Emil Petaja; Science Fiction Author

Emil Petaja, 85, a writer of science fiction and fantasy who is best known for a series of popular books based on the Kalevala, the Finnish epic poem. Born in Montana to parents of Finnish descent, he began his career in the 1940s writing short stories for pulp magazines. A prolific storyteller who sometimes wrote under the name Theodore Pine, his work appeared in pulps like Weird Tales, Fantastic Adventures, Crack Detective Stories and Western Action. During the 1950s, he also worked as a professional photographer in San Francisco and Sausalito. He later ran a rare book shop in San Francisco and collected movie memorabilia. After the death of his friend, the legendary fantasy artist Hannes Bok, Petaja published a volume of Bok's poetry and three portfolios of his artwork. On Thursday at his home in San Francisco.

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