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I've made my first novel, Ventus, available as a free download, as well as excerpts from two of the Virga books.  I am looking forward to putting up a number of short stories in the near future.

Complete novel:  Ventus


To celebrate the August, 2007 publication of Queen of Candesce, I decided to re-release my first novel as an eBook. You can download it from this page. Ventus was first published by Tor Books in 2000, and and you can still buy it; to everyone who would just like to sample my work, I hope you enjoy this version.

I've released this book under a Creative Commons license, which means you can read it and distribute it freely, but not make derivative works or sell it.

Book Excerpts:  Sun of Suns and Pirate Sun

I've made large tracts of these two Virga books available.  If you want to find out what the Virga universe is all about, you can check it out here:

Major Foresight Project:  Crisis in Zefra

In spring 2005, the Directorate of Land Strategic Concepts of National Defense Canada (that is to say, the army) hired me to write a dramatized future military scenario.  The book-length work, Crisis in Zefra, was set in a mythical African city-state, about 20 years in the future, and concerned a group of Canadian peacekeepers who are trying to ready the city for its first democratic vote while fighting an insurgency.  The project ran to 27,000 words and was published by the army as a bound paperback book.

If you'd like to read Crisis in Zefra, you can download it in PDF form.

Personal tools


Here you can find downloadable resources such as photos, videos, reviews and recent activities

Table of Contents

Look to the NAVIGATION menu on the left side of this page for folders containing photos and other media, interview links, and a full list of my published works.



Contact me

About Me

I am a professional futurist as well as one of Canada's most popular science fiction and fantasy authors. I divide my time between writing fiction and analyzing, conducting workshops and speaking on the potential impacts of science and technology on society.  As the author of ten novels I've been translated into about a dozen languages.  In addition to my more traditional fiction, I've pioneered a new mode of writing that blends fiction and rigorous futures research—my influential short novels Crisis in Zefra (2005) and Crisis in Urlia (2011) are innovative ‘scenario fictions’ commissioned by the Canadian army as study and research tools.  In 2011 I attained a Masters degree in Strategic Foresight and Innovation from OCAD University in Toronto.


I'm Canadian, born in Brandon, Manitoba in 1962. Brandon's about a two-hour drive north of Minot, North Dakota, and situated right in the center of the continent. It's snowy and cold in the winter, and beset with mosquitoes in the summer--but Brandon has a university with a renowned music school. I grew up in an atmosphere of summer festivals--madrigalia and an annual film festival that holds some of my fondest memories of small town summer nights.

Growing up, I was hugely influenced by my Mennonite background, but also by my progressive family. My mom, Anna Schroeder, published two novels around the time I was born, Year of Discovery and The Secret of His Presence. Since these sat in our bookshelves along with works by Andre Norton, Dorothy Sayers, Agatha Christie and many others, I just assumed that everybody's mom wrote books, and that I could too. So when I was 14, I started writing. I completed my first novel when I was 17.

Of course, my fanatical focus on writing meant I had little patience for school, and I dropped out that same year. I eventually got my GED, but my lack of higher education dogged me throughout my twenties and thirties.

I moved to Toronto in 1986, just in time to participate in a renaissance in Canadian science fiction and fantasy happening at that time. This flowering occurred simultaneously across the country, as previously-isolated authors got email accounts and started discovering one another. I helped set up the first national email listserver for SF&F authors, was a founding member of SF Canada and president for a time.

In 1988 I helped found a writer's group now known as the Cecil Street Irregulars. Our mentor was Judith Merril, and past and present members include Cory Doctorow, Peter Watts, David Nickle and Michael Skeet. I wrote my first published novel with David, The Claus Effect, and the workshop have hugely influenced my development as a writer, and a person.

By Al Bogdan, 2013I married Janice Beitel in April 2001--we tied the knot in a tropical bird sanctuary on the shore of the Indian Ocean, Kalbarri Western Australia.  Our daughter was born in May 2003. 

Around this time I began getting invitations to government-run foresight conferences in and around Ottawa, the nation's capital. I met some of the world's most prominent futurists and participated, as a writer, facilitator and later, analyst. When in 2009 OCAD University in Toronto offered a Master's degree in Strategic Foresight and Innovation, I jumped at the chance to go back to school, and finished the program in 2011. I'm now a card-carrying futurist as well as an SF writer.

I made my reputation writing far-future adventures, but being a parent in the era of climate change has forced me to reconsider my obligations. Starting with Stealing Worlds, I've refocused on near-future worlds, using what I've learned as a futurist to paint as accurate a picture of our prospects and perils while remaining (I hope) entertaining.


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About Me

I'm a member of the Association of Professional Futurists with my own consultancy, and am also currently Chair of the Canadian node of the Millennium Project, a private/public foresight consultancy active in 50 nations. As well, I am an award-winning author with ten published novels translated into as many languages. I write, give talks, and conduct workshops on numerous topics related to the future, including:

  • Future of government
  • Bitcoin and digital currencies
  • The workplace in 2030
  • The Internet of Things
  • Augmented cognition

For a complete bio, go here. To contact me, email karl at kschroeder dot com

Example: The Future of Governance

I use Science Fiction to communicate the results of actual futures studies. Some of my recent research relates to how we'll govern ourselves in the future. I've worked with a few clients on this and published some results.

Here are two examples--and you can read the first for free:

The Canadian army commissioned me to write Crisis in Urlia, a fictionalized study of the future of military command-and-control. You can download a PDF of the book here:

Crisis in Urlia

For the "optimistic Science Fiction" anthology Hieroglyph, I wrote "Degrees of Freedom," set in Haida Gwaii. "Degrees of Freedom" is about an attempt to develop new governing systems by Canadian First Nations people.

I'm continuing to research this exciting area and would be happy to share my findings.

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Coming on June 18, 2019

"Science fiction at its best."

--Kim Stanley Robinson

A Young Adult Scifi Saga

"Lean and hugely engaging ... and highly recommended."

--Open Letters Monthly, an Arts and Literature Review

Sheer Fun: The Virga Series

(Sun of Suns and Queen of Candesce are combined in Cities of the Air)

 “An adventure-filled tale of sword fights and naval battles... the real fun of this coming-of-age tale includes a pirate treasure hunt and grand scale naval invasions set in the cold, far reaches of space. ”
Kirkus Reviews (listed in top 10 SF novels for 2006)

"With Queen of Candesce, [Schroeder] has achieved a clockwork balance of deftly paced adventure and humour, set against an intriguing and unique vision of humanity's far future.
--The Globe and Mail

"[Pirate Sun] is fun in the same league as the best SF ever has had to offer, fully as exciting and full of cool science as work from the golden age of SF, but with characterization and plot layering equal to the scrutiny of critical appraisers."

"...A rollicking good read... fun, bookish, and full of insane air battles"

"A grand flying-pirate-ship-chases-and-escapes-and-meetings-with-monsters adventure, and it ends not with a debate or a seminar but with a gigantic zero-gee battle around Candesce, a climactic unmasking and showdown, just desserts, and other satisfying stuff."