Dave Wolverton (1957-2022)

Writer Dave Wolverton, 64, who also wrote as David Farland, died January 14, 2022 in St. George UT after suffering a severe head injury falling down the stairs the previous day.

He was best known for his Runelords series, written as David Farland: The Sum of All Men (1998; published in the US as The Runelords), Brotherhood of the Wolf (1999), Wizardborn (2000), The Lair of Bones (2003), Sons of the Oak (2006),  Worldbinder (2007), The Wyrmling Horde (2008), and Chaosbound (2009). A final volume, A Tale of Tales, was reportedly in the works.

As Wolverton, he began publishing SF with “The Sky Is an Open Highway” (1985). “After a Lean Winter” (1986) was a Nebula Awards finalist. He won the Writers of the Future competition for “On My Way to Paradise” (1986), later expanded as debut novel On My Way to Paradise (1989), a finalist for the Philip K. Dick Award. He followed that with the Anee series, Serpent Catch (1991) and Path of the Hero (1993). He reworked the series as Spirit Walker (2014), Serpent Catch (2014), and Path of the Crushed Heart (2014) under the Farland name. Other Farland titles include The Golden Queen (1994) and sequels Beyond the Gate (1995) and Lords of the Seventh Swarm (1997), plus historical Company of Angels (2009) and YA thriller Nightingale (2012). From the late ’90s, he mainly wrote fantasy as Farland and numerous Star Wars tie-ins (among other media-related works) as Wolverton.

Wolverton was deeply involved with the Writers of the Future competition, ever since taking over some of A.J. Budrys’s duties in 1991. He co-edited Writers of the Future Volume VIII (1992) with Budrys, and edited the subsequent volumes, through number 37. He also wrote A Very Strange Trip (1999), a collaboration with L. Ron Hubbard based on the late author’s notes.

John David Wolverton was born May 15, 1957 in Springfield OR. He taught creative writing at Brigham Young University, where he hosted writing workshops. He also wrote for games and worked in the film industry. He is survived by his wife and son.

For more, see his entry in the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction.

2 thoughts on “Dave Wolverton (1957-2022)

  • January 14, 2022 at 3:27 pm

    Very sad news. Dave was so kind to Writers of the Future attendees over the years. He sat with me for a long time after my win, just the two of us, dispensing advice and answering questions. A lot of young writers are going to miss out on that generosity of spirit. Rest in peace, Dave.

  • February 14, 2022 at 9:45 am

    Super sad news. Dave was a member of our writers group in Salt Lake City very early on. The majority of folks in that group were later published by NYC pubbers. He also was a member of the author mutual help group Shoptalk. I loved his first novel and admired his ability to do both work-for-hire and be a fantasy author under the Farland pen name. He was a GREAT guy! Tom/T. Jackson King.


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