Robert Silverberg is rightly considered by many as one of the greatest living Science Fiction Writers. His career stretches back to the pulps and his output is amazing by any standards. He’s authored numerous novels, short stories and nonfiction books in various genres and categories. He’s also a frequent guest at Cons. A regularly columnist for Asimov’s, his major works include Dying Inside, The Book of Skulls, The Alien Years, The World Inside, Nightfall with Isaac Asimov, Son of Man, A Time of Changes and the 7 Majipoor Cycle books. (A major bibliography can be found at here.) His first Majipoor trilogy, Lord Valentine’s Castle, Majipoor Chronicles and Valentine Pontifex are being reissued by ROC Books in May 2012, September 2012 and January 2013. (Covers shown above; click for larger versions.) A new anthology collecting all the Majipoor short tales called Tales Of Majipoor will follow in May 2013. Bryan Thomas Schmidt of SFFWRTCHT took the time to talk with Silverberg about Majipoor, his approach to craft and more in preparation for the books’ reissue almost 30 years after their first release.
SFFWRTCHT: Let’s start with the basics: Where did your interest in Science Fiction and Fantasy come from?
Robert Silverberg: As a child I was interested in all sorts of romantic far-off things — the visionary world of the Greek and Norse myths, the dinosaurs that I saw at New York’s Museum of Natural History, the stars in the night sky, etc., etc. By the time I was ten I discovered that there was such a thing as science fiction (though I didn’t hear the term itself for another two or three years) that embodied in prose the wonders and mysteries that I yearned to know much more about.