Stuart James Byrne (born October 26, 1913) is an American screenwriter and writer of science fiction and fantasy. He published under his own name and the pseudonyms Rothayne Amare, John Bloodstone, Howard Dare, and Marx Kaye (a house pseudonym)
Byrne was born in St. Paul, Minnesota Later, he recalled, “I was in there early enough to see magic lantern slides instead of movies, to watch the little man in the black suit climb his ladder to light our gas lamp out front, and in the early twenties I was excited by whisperings of a thing called radio!” Favorite fiction memories of the time included Grimm's Fairy Tales, Alice in Wonderland, L. Frank Baum's Oz stories, the Rover Boys, the Boy Allies, Gernsback science-fiction, and “the life-changing impact of the Edgar Rice Burroughs books.”
At the age of twelve, he moved with his family to California. In his teen years, his interest in science fiction continued. He also became an avid amateur astronomer. Years later, he recalled that “many a summer night … were spent in awe … in the Pleiades and the great Orion Nebula, or surfing the moons of Jupiter and rings of Saturn. In fact at fifteen I was grinding parabolic mirrors for my amateur telescope.”
In the 1930s, he married Joey and fathered two children, Richard and Joanne. He earned an M.A. at UCLA. He published his first science fiction story, entitled “Music of the Spheres” in Amazing Stories in 1935. It told how a young man sacrificed his life to send a passenger spaceship away from a fatal encounter with the sun. In their capsule review of the book, Bleiler and Bleiler state, “The story, which is purple in writing, now considers the sensations of the young man as he approaches death in the sun, fancying that he hears the music of the spheres.”
In the 1940s and 1950s, Byrne published in Science Stories, Amazing Stories, Imagination (magazine), and Other Worlds (magazine).
He was especially noted as the creator of Michael Flanagan, the hero of three stories that appeared in Amazing Stories: “The Land Beyond the Lens,” “The Golden Gods,” and “The Return of Michael Flannigan,” all listed as by John Bloodstone. The first two of these stories were collected as Godman (spelled “Godman!” on the cover) in 1970. According to Byrne's later reminiscence, the name “John Bloodstone” was suggested by Ray Palmer to fool Howard Browne, the editor of Amazing, who had requested that Palmer write a story about a picture showing a man going through some kind of lens. Palmer passed the job over to Byrne, but eventually confessed the switch to Browne.
In 1955, Byrne became known as the author of an unpublishable new Tarzan novel called Tarzan on Mars via an editorial called “Tarzan Never Dies,” by editor Ray Palmer, in Other Worlds Science Stories magazine. The novel could not be published because Palmer was unable to get authorization from the estate of Edgar Rice Burroughs.
As a screenwriter, Byrne wrote for the “Men into Space” TV show in 1959 and 1960. He is credited with writing the episode entitled “Quarantine” (1959) and providing the story for the one entitled “Contraband” (1960). He received credit for the story of the 1971 film called “The Deserter” as well as the original story and screenplay for the 1972 film “The Doomsday Machine.”. According to Bleiler and Bleiler, he was also a screenwriter for the 1975 film Journey into Fear, although he is not so credited in the IMdb online database.
Byrne reverted to the Bloodstone pseudonym for the publication of his original paperback novel Thundar. This vivid novel of the adventures of Michael Storm, also known as Thundar, on earth in the far future is one of Byrne's best. After a framing device concerning Michael Storm's diaries, the story begins with Storm's adventures in the Peruvian mountains searching for the legendary time-gate of Viricocha. According to Byrne, “The scenes and locale of the opening adventure in the Peruvian Andes are authenticated by the fact that I spent some years in those mouintains, following the trails of Pizarro while guided by archaic Spanish manuscript” If the style seems reminiscent of that of Edgar Rice Burroughs, it may not be surprising. Byrne said, “An ERB attorney once suggested to me that I try writing my own ERB-style fantasy adventures using my own characters. The result was Thundar - Man of Two Worlds, written also in the ERB classical fantasy style, under my fantasy pen name, John Bloodstone.”
In 1964 Stuart and Joeys Daughter gave birth to a son named Eric. In 1974 Stuart and Joey's son, Richard had a son with his wife Ann on August 12th 1974, they named him Anthony. Richard and Ann had another son, Jonathan 2yrs and 2 days apart on August 14th 1976. All together Stu “Ba” Byrne had 3 male grandchildren. He now has 3 great grand children Tara, Bodhi Padme, and Shaman Zoe. 2 female and 1 male great grandchildren. Strong Bloodline
In the 1970s, Byrne also worked as a translator on the Perry Rhodan series from German to English. He is credited as co-author with Clark Dalton of the two-part story called “Test Flight to Eden” (1975), which appeared in two consecutive Perry Rhodan books. When there were financial problems publishing Perry Rhodan books due to a change in the exchange rate between German and US currencies, Byrne undertook to write the Star Man series, of which 11 appeared in print, published by Forrest J. Ackerman's Master Publicationsref>Byrne, Stuart J., 2010 phone interview with publisher Jean Marie Stine, Futures Past Editions. The first story was the Supermen of Alpha.
Also in the 1970s, Byrne tried his hand at Gothic writing from the first-person female point of view[. The result was The Visitation, originally published in 1977, and republished as Hoaxbreaker in 2003.