This afternoon I had the pleasure of attending a reading by Samuel R. Delany at the Walker Art Center. Delany has been one of my literary heroes since the late 1960s, when I picked up one of his early novels (Babel 17) and fell in love with his witty and extraordinarily observant writing. His 1976 novel Triton is one of my favorite SF works of all time. He was, and remains, a major influence on my work.
Delany, I am happy to report, did nothing to undermine my admiration for him. Whew!