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American sci fi author (1944- )

The computer has evolved into a partner, a tool, and an environment--not just in science fiction, but in the public consciousness as well. Computers are no longer malevolent iron brains that manufacture tyrannical and oppressive answers; they are not a way to think, they are a place from which to think. The computer is an environment in which answers can be sought, created, manipulated and developed.

DAVID GERROLD, InfoWorld, Jul. 5, 1982

As science fiction writers began to get their first glimmerings of the kind of power that computers might someday control, their immediate reaction was one of panic. Even through the 1960s, this view of computers as powerful gods did not change; it only became more sophisticated. For instance, Arthur C. Clarke wrote a short story that began with every telephone on earth ringing at the same time. Over the course of the next few hours, there were an extraordinary number of plane crashes and accidents. The punch line of the story was that the communications network that linked every machine on the planet into one vast consciousness had finally "awakened." The ringing of the phones was the birth cry of the baby and the crash of the planes was its first attempt to play. And so on. The idea was this: When the consciousness wakes up, watch out.

DAVID GERROLD, InfoWorld, Jul. 5, 1982

The jingling of a fat purse always commands the world.

DAVID GERROLD, Under the Eye of God

I think I exist, therefore I exist. I think.

DAVID GERROLD, The Man Who Folded Himself

To say that a writer's hold on reality is tenuous is an understatement — it's like saying the Titanic had a rough crossing. Writers build their own realities, move into them, and occasionally send letters home.

DAVID GERROLD, The Martian Child

Life is hard. Then you die. Then they throw dirt in your face. Then the worms eat you. Be grateful it happens in that order.

DAVID GERROLD, Alternate Gerrolds

You will find it easiest to ride the avalanche in the direction it already travels.

DAVID GERROLD, Under the Eye of God

I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters.


Only people who haven't lived through a war advocate it so eagerly.

DAVID GERROLD, Under the Eye of God

I have memories - but only a fool stores his past in the future.

DAVID GERROLD, A Covenant of Justice

The avalanche of time sweeps everything before it. Every individual instant hurtles into oblivion, drowning out the obliteration of the instant immediately preceding it, and then it too disappears under the onslaught of the next and the next and the next. When the avalanche has shuddered past for a long enough time, the perception of the past evolves. Distant events grow beyond mere history and take on the weight of legend.

DAVID GERROLD, Under the Eye of God

You can tell a lot about a civilization by the quality of the people found in its jails.

DAVID GERROLD, Under the Eye of God

Christianity has held back any further advances in human consciousness for the past thousand years. And for the past century it’s been in direct conflict with its illegitimate offspring, Communism (again with a capital C). Both ask the individual to sacrifice his self-interest to the higher goals of the organization. (Which is okay by me as long as it’s voluntary; but as soon as either becomes too big—and takes on that damned capital C—they stop asking for cooperation and start demanding it.) Any higher states of human enlightenment have been sacrificed between these two monoliths.

DAVID GERROLD, The Man Who Folded Himself

Incompetency fed on itself.

DAVID GERROLD, Under the Eye of God

Morality—like velocity—is relative. The determination of it depends on what the objects around you are doing. All one can do is measure one's position in relation to them; never can one measure one's velocity or morality in terms of absolutes.


Most people say they want justice, but they don't really want justice. They want revenge. They want to see the pain spread around equally.

DAVID GERROLD, Under the Eye of God

Death comes black and hard, rushing down on me from the future, with no possible chance of escape.

DAVID GERROLD, The Man Who Folded Himself

We have this sacred cow in our society that what the majority of people want is right—but is it? Our populace can't really be informed, not the majority of them—most people vote the way they have been manipulated and by the way they have responded to that manipulation—they are working out their own patterns of wishful thinking on the social environment in which they live.


Life has a peculiar habit -- once established, it stays. Sometimes it even thrives.

DAVID GERROLD, Under the Eye of God

You cannot avoid mortality. But you can choose your way of meeting it. And that is the most that any man can hope for.

DAVID GERROLD, The Man Who Folded Himself


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