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A Good Place To Start
|Old Man's War||3|
A Bad Place To Start
|The Last Colony (Old Man's War #3)||1|
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John Michael Scalzi (born May 10, 1969) is an author and online writer, best known for his science fiction novel Old Man's War, released by Tor Books in January 2005, and for his blog Whatever, at which he has written daily on a number of topics since 1998. He has also written a number of non-fiction books.
Scalzi was born in California and spent his childhood there, primarily in the Los Angeles suburbs of Covina, Glendora and Claremont. He attended The Webb Schools of California before attending The University of Chicago, where he was a classmate of Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright David Auburn. After graduating in 1991, Scalzi took a job as the film critic for the Fresno Bee newspaper, eventually also becoming a humor columnist. In 1996 he was hired as the in-house writer and editor at America Online. Since 1998 he has been a full-time freelance writer and author. Currently, Scalzi lives in Ohio.
Scalzi's first published novel was Old Man's War, in which 75-year-old citizens of Earth are recruited to join the defense forces of human colonies in space. Scalzi noted the book's similarities to Robert A. Heinlein's Starship Troopers by thanking Heinlein in the acknowlegements of the book. Old Man's War came to publication after debuting online: Scalzi serialized the book on his Web site in December 2002, which resulted in an offer for the book by Tor Books Senior Editor Patrick Nielsen Hayden. The hardcover edition of the book was published in January, 2005.
Scalzi's second published novel was Agent to the Stars. This novel was actually writtern prior to Old Man's War (it was written in 1997), and was placed online in 1999 as a "shareware novel" by Scalzi, who encouraged readers to send him a dollar if they liked the story (he re-released the book as "freeware" in 2004). The novel became available as a signed, limited-edition hardcover from Subterranean Press in July 2005, and featured cover art from popular Penny Arcade artist Mike Krahulik.
In February 2006, The Ghost Brigades, the sequel to Old Man's War, was released. 2006 will also see the release of another science fiction novel, The Android's Dream.
While Scalzi is best known for his fiction, he has written several non-fiction books as well, including a trio for London publisher Rough Guides' reference line of books. The first of these was The Rough Guide to Money Online, released in late October of 2000. This reference book featured tips on using online financial tools. According to Scalzi, it did less-than-expected business, possibly due to the collapse of the Internet Bubble at about the same time the book was released. Scalzi's next non-fiction book was The Rough Guide to the Universe, an astronomy book designed for novice-to-intermediate stargazers, released in May of 2003. Scalzi's third book for Rough Guides, The Rough Guide to Sci-Fi Movies, was released in October of 2005. This book covered the history of science fiction and science fiction film, and listed a "canon" of 50 significant science fiction films.
Scalzi is also the author of the "Book of the Dumb" series of books from Portable Press. These books chronicle people doing stupid things. The first book in the series was released in October 2003 with a second following a year later.
Online and Other Writing
Scalzi registered the domain name Scalzi.com in 1998 and in that year also began writing the "Whatever," a more-or-less daily blog. The name suggests the wide range of topics Scalzi writes about there, although many of Scalzi's more memorable postings center on the topics of politics and writing. While Scalzi maintains he started the Whatever to keep in practice for "pro" writing, a number of writings originally posted there have gone on to be published in traditional media, including his "I Hate Your Politics" and "Being Poor" entries, the latter of which was published in the op-ed pages of the Chicago Tribune in September of 2005. In November 2005, Scalzi announced that entries from the run of the Whatever would be compiled into a book from Subterranean Press, to be published in the summer of 2006.
In addition to his personal site, Scalzi is a professional blogger for America Online's AOL Journals and AIM Blogs service. In this role he creates participatory entries, answers questions about blogging from AOL members, and posts interesting links for readers. Readers of both Scalzi's personal site and his AOL Journal (By the Way) have noted distinct differences in tone at each site. Scalzi has acknowledged this tonal difference, based on the different missions of each site.
For traditional media, Scalzi writes a DVD review column and an opinion column for the Official US Playstation Magazine, and a second DVD review column for the Dayton Daily News, and writes for other magazines and newspapers on an occasional basis. He also works as a consultant for businesses, primarily in the online and financial fields.
From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Scalzi 060228