Philip K. Dick is my favorite author and is a major inspiration in my own writing--on the academic side, I wrote a 111-page Bachelor's thesis entitled "The Black Iron Prison of Philip K. Dick"; on the creative side, a good number of my science fiction stories and novels deal with his themes (many of which I wrote before I had even heard of Philip K. Dick).

Who is he and why should I care?

Philip K. Dick is one of the most prolific and influential American science fiction authors; in his life time (1928-1982) he wrote over forty novels (mostly science fiction but some mainstream) as well as a handful of essays and a truckful of short stories, in addition to thousands of pages of letters and a mostly-unpublished philosophical journal ("The Exegesis") with a word count somewhere in the millions. Movies based directly on his novels and short stories include Blade Runner, Total Recall, Screamers, Barjo, Impostor, and Minority Report. Movies indirectly based on or in the style of his writing include The Matrix, Dark City, Fight Club, The Truman Show, eXistenZ, The Sixth Sense, Ghost in the Shell, and Avalon.

What does he write about?

Dick's main themes are "what is reality?" and "what is human?" This allows him to write about multiple levels of reality, artificial (virtual reality) worlds, false memory, higher or parallel planes of existence, time and space travel, cybernetics, and fake humans (androids).

Which of his books should I read?

My personal favorites (your mileage may vary)
A PKD reference list (publication info for books, stories, letters, and criticism/biography)
My PKD collection

So what's this about a thesis?

Click here to find out.

Where else can I find information?

Start with these PKD links.