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25 June, 2008

SFX Top 100 Fantasy/SF Authors, pt.1

According to Neil Gaiman, the latest mass-meme is to copy the 'Top 100 Fantasy/SF Authors' list from SFX magazine and comment on each.

A few clarifications/caveats:

  • SFX is a British magazine, so describes popularity here. It's not long since the no.1 author was barely published in the USA.
  • The list is of favourite authors, not 'best', by whatever criteria 'best' might be judged. Unashamedly, it's a popularity contest.
  • I wouldn't classify myself as a 'fantasy/sci-fi' fan (a fact which surprises people who know about my Golden Demon wins!).
The latter point means that a third of the names on the list mean absolutely nothing to me and though I'd heard of a quarter, I've never read anything by them. Of the remaining 42 authors, I've encountered but forgotten work by five authors and utterly detest the 'work' of four others, which definitely contributed to the reason I'm not a fan of general sci-fi and, particularly, fantasy fiction.
I'll simply list those 67 authors in this entry, then comment on the remaining 33 in the next entry.

Totally unfamiliar; encountering the name for the first time
99. Gwyneth Jones
98. Sara Douglass
93. Olaf Stapledon
92. Michael Marshall Smith
90. Christopher Priest
88. Scott Lynch
87. David Weber
86. M. John Harrison
85. Jacqueline Carey
83. Theodore Sturgeon
82. J.V. Jones
81. Joe Abercrombie
79. Simon Clark
76. Charles de Lint
69. Alfred Bester
68. Katherine Kerr
64. Richard Matheson
63. Dan Simmons
62. Elizabeth Haydon
60. Richard Morgan
58. Jennifer Fallon
57. Mercedes Lackey
56. C.J. Cherryh
54. Jasper Fforde
53. Octavia Butler
50. Sherri S. Tepper
43. Jim Butcher
42. Tad Williams
40. Trudi Canavan
31. Lois McMaster Bujold
28. Steven Erikson
26. Guy Gavriel Kay
5. George R.R. Martin
No, I've never even heard of eight of the 'top 50', even one of the 'top ten'.

Name rings a bell, but never encountered
97. Charles Stross
96. Terry Goodkind
95. Brian W. Aldiss
89. Jonathan Carroll
84. Kim Stanley Robinson
77. Samuel R. Delaney
75. Julian May
73. Robert Silverberg
70. Larry Niven
67. Jack Vance
65. Marion Zimmer Bradley
59. Stephen Baxter
55. Harlan Ellison
41. Kurt Vonnegut
36. Orson Scott Card
34. Gene Wolfe
33. China Mieville
30. Roger Zelazny
24. Diana Wynne Jones
22. Philip Pullman
21. Robin Hobb
17. Robert Jordan
15. Robert Heinlein
12. David Gemmell
6. Isaac Asimov
Likewise, I've never knowingly read anything by 24% of the 'top 50'.

Read once; don't really remember
74. Edgar Rice Burroughs
66. Harry Harrison
52. J.G. Ballard
51. Robert E. Howard
19. Ray Bradbury

Reasons I dislike fantasy fiction - utter, infuriating dross
61. Terry Brooks
38. David Eddings
35. Stephen Donaldson
32. Raymond E. Feist

Which leaves 33 for the next entry.

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