Forrest J Ackerman, 92, the sometime actor, literary agent and magazine editor and full-time bon vivant who discovered author Ray Bradbury and was widely credited with coining the term "sci-fi," died Thursday at his Los Angeles home.
Although only marginally known to readers of mainstream literature, Mr. Ackerman was legendary in science-fiction circles as the founding editor of the pulp magazine Famous Monsters of Filmland. He was also the owner of a huge private collection of science-fiction movies and literary memorabilia.
His greatest achievement was likely discovering Bradbury, author of the literary classics Fahrenheit 451 and The Martian Chronicles. As a literary agent, Mr. Ackerman represented Bradbury, Isaac Asimov and numerous other science-fiction writers.
He said the term "sci-fi" came to him in 1954 when he was listening to a car radio and heard an announcer mention the word hi-fi. He used it in Famous Monsters of Filmland, which he edited for 25 years.