"Reed College required a thesis for a Bachelor's degree. Normally a Bachelor's is sort of like being stamped 'Prime US Beef.' They just walk you through, hand out the diplomas and you fill in your name later on." -- David Eddings
David Eddings (July 7, 1931 – June 2, 2009) was an American author who wrote several best-selling series of epic fantasy novels.
"All social workers want is to get everyone involved in a programme. Because a programme provides full employment for three generations of social workers. And they mess up.""Call it my little gesture toward social conscience, but I like to think I'm teaching a certain number of people to read. Now that sounds pretentious!""I get up at an unholy hour in the morning my work day is completed by the time the sun rises. I have a slightly bad back which has made an enormous contribution to American literature.""I hesitate to predict whether this theory is true. But if the general opinion of Mankind is optimistic then we're in for a period of extreme popularity for science fiction.""I taught in a small teacher's college for three or four years, at which point all the administrators got a pay raise and the teaching faculty didn't.""I wrote a novel for my degree, and I'm very happy I didn't submit that to a publisher. I sympathize with my professors who had to read it.""I've fallen back on this periodically, although I must say that getting out of the grocery business ranked right up there with getting out of the army as one of the happier experiences of my life.""If the general opinion is pessimistic, fantasy is going to hold its own.""The unfortunate thing about working for yourself is that you have the worst boss in the world. I work every day of the year except at Christmas, when I work a half day.""This is terrible, when a writer is bored by his own work, but it was a real bomb and had reached the point where I couldn't even stand to look at it any more.""When they ran out of cadre men they gave me my very own platoon and said, 'Here are 63 men, try to keep as many of them alive as you possibly can.' That was one of the more harrowing experiences of my life."
Born in Spokane, Washington, in 1931, Eddings grew up near Puget Sound. In the Rivan Codex, he described a good day in Seattle as "when it isn’t raining up;" rain became a consequent feature in many of his novels. After graduating from high school in 1949, he worked for a year before majoring in speech, drama and English at junior college. Eddings displayed an early talent for drama and literature, winning a national oratorical contest, and performing the male lead in most of his drama productions. He graduated with a BA from Reed College in 1954 and an MA from the University of Washington in 1961. He wrote a novel for a thesis at Reed College before being drafted into the U.S. Army.
After several years as a college lecturer, a failure to receive a pay raise drove Eddings to leave his job, move to Denver and seek work in a grocery store. He also began work on his first published novel High Hunt, the story of four young men hunting deer. Like many of his later novels, it explores themes of manhood and coming of age. Convinced that being an author was his future career, Eddings moved to Spokane where he once again relied on a job at a grocery shop for his funds. He worked on several unpublished novels, including Hunseeker’s Ascent, a story about mountain climbing, which was later burned as Eddings claimed it was, "a piece of tripe so bad it even bored me." Most of his attempts followed the same vein as High Hunt, adventure stories and contemporary tragedies. The Losers, tells the story of God and the Devil, cast in the roles of a one-eyed Indian and Jake Flood. It was not published until June 1992, well after Eddings's success as an author was established, although it was written in the seventies.
Eddings's call to the world of fantasy came from a doodled map he drew one morning before work. This doodle later became the geographical basis for the world of Aloria, but Eddings did not realize it until several years later. Upon seeing a copy of Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings, in a bookshop, he allegedly muttered, "Is this old turkey still floating around?" and was shocked to learn that it was in its seventy-eighth printing. Eddings realized that the world of fantasy might hold some promise for his talents, and immediately began to annotate his previously forgotten doodle.
On January 26, 2007 it was reported that Eddings accidentally burned about a quarter of his office, next door to his house, along with his Excalibur sports car, and the original manuscripts for most of his novels. He was flushing the fuel tank of the car with water when he lit a piece of paper and threw it into the puddle to test if it was still flammable.
On February 28, 2007, David Eddings' wife, Leigh Eddings (born Judith Leigh Schall), whom he married in 1962, died following a series of strokes. She was 69.
Eddings resided in Carson City, Nevada, where he died of natural causes on June 2, 2009.Dennis, Eddings' brother, confirmed that in his last months, Eddings had been working on a manuscript that was unlike any of his other works, stating "It was very, very different. I wouldn’t call it exactly a satire of fantasy but it sure plays with the genre". The unfinished work, along with his other well renowned manuscripts, will go to his alma mater, Reed College in Portland, Ore., along with a bequest of $18 million to fund "students and faculty studying languages and literature." Eddings also bequeathed $10 million dollars to National Jewish Medical and Research Center in Denver for pediatric-asthma treatment and research. Edding's wife Leigh had asthma throughout her life before she died in 2007.
Eddings' wife, Leigh Eddings, was uncredited as co-author on several of his early books, but he later acknowledged that she contributed to them all. She was a credited co-author starting in the mid-1990s.
The Belgariad and The Malloreon
The Belgariad is Eddings' first fantasy series; The Malloreon is the sequel. The books follow the adventures of Belgarion, Polgara, Belgarath, and their companions.
The Belgariad series
Pawn of Prophecy (1982)
Queen of Sorcery (1982)
Magician's Gambit (1983)
Castle of Wizardry (1984)
Enchanters' End Game (1984)
The Malloreon series
Guardians of the West (1987)
King of the Murgos (1988)
Demon Lord of Karanda (1988)
Sorceress of Darshiva (1989)
The Seeress of Kell (1991)
Books related to The Belgariad and The Malloreon
Belgarath the Sorcerer (1995) (Prequel) with Leigh Eddings
Polgara the Sorceress (1997) (Prequel) with Leigh Eddings
The Rivan Codex (1998) with Leigh Eddings
The Elenium and The Tamuli
The Elenium and its sequel The Tamuli feature the Pandion Knight Sparhawk and his comrades.
The Elenium series
The Diamond Throne (1989)
The Ruby Knight (1990)
The Sapphire Rose (1991)
The Tamuli series
Domes of Fire (1992)
The Shining Ones (1993)
The Hidden City (1994)
The Dreamers series
The Dreamers series tells the story of a war between the Elder Gods and their allies and an entity known as the Vlagh.
The Elder Gods (2003) with Leigh Eddings
The Treasured One (2004) with Leigh Eddings
Crystal Gorge (2005) with Leigh Eddings
The Younger Gods (2006) with Leigh Eddings
Standalone fantasy novels
The Redemption of Althalus (2000) with Leigh Eddings, is a standalone novel about a thief who mends his ways.
High Hunt (1973) - a story revolving around a hunting expedition that spirals out of control.
The Losers (1992) - a story about a man struggling to rebuild his life after an accident.
Regina's Song (2000) with Leigh Eddings - a thriller about a woman after the murder of her twin sister.