Joe Haldeman

Joe Haldeman
Haldeman at Finncon 2007
Haldeman at Finncon 2007
Born (1943-06-09) June 9, 1943 (age 76)
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States
Pen nameRobert Graham[1]
GenreScience fiction
Literary movementMilitary sci-fi
Notable worksThe Forever War

Joe William Haldeman (born June 9, 1943) is an American science fiction author. He is best known for his novel The Forever War (1974). That novel, and other of his works, including The Hemingway Hoax (1991) and Forever Peace (1997), have won major science fiction awards, including the Hugo Award and Nebula Award.[2]

He was awarded the SFWA Grand Master for career achievements.[2][3] In 2012 he was inducted as a member of the Science Fiction Hall of Fame.[4]

Many of Haldeman's works, including his debut novel War Year and his second novel The Forever War, were inspired by his experiences related to serving in the Vietnam War. Wounded in combat, he struggled to adjust to civilian life after returning home.


Haldeman was born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.[5] His family traveled and he lived in Puerto Rico, New Orleans, Washington, D.C., Bethesda (Maryland), and Anchorage (Alaska) as a child. He had to repeatedly start classes as a new kid in local schools.

Gay Haldeman at Worldcon 75 in Helsinki in 2017

In 1965, Haldeman married Mary Gay Potter, known as "Gay Haldeman". He received a BS degree in Physics and Astronomy from the University of Maryland in 1967.[6]

He was immediately drafted into the United States Army, where he served as a combat engineer in Vietnam. He was wounded in combat and received a Purple Heart.[7] His wartime experience inspired his first novel War Year. In addition, in his later books such as The Hemingway Hoax and Old Twentieth, he continued to explore through fiction the experience of combat soldiers in Vietnam and other wars, both during the wars and after return home.

In 1975, he received an MFA degree in Creative Writing from the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop.[8]

Haldeman resides alternately in Gainesville, Florida and Cambridge, Massachusetts. Since 1983, he has been an Adjunct Professor teaching writing[9][10] at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. MIT serves as the setting for his 2007 novel, The Accidental Time Machine. Haldeman is also a painter.[11]

In 2009 and 2010, Haldeman was hospitalized for pancreatitis.[12][13]

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