Parke Godwin

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For the 19th century journalist, see Parke Godwin (journalist).
Parke Godwin
Born (1929-01-28)January 28, 1929
New York City
Died June 19, 2013(2013-06-19) (aged 84)
Auburn, California
Occupation Novelist
Genre Science fiction, fantasy, historical fiction

Parke Godwin (January 28, 1929 – June 19, 2013) was an American writer.[1] He won the World Fantasy Award for Best Novella in 1982 for his story "The Fire When It Comes."[2] He was a native of New York City, where he was born in 1929.[3]


Godwin is known for his novels of legendary figures placed in realistic historical settings, written in a lyrical yet precise prose style and sardonic humor. His retelling of the Arthur legend, Firelord in 1980, Beloved Exile in 1984 and The Last Rainbow in 1985, is set in the 5th century during the collapse of the Roman empire, and his reinterpretation of Robin Hood (Sherwood, 1991, and Robin and the King, 1993) takes place during the Norman conquest and features kings William the Conqueror and William Rufus as major characters. His other well-known works include Waiting for the Galactic Bus (1988) and its sequel: The Snake Oil Wars which is also known as The Snake Oil Variations, in 1989. These were humorous critiques of American pop culture and religion.

His short fiction has appeared in several anthologies. His short story "Influencing the Hell out of Time and Teresa Golowitz," was the basis of an episode of the television series The Twilight Zone.

Godwin has also been a radio operator, a research technician, a professional actor, an advertising man, a dishwasher and a maitre d' hotel.

In 2011, he was the Guest of Honor at the World Fantasy Con.[4] He was placed in a close care facility in 2012 due to a decline in his long- and short-term memory.[5] He died in 2013.[6]


  • Darker Places, 1973
  • A Memory of Lions, 1976
  • A Cold Blue Light, 1983 (with Marvin Kaye) (Berkley Books, 1983)
  • The Fire When It Comes, 1984 (collection of short stories) (Hugo nominee)
  • The Last Rainbow, 1985
  • A Truce with Time, 1988
  • Invitation to Camelot, 1988 (editor)
  • Limbo Search, 1995
  • The Tower of Beowulf, 1995
  • Lord of Sunset, 1998
  • Night You Could Hear Forever, 1999
  • The Lovers: The Legend of Trystan and Yseult, 1999 (as Kate Hawks)
  • Watch By Moonlight, 2001 (as Kate Hawks)
  • Prince of Nowhere, 2011

The Masters of Solitude series[edit]

The novel A Cold Blue Light, 1983 (with Marvin Kaye) is sometimes listed as the third volume of the trilogy, but is unrelated; the third volume Singer Among The Nightingales has been written but, unfortunately, wasn't published before his death.

Firelord series[edit]

The Firelord books deal with the Arthurian legend and events before and after the time of King Arthur. Firelord is about Arthur's rise and his relationship with his powerful wife, Guenevere. Beloved Exile follows Guenevere after Arthur's death as different factions fight for control of Britain. The Last Rainbow is set earlier, and revolves around a love story involving Saint Patrick. Godwin also published another book featuring Arthurian material, The Lovers: The Legend of Trystan and Yseult, published in 1999 under the pseudonym Kate Hawks.

Snake Oil series[edit]

  • Waiting for the Galactic Bus, 1988
  • The Snake Oil Wars: or Scheherazade Ginsberg Strikes Again, 1989 (also published under the title The Snake Oil Variations)

Robin Hood series[edit]

  • Sherwood, 1991
  • Robin and the King, 1993 (also published under the title Return to Nottingham: A Novel)


  1. ^ Craig, Paul (May 15, 1988). "Godwin tale aims at wrong audience". Modesto Bee. pp. F–5. Retrieved June 28, 2011. 
  2. ^ World Fantasy Awards, Awardweb
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ World Fantasy Con
  5. ^ Parke Godwin’s Health in Decline, SF Site, August 20, 2012.
  6. ^ Parke Godwin (1929–2013), File 770, Mike Glyer.

External links[edit]