Goodbye to a woman who revolutionized science fiction: RIP Ursula K. Le Guin

There are two books that that were integral to my decision to become a writer of science fiction and fantasy, and both are by Ursula K. Le Guin: The Left Hand of Darkness and The Dispossessed. When I read those as a young adult, I was blown away at the way her thought experiments in those novels could leave me stunned and amazed — and considering the world in a very different way than I had before. One of the lines I absolutely loved (and I’m quoting from memory here, so it might not be accurate): “The king was pregnant.”

The Left Hand of Darkness

I used to say jokingly that I wanted to be Ursula K. Le Guin when I grew up. It was one of the greatest honors I have ever experienced when a review compared my fiction to that of Le Guin.

I read her revolutionary works in the seventies, and they may not be as eye-opening now as they were then. On the other hand, when you look at the present political situation in the U.S., revolutionary thinking seems to have gone by the wayside.

RIP Ursula K. Le Guin. May your brilliant thought experiments soon be revived and social progress not be in vain.

7 thoughts on “Goodbye to a woman who revolutionized science fiction: RIP Ursula K. Le Guin”

  1. Ruth What a lovely post in tribute of a great writer. I did not know Ursula le Guin had died. I grew up with the Left Hand of Darkness and the Earthsea trilogy. I am not surprised you wanted to be her when you grew up. I wanted to be her when I grew up. She was a genius and her work inspirational. RIP indeed!

  2. I adore Ursula Le Guin’s books. I remember being in grad school, trying to find my writer’s voice, and she was (and still is) such an inspiration. It’s not just her fantasy and science fiction that inspires me, however. She was also a gifted essayist, and her thoughts on writing and the creative process are, in my view, essential reading for leading a creative life. RIP, Ursula Le Guin, a beautiful voice and, one can imagine, a beautiful soul behind that voice.

    1. Hi, Denise! Nice to “see” you again. 🙂 And yes, I agree with you that she was an inspiration far beyond her fiction — and a very wonderful person. I wish she could have lived forever.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s