Marion Zimmer Bradley

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Marion Eleanor Zimmer Bradley (June 3, 1930 – September 25, 1999) was an American author of fantasy novels such as The Mists of Avalon and the Darkover series, often with a feminist outlook. Her first child, David R. Bradley, and her brother, Paul Edwin Zimmer were also published science fiction and fantasy authors in their own right.



Born on a farm in Albany, New York, during the Great Depression, she began writing in 1949 and sold her first story to Vortex magazine in 1952. She was married to Robert Alden Bradley from October 26, 1949 until their divorce on May 19, 1964. They had a son, David Robert Bradley (1950–2008). During the 1950s she was introduced to the cultural and campaigning lesbian group the Daughters of Bilitis.

After her divorce Bradley married numismatist Walter H. Breen on June 3, 1964. They had a daughter, Moira Stern, who became a professional harpist and singer, and a son, Patrick Breen.

In 1965, Bradley graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas. Afterward, she moved to Berkeley, California, to pursue graduate studies at the University of California, Berkeley between 1965 and 1967. In 1966, she helped found and named the Society for Creative Anachronism and was involved in developing several local groups, including in New York after her move to Staten Island.

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