In the Image of God: Theme, Characterization, and Landscape in the Fiction of Orson Scott Card

By Michael R. Collings | Go to book overview

2
"To See the World the Poet's Way"

In the years since "Ender's Game" was voted the second most popular Analog novella for 1977, garnered a Hugo nomination as best novelette in 1978 (placing second in the final tabulation), and was instrumental in Card's receiving the 1978 John W. Campbell Award, Card has received the Edmond Hamilton--Leigh Brackett Memorial Award ( 1981, 1985), over a dozen Hugo and Nebula nominations and recommendations, double Hugo and double Nebula awards, and the World Fantasy award. And, as has already been suggested, from the beginning of his career Card was noteworthy not only for winning nominations and awards, but also for being unusually prolific--the latter characteristic at times working rather to his detriment. A fine novel such as Songmaster, for example, coming as it did at the end of an explosive series of novels, short stories, and short-story collections, was regarded by some as simply another in a long line of Card productions; excellence had apparently become the norm, and consequently the novel perhaps did not receive the critical attention or award nominations that it merited. Even more distressing, however, was the early criticism, articulated by at least one reviewer, that the quality of his work might improve if the quantity diminished.

Indeed, after 1980, his output seemed to slow, especially in science fiction and fantasy. For half a decade, he restricted his fiction primarily to novels: Hart's Hope ( 1983), The Worthing Chronicle ( 1983), A Woman of Destiny ( 1984), and Ender's Game

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