Such Beauty Be?" (1953)
  • "The Monster" (1953)
  • "Underestimation" (1953) with Algis Budrys [as by Alger Rome]
  • "Where There's Hope" (1953)
  • "One Way Street" (1953)
  • "Little Boy" (1954) [as by Harry Neal]
  • "The Holes Around Mars" (1954)
  • "The Good Dog" (1954)
  • "Halfway to Hell" (1954)
  • "The Draw" (1954)
  • "The Young One" (1954)
  • "Small War" (1954)
  • "Mirror, Mirror" (1954)
  • "For Little George" (1954) [as by J. B. Drexel]
  • "The Battle of the Bells" (1954)
  • "The Murder-Con" (1954)
  • "Our Town" (1955)
  • "Laboratory" (1955)
  • "Trace" (1961)
  • "The Magic Typewriter" (1963)
  • "The Bad Life" (1963)
  • "The God-Plllnk" (1963)
  • "The Best Lover in Hell" (1964)
  • "Lust in Stone" (1964)
  • "Sin Wager" (1964)
  • "Kiss of Blood" (1964)
  • "The Marquis' Magic Potion" (1964)
  • "Natural History of the Kley" (1964)
  • "Old Testament" (1964)
  • "The Magic Potion" (1976)


  • Day of the Dove (1978)


Star Trek Episodes
Men into Space Episode
Twilight Zone stories


  1. ^ Reginald, Robert (1970). Contemporary Science Fiction Authors. Los Angeles: Unicorn and Son. p. 21. ISBN 978-1-4344-7858-0. OCLC 156326.
  2. ^ Menville, Douglas Alver; Reginald, R. (1977). Things to Come: An Illustrated History of the Science Fiction Film. Times Books. p. 133. ISBN 0-8129-0710-8.
  3. ^ Fischer, Dennis (2000). Science Fiction Film Directors, 1895–1998. McFarland. p. 192. ISBN 0-7864-0740-9.
  4. ^ Maltin, Leonard (2008). Leonard Maltin's Movie Guide (2009 ed.). Penguin Group. p. 438. ISBN 978-0-452-28978-9.
  5. ^ "Full cast and crew for 'Fantastic Voyage'". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved November 23, 2009.
  6. ^ Asimov, Isaac (1980). In Joy Still Felt: The Autobiography of Isaac Asimov, 1954–1978. New York: Avon. p. 363. ISBN 0-380-53025-2.
  7. ^ Asimov, I. (1971) Where Do We Go From Here? Fawcett Crest, p. 235
  8. ^ "Jerome Bixby". IMDb.

External links[edit]