David Gerrold is an American screenwriter and author of over 50 books, hundreds of articles and columns, and over a dozen television episodes. He is one of the best sci-fi writers of all time, having penned some of the most popular and redefining scripts, books, and short stories.
David Gerrold was born Jerrold David Friedman in Chicago, Illinois. He grew up in a Jewish family. Gerrold attended Van Nuys High School and Ulysses S. Grant High School's first graduating class. He furthered his studies at Los Angeles Valley College and San Fernando Valley State College, now known as California State University.
Gerrold's career catapulted with his script for The Trouble with Tribbles in Star Trek. His creative prowess extended to TV series such as Land of the Lost, where he created the Sleestak race. A notable feather in his cap is the novelette The Martian Child (1994), which won both Hugo and Nebula Awards and inspired a 2007 film starring John Cusack and Amanda Peet.
In The Martian Child, David Gerrold weaves a touching tale of a single man, a writer, who adopts a son claiming to be from Mars. The story, reflecting his personal experiences as an adoptive father, delves into the themes of love and acceptance.
He continued to work on Star Trek after The Trouble with Tribbles. He contributed to the original series, the animated series, and Star Trek: The Next Generation. His script Blood and Fire is notable for its treatment of AIDS and inclusion of a gay couple, reflecting his advocacy for LGBTQ+ representation.
His early novels, like The Man Who Folded Himself and When HARLIE Was One, showcase his skill in exploring complex scientific and philosophical themes. The War Against the Chtorr series, an ongoing project, depicts an alien invasion in a unique ecological light.
Apart from fiction, Gerrold has penned non-fiction works like The World of Star Trek and Worlds of Wonder: How to Write Science Fiction & Fantasy. His insight into the genre has made him a respected voice in the science fiction community.
His foresight is evident in his 1999 prediction of smartphones, which he termed Personal Information Telecommunications Agent or PITA. His vision accurately described the multifunctional nature of modern smartphones.
In 2005, he received the Telluride Tech Festival Award of Technology. More recently, in 2022, he was honoured with the Robert A. Heinlein Award, underscoring his impact on the genre.
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