Thursday, May 2, 2013

Andrew Offutt, RIP

   So, one of the giants of the seventies' S&S explosion died the other day at the age of 78.  I'm not sure exactly how to describe Andrew J. Offutt as a writer.  I guess what he was was a professional.  Offutt was clearly a workhorse who could crank stuff out.  Wikipedia lists 75 individual novels between 1969 and 1993.  I suspect there're more.  He worked in several genres, from S&S to porn (under at least six noms de bonk according to wikipedia) to sci-fi to historical adventure.  He was also a practiced pasticheur of REH.
   From this page's perspective his most important artistic achievements lay in his editorial skills.  The five Swords Against Darkness books remain unparalleled in presenting new authors and promoting S&S.  He was able to coax new S&S stories out of Manly Wade Wellman and brand new Witchworld tales from Andre Norton.  If you don't have them you need to get them.  These are definitely books that should be available at least as cheap e-books.
   According to the ISFDB, the last thing he wrote and published was a story for Rogue Blades' "Rage of the Behemoth" anthology (of which I still haven't got a copy).  If that's the case, it's fitting that the last published story of a man instrumental in building S&S was in exactly that field.


  1. As far as I know, I've only read "Sword of Skelos" by Offut. However it is always sad to lose a contributor to the field of S&S.

  2. As an editor he's such a big deal. He published Ramsey Campbell's Ryre stories and apparently Charles de Lint's first story.

  3. Offutt, as an editor and writer, was one of my earliest introductions to S&S back in the late '70s and early '80s, and I was always a bit proud he was a fellow Kentuckian.

    He will be missed.