Cover to Cover #208: Octavia Butler

FledglingA much more somber show this week, as we say farewell to Octavia Butler. A few weeks back we had the pleasure of interviewing Octavia and talking about her latest book Fledgling. Soon after that we learned that Octavia passed away - Octavia Butler at 58 years much too young.

Because of her untimely death we were left unsure of what to do with the conversation where she talks about her work, her life, and her failing health. After speaking with several of her fans (including ourselves), we have decided to present the interview as it happened in this special tribute.

Octavia Estelle ButlerShe will be missed, and we wanted to give her fans one last chance to hear from this amazing writer, who managed to touch many lives with her work, extending beyond the realm of science fiction.


  1. Thank you so much for posting that. What a great interview! The sadness I felt hearing her discuss what she wanted to do was overwhelming though. I have started re-reading all of her books again and I remember the amazement I felt when I read these books for the first time. I was always on the lookout for new books by her and I cannot believe there will be no more. Thank you again for putting that interview out- as one of her fans I greatly enjoyed hearing it.

  2. Thanks for letting us hear this wonderful and oh so prophetic interview. Listening to her discuss the problems with her meds and how it was affecting her did more than just choke me up. We truly have lost a wonderful voice and it is a tragedy for those of who have read her and wanted more and for those who have yet to discover her works. Thanks again.

  3. Podakayne says

    just wanna thank you so very much for airing this show. i've read a few of Octavia's books and have loved them all. she is a pioneer par none. a woman taking the stand and voicing her inner voice thru the wonderful characters in her books is without equal. i also enjoyed the dramatization of her novel Kindred...wonderful piece. I wish Scifi would get those stories (from the audio theater, now defunct) and make a DVD available.

    we've lost a great writer...the fact that she's female as well as Black is yet another lost...i hope there is another writer out there waiting to step into her place.

    thanks again

  4. Really great interview. I agree with Amanda about the impact her medication had on her writing prior to her passing.

    Very sad, indeed.

    Thanks for deciding to air this.

  5. Though I never read any of Octavia's books, I am now inspired to seek out her works. Thank you guys. You're a class act.

    Perhaps the KAMN could do their next show on one of her works.

  6. Thank you for deciding to air this interview. I've only read Ms. Butler's Xenogenis trilogy, and I am afraid to read any more of her books because the ones I read got into my head so much I couldn't sleep. That's a sign of a good writer, and it is sad that she is no longer with us.

  7. Thanks for posting this. I was at her service and it was an amazing/funny/sad/deep event. I'd only met her once a year ago and I knew then she was in poor health but it never really sunk in that she might not be with us much longer. Now I'm starved for Octavia info.

  8. Thank you so much for the wonderful tribute and interview with Octavia E. Butler! I was not even aware of her death yet, but have wanted to hear from this great writer in her own voice for a long time and am so very grateful that you decided to go ahead and release your interview with her posthumously.

    The way she used science fiction to explore core aspects of human nature evolved my view of science fiction and has raised my expectations ever since. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you for the appreciation and respect you've shown for this very special writer.

  9. Thank you so much for airing the interview. I only heard of Octavia's death from your show. I started reading her books back around 1980 - I believe Kindred was the first I read. She always struck me an a unique, brilliant voice not only in science fiction, but in literature. She will be deeply missed.

  10. Thanks for airing the Butler piece. She was a big insipiration for writers of color like me, and her death is a big loss for everyone. I also provided links to other good coverage of her legacy back on my site, for any DP listeners who want to dig deeper. Thanks Mike and Evo.