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Offutt, Andrew J

Entry updated 12 September 2022. Tagged: Author.

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(1934-2013) US author who often signed his name andrew j offutt; his first published story was as by Andy Offutt and his first professional sale was as by A J Offutt. Though that first published story, "And Gone Tomorrow" for If in December 1954, was a contest winner, he regarded his professional sf career as beginning with "Blacksword" in Galaxy for December 1959. He soon became a prolific writer in several genres, both under his own name and under pseudonyms including John Cleve (see below for the Spaceways sequence, the first six written solo, most of the rest in collaboration, but all signed Cleve alone), Jeff Douglas, Farrah Fawkes, Baxter Giles and the House Name J X Williams. Chris Offutt's My Father, the Pornographer: A Memoir (2016) engagingly describes Offutt's career as a producer of circa 400 pornographic novels under various pseudonyms, a yet undetermined number of these being sf Sex novels.

Offutt's first sf novel under his own name was the Near Future Evil Is Live Spelled Backwards (1970), in which an underground movement opposes a twenty-first-century Religious tyranny through sexual revolution. The Castle Keeps (1972) more ambitiously depicts – through an acid examination of Survivalist shibboleths – the violent disintegration of Western culture through Overpopulation and Pollution; survivors, who live in armoured Keeps, keep the world at bay. A juvenile, The Galactic Rejects (1973), features three young friends with Psi Powers on a Utopian world threatened by Invasion.

From the mid-1970s, with the appearance of such tales as Messenger of Zhuvastou (1973) and My Lord Barbarian (1977), Offutt turned primarily to fantasy, usually Sword and Sorcery and often works Tied to other authors' creations, though he continued to publish sf erotica as by John Cleve into the 1980s. The War of the Wizards fantasy trio [see Checklist] was written with Richard K Lyon. Offutt's urgent, sometimes rather hasty style and his sharp intelligence were most effectively deployed in sf stories depicting a hectic urban world and, though he clearly found all sorts of material congenial, his later career was not of striking interest, though after an interval he began to publish short fiction again in 2007. [JC]

see also: Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America.

Andrew Jefferson Offutt V

born Louisville, Kentucky: 16 August 1934

died Kentucky: 30 April 2013


series (selected)

Cormac Mac Art


War of the Wizards

War of the Gods on Earth


individual titles

Erotic novels, most not sf, are selected only; many titles remain unidentified.

works as editor

Swords Against Darkness

about the author


previous versions of this entry

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