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RIP: Parke Godwin (1929-2013)

Sad news…

Connor Cochran writes in to tell us that author Parke Godwin has passed away.

Obituary follows…

Novelist and short fiction writer Harold Parke (“Pete”) Godwin, aged 84, died of natural causes on June 19, 2013 in Auburn, California. He leaves behind him a legacy of extraordinary novels spanning many genres, including thrillers, social and religious satire, science fiction, historical romance, and historical fantasy. He wrote what are arguably two of the best Arthurian novels ever, Firelord and Beloved Exile; radically rethought Robin Hood in Sherwood and Robin and the King; and set the entire planet’s sociocultural history on its ear with Waiting For the Galactic Bus and The Snake Oil Wars.

Parke joined the army as a young man and wound up doing top secret work at critical radio listening posts during the Korean conflict. Having been raised in a family with deep roots in stage performance and Vaudeville, after his service stint was over Parke made his living as a touring actor for many years. Through all this time he wrote, but only for himself. He became a published novelist comparatively late in life, at 43, when Playboy Press released his first book, Darker Places. He went on to release 14 novels, two story collections, two plays, and three books written in collaboration with a friend from his acting days, Marvin Kaye: The Master of Solitude, Wintermind, and A Cold Blue Light.

He won the World Fantasy Award for his novella “The Fire When It Comes,” and his story “Influencing the Hell Out of Time and Teresa Golowitz” was adapted for the Twilight Zone television series in 1985.

His last two published books, Watch By Moonlight and The Lovers: the Legend of Trystan and Yseult, were both released under the pseudonym “Jane Hawks.” Before his death he completed three more books which will be released posthumously, and a comprehensive short story collection.

Parke’s executor and literary executor is Connor Cochran. Anyone wishing to share memories and stories (or ask questions) is welcome to call Connor at 650-267-9651, or email him at

[Also via File 770]

About John DeNardo (13012 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.

1 Comment on RIP: Parke Godwin (1929-2013)

  1. Maria Nutick // June 21, 2013 at 1:53 pm //

    Just a quick clarification; the pseudonym for the two novels is Kate Hawks, not Jane Hawks. And the title of the first is Watch by Moonlight.

    So, so sad that he’s gone. He was amazing.

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