COVID Check-In with Samuel R. Delany

Virtual Memories Show
COVID Check-In: Samuel R. Delany

“I may be one of those people who operates fairly well in chaos. So the very fact that there’s chaos around gives me something to fight against and focus on what I’m doing.”

Happy birthday to legendary science fiction author Samuel R. Delany! Chip checks in from Philadelphia, where he’s found himself working on a new piece of fiction. We talk about comparisons with his AIDS-era experiences, his partner Dennis’s willingness to share him with Rachel Maddow, his recent binge of Tiger King on Netflix and his disappointment in Da Vinci’s Demons, his new website,, the advantages of turning into his grandmother, his virtual birthday plans, and more. Give it a listen! And go check out!

Listen to the conversation! Then check out the archives for more conversations from The Before Times.

You can listen to all of my COVID Check-In episodes at The COVID-19 Sessions.

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About our Guest

Samuel R. Delany is the author of dozens of books, including Dhalgren and The Mad Man, and the best-selling nonfiction study Times Square Red, Times Square Blue. He lives in Philadelphia and recently retired from teaching at Temple University. The Lambda Book Report chose Delany as one of the fifty most significant people of the past hundred years to change our concept of gayness, and he is a recipient of the William Whitehead Memorial Award for a lifetime’s contribution to lesbian and gay literature.

Credits: The conversation was recorded remotely via Zencastr. I used a Heil PR-40 Dynamic Studio Recording Microphone feeding into a Cloudlifter CL-1 and a Mackie Onyx Blackjack 2×2 USB Recording Interface. All processing and editing done in Adobe Audition CC. Photos of Chip by Bill Wood (left, center) and Tom Kneller (right), so they’re on my instagram. (Left is a 3/31/20 proof-of-life pic, fwiw.)

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