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Norwood, Warren C

Entry updated 12 September 2022. Tagged: Author.

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(1945-2005) US bookseller and author who has normally published as Warren Norwood, sometimes as Warren C Norwood; due to a publisher's error, some titles were published as by Warren G Norwood. After a number of years in bookselling, during which period he published some not particularly distinguished poetry, Norwood began his sf career with the Windhover Tapes sequence – The Windhover Tapes: An Image of Voices (1982), The Windhover Tapes: #2: Flexing the Warp (1983), The Windhover Tapes: #3: Fize of the Gabriel Ratchets (1983) and The Windhover Tapes: #4: Planet of Flowers (1984) – attempting with some success to compose Space Operas whose baroque inturnings are themselves of some narrative interest; but calling the human protagonist of the series Gerard Hopkins Manley and referring to Hopkins (1844-1889) with some frequency – while implying that Manley himself is ignorant of any connection with the poet – does suggest a disconnectedness deep within the structure of the sequence. The Tapes themselves constitute a record kept by the sentient Starship Windhover, detailing Manley's quite various adventures on several planets as troubleshooter and anthropologist. A second series, the Double Spiral War sequence – Midway Between (1984), Polar Fleet (1985) and Final Command (1986) – is less chaotic but also less interesting. The Seren Cenacles (1983) with Ralph Mylius (1945-    ) likewise suffers from inattentive bursts of energy; though Shudderchild (1987), set in a genuinely complicated multistate Post-Holocaust USA, is engagingly compact and full of Survivalist Fiction action, and True Jaguar (1988), a fantasy, delves intriguingly into Mayan lore.

In 1988 Norwood publicly announced that he had been diagnosed as having terminal pancreatic cancer; in 1991 he said that he had entered remission (and indeed survived for more than a decade), and also indicated his wish to acknowledge assistance in completing the Time Police sequence, a Byron Preiss package beginning with Time Police: Vanished! (1988) and ending with Time Police #4: Refugee (1989) with Mel Odom, who collaborated on all four volumes and was given co-author credit on the last two; Norwood's wife, Gigi Sherrell Norwood, had extensively outlined at least two volumes after the onset of her husband's illness. The sequence itself is a fairly unremarkable reworking of the Time Patrol (see Time Police) recipe created by Poul Anderson and others. Given the enforced hiatus at the end of nearly a decade of intense productivity, it was perhaps unsurprising (though regretted) that Norwood was not able to move beyond the slightly unfocused exuberance of his first work. [JC]

Warren Carl Norwood

born Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: 21 August 1945

died Weatherford, Texas: 3 June 2005



Windhover Tapes

Double Spiral War

  • Midway Between (New York: Bantam Books, 1984) [Double Spiral War: pb/Frank Morris]
  • Polar Fleet (New York: Bantam Books, 1985) [Double Spiral War: pb/Frank Morris]
  • Final Command (New York: Bantam Books, 1986) [Double Spiral War: pb/Joe DeVito]

Time Police

individual titles


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