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Greg Bear biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

Greg Bear

Greg Bear

Greg Bear Biography

Greg Bear was born in San Diego, California, on August 20th, 1951, to Wilma M. and Dale F. Bear. His father was in the navy so as a child he had traveled extensively to Japan, the Philippines and Alaska, as well as touring various parts of the United States.

He completed his first short story at the age of 10 while living in Alaska. At age thirteen or fourteen he began to submit stories to magazines, and at fifteen he sold his first short short to Robert Lowndes' Famous Science Fiction magazine, but it didn't appear in print until he was sixteen years old. It took five years to sell his next story, but by the time he was twenty-three he was selling regularly. He completed his first novel when he was nineteen but it was not published until 13 years later (having been completely rewritten). He sold his first novel, Hegira, to Dell in 1979.

He is the author of more than thirty books of science fiction and fantasy, including Blood Music, The Forge of God, Darwin's Radio, and Quantico. He is married to Astrid Anderson Bear and is the father of Erik and Alexandra. Awarded two Hugos and five Nebulas for his fiction, one of two authors to win a Nebula in every category, Bear has been called the “Best working writer of hard science fiction” by “The Ultimate Encyclopedia of Science Fiction.” His stories have been collected into an omnibus volume by Tor Books. Bear has served on political and scientific action committees and has advised Microsoft Corporation, the U.S. Army, the CIA, Sandia National Laboratories, Callison Architecture, Inc., Homeland Security,  and other groups and agencies.

Greg Bear's website

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Interview

Greg Bear discusses the factual existence of Endogenous Retroviruses in almost all living things, how they serve a number of useful functions in humans, and whether such an ERV could lead to the substantial genetic changes he explores in Darwin's Radio and Darwin's Children. He also talks about his views on religion and politics.

Q: In Darwin's Radio, you wrote about the evolution of a new human species that is triggered by an HERV, or Human Endogenous Retrovirus—which, if I understand correctly, is a kind of ancient virus that has entered into human DNA and persisted there in a dormant state for hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of years. HERVs sound so much like pure science fiction that it's rather shocking to discover they actually do exist inside us, although without the evolutionary properties you ascribe to them . . . at least, so far. Can you talk a little bit about HERVs, both in fact and in your fiction?

GB: Endogenous Retroviruses (ERV) are real and exist in various forms in nearly all living things. ERVs appear to serve a number of functions; in humans, a gene from an HERV (that is, a virus gene) helps human embryos implant in the mother’s womb. So, they are no longer solely disease-causing (though expression of ERV may lead to some autoimmune disorders).

Within our genes are many "mobile" genes that can copy themselves and transport other genes from one position to another. These are called transposons, or retrotransposons, and they may play a huge role in organizing and regulating our genome. ...

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Books by this Author

Books by Greg Bear at BookBrowse
City at the End of Time jacket Quantico jacket Darwin's Children jacket Star Wars: Episode 1: Rogue Planet jacket
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Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Greg Bear but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Arthur C. Clarke

    Arthur C. Clarke

    Arthur C. Clarke is considered the greatest science fiction writer of all time and an international treasure in many other ways, including the fact that an article by him in 1945 led to the invention of satellite technology. ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Star Wars: Episode 1: Rogue Planet

    Try:
    3001
    by Arthur C. Clarke

  • John Twelve Hawks

    John Twelve Hawks

    John Twelve Hawks' books includeNew York Times bestseller, The Traveler, as well as The Golden City and The Dark River. "John Twelve Hawks" is a pseudonym and his real identity is unknown. He lives "off the grid." (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Darwin's Children

    Try:
    The Traveler
    by John Twelve Hawks

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