Acclaimed Science Fiction Writer Harlan Ellison Dies at 84

Harlan Ellison, a prolific science fiction writer who scripted episodes for Star Trek and Babylon 5, has passed away in his sleep at the age of 84. Known for his nightmarish scenarios and at times cantankerous style, Ellison penned about 50 books throughout his career, as well as more than 1,400 essays, TV scripts, and screenplays. One of his best known works, A Boy and His Dog, follows a young man and his telepathic dog in a world ruined by nuclear wars and dominated by gangs. Ellison’s stories often shocked audiences, but the author once said that is what he wanted—for his work “to grab you by the throat and tear off parts of your body.” His death prompted an outpouring of tributes Thursday from fellow writers. “Harlan Ellison: There was no one quite like him in American letters, and never will be,” Stephen King tweeted. “Angry, funny, eloquent, hugely talented. If there’s an afterlife, Harlan is already kicking ass and taking down names.”