George Clayton Johnson

George Clayton Johnson bigraphy, stories - American writer

George Clayton Johnson : biography

July 10, 1929 –

George Clayton Johnson (born July 10, 1929 in Cheyenne, Wyoming) is an American science fiction writer most famous for co-writing the novel Logan’s Run with William F. Nolan (basis for the 1976 film). He is also known for his work in television, writing screenplays for such noted series as The Twilight Zone, such as "Nothing in the Dark", "Kick the Can", "A Game of Pool" and "A Penny for Your Thoughts", and Star Trek, the first aired episode of the series, "The Man Trap". He also wrote the story on which the 1960 and 2001 films Ocean’s Eleven were based. His work has appeared in numerous anthologies by editors such as Dennis Etchison, Jason V Brock, and Christopher Conlon. He was the proprietor of Cafe Frankenstein, and co-created the comic book series Deepest Dimension Terror Anthology with cartoonist Jay Allen Sanford for Revolutionary Comics, which adapted his stories from The Twilight Zone (including unproduced teleplays) and stories by his friends and contemporaries such as Larry Niven, Robert Bloch, and Dennis Etchison. The entire library of his work, including Logan’s Run and Jessica’s Run: The New Sequel to Logan’s Run are represented on his behalf by WBMT Literary, Film and Television.


Twilight Zone episodes

George Clayton Johnson wrote the following stories for The Twilight Zone series:

  • The Four of Us Are Dying (1960) (story)
  • Execution (1960) (story)
  • The Prime Mover (inadvertently credited solely to Charles Beaumont)
  • A Penny for Your Thoughts (1961) (teleplay)
  • A Game of Pool (1961) (teleplay)
  • Nothing in the Dark (1962) (teleplay)
  • Kick the Can (1962, also featured in the 1983 movie The Twilight Zone: The Movie) (teleplay)
  • Ninety Years Without Slumbering (1963) (story, as Johnson Smith)

Star Trek episode

  • The Man Trap (1966, first aired episode of the series)

Alfred Hitchcock Presents

  • I’ll Take Care of You (1959) (story)

Film appearances

Charles Beaumont: The Life of Twilight Zone’s Magic Man (As himself. JaSunni Productions, LLC, 2009. Directed by Jason V Brock.)

The AckerMonster Chronicles! (As himself. JaSunni Productions, LLC, 2012. Directed by Jason V Brock.)


Born in a barn, he had to repeat the sixth grade and dropped out of school entirely in the eighth. He briefly served as a telegraph operator then draftsman in the United States Army, enrolled at the Alabama Polytechnic Institute (now Auburn University) under the G.I. Bill, quit to return to his travels around the U.S.A., working as an draftsman, before becoming a writer.

In 1960 the first story Johnson ever wrote served as the basis for the Rat Pack movie Ocean’s 11, although most of the details were changed for the film. He joined the Southern California School of Writers that included Theodore Sturgeon, William F. Nolan, Charles Beaumont, Richard Matheson and Ray Bradbury. Through them he met Rod Serling, to whom he sold his first story ("All of Us Are Dying", produced as "The Four of Us Are Dying") and, later, his first teleplay ("A Penny for Your Thoughts").