William H. Patterson, Jr. is the foremost scholar of the life and works of the celebrated science fiction writer Robert A. Heinlein. In the mid 1980s, Patterson began to apply formal critical methods to the study of science fiction, including particularly the works of Heinlein, who is known as the “dean of science fiction.” Patterson founded the Heinlein Journal in 1997 and co-founded the Heinlein Society with Virginia Heinlein in 1998. He has also been designated The Heinlein Scholar of the Heinlein Prize Trust.
With Andrew Thornton he co-authored The Martian Named Smith: Critical Perspectives on Robert Heinlein’s Stranger in a Strange Land (2002). He is currently completing a two-volume biography of Heinlein, the first volume of which, Robert A. Heinlein: In Dialoge with His Century: Learning Curve, 1907-1948, was published in 2010.
Patterson has presented scholarly papers at conferences of the Popular Culture Association and the American Comparative Literature Association, as well as in The Heinlein Journal and Extrapolation. His website is is available here.