Becoming Ray Bradbury chronicles the making of an iconic American writer. Jonathan R. Eller measures the impact of the authors, artists, illustrators, and filmmakers who stimulated Ray Bradbury's imagination throughout his first three decades. Unprecedented access to Bradbury's personal papers and other private collections provides insight into his emerging talent through his unpublished correspondence, his rare but often insightful notes on writing, and his interactions with those who mentored him during those early years. _x000B__x000B_This biography follows Bradbury's development from avid reader to maturing author, making a living writing for pulp magazines. Bradbury's correspondence documents his frustrating encounters with the major trade publishing houses and his earliest unpublished reflections on the nature of authorship. Eller traces the sources of Bradbury's very conscious decisions, following the sudden success of The Martian Chronicles and The Illustrated Man, to voice controversial political statements in his fiction, and he highlights the private motivations behind the burst of creative energy that resulted in the classic novel Fahrenheit 451._x000B__x000B_These largely unexplored elements pave the way to a deeper understanding of his more public achievements, providing a biography of the mind, the story of Ray Bradbury's self-education and the emerging sense of authorship at the heart of his boundless creativity.