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.
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.
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:
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.
We're touring for this one. Details below
Neal Stephenson's inspired vision to inspire a new generation to enter the sciences and engineering, the Hieroglyph Project, has launched its self-titled anthology. We held a book launch here in Toronto on Sept. 13, which was well attended, and will be doing more events over the next month, all across North America.
Here's what people are saying about Hieroglyph so far:
Goodreads (average rating of 4.6 out of 5 so far)
Slate (story excerpt)
io9 (Madeline Ashby's story excerpted)
There's going to be a lot more; this is just a sample. Meanwhile, we're doing launch events across the country. I'll be attending two more, myself: on October 2, I'll be in Washington, and we'll be discussing Hieroglyph at the World Bank Narrative Hackathon in Phoenix, AZ October 21-25th. Hope you can make one of those!
(My story in the anthology is "Degrees of Freedom," which is about a separatist Haida nation in the Pacific Northwest that uses new technologies of governance to render the current national and provincial governments in the region obsolete.)
The first episodes of the graphic novel version of SoS have been collected in a single volume. You can buy it now!
Run on over to Blind Ferret and you can pick up the print edition of Sun of Suns, Vol. 1. This volume collects the first episodes of the story. You'll meet all the main characters here: Hayden Griffin, our sullen hero; Lady Venera Fanning, mad princess and spymaster; Martor the ship's go-fer, and even the pirate Dentius and his men.
The script for this excellent adaptation is by Jeff Moss, the ink's by Guy Allen, and color by Michael Birkhofer.
This was an amazing project and I had great fun working with such talented artists to bring my visions of Virga to life. I hope you enjoy the result.
My latest "scenario fiction" for the Canadian military is out
Back in 2005, the Directorate of Land Strategic Concepts of National Defense Canada (that is to say, the army) hired me to write a short novel, which they named Crisis in Zefra, about future peacekeeping and the evolution of the military in the 21st century. Zefra did very well; you can learn more about it elsewhere on my site. In 2010, they commissioned a second project.
Crisis in Urlia is now published. You can read it online for free or download the PDF. Where Zefra concentrated on military evolution on the squad level, Urlia is about command-and-control, and includes a vision of a crowdsourced military that some might find downright shocking, as well as side forays into online nations and religions, post-agricultural food supplies, and 3d printed buildings.
These works view the future through a particular lens (that of the military) but include as broad (practically epic, in fact) synopsis as I could craft of all the changes facing humanity and our environment over the next thirty years or so. In terms of the rigour that went into them, they're probably my best science fiction.
Saturday, March 29 at 3, at Bakka Books here in Toronto
Fresh out of a dentist's appointment, I will be launching Lockstep at Bakka-Phoenix Books on Saturday, March 29 at 3:00. There'll be entertainment (me), copies of Lockstep to be signed and book-related ideas to be explained, and other novels to be bought (hint: we'll be breaking into the vault to offer some out-of-print hardcover editions of novels like Ventus and Permanence).
If you're really lucky you'll get to hear me do a reading with my mouth still frozen from the dentist. Major fun!
You can get to or contact Bakka-Phoenix here:
84 Harbord St., Toronto, Ontario M5S 1G5
It's a beautiful edition
The mass market paperback edition of The Sunless Countries will be released tomorrow, May 8, 2012. This book starts a new storyline, but brings in some old friends and definitely begins tying up the loose ends (and there are many) from the previous three books.
It's available now
Ashes of Candesce will hit the shelves on February 14, but meanwhile,Tor.com has an excerpt you can read online! I hope you like it.
Ashes brings together all the disparate plot threads from the first four books, and wraps them all up in one epic adventure. You'll encounter all the main characters from the previous books, and some surprising new ones. And, we finally get to see more than just a glimpse of the strange posthuman world that lies outside Virga.
The Virga series has been a great ride, and I hope you enjoy reading the cataclysmic ending as much as I did writing it.
I'm a Canadian author and futurist with ten published novels and twelve years of experience in strategic foresight. I write, give talks, and conduct workshops on numerous topics related to the future, including:
For a complete bio, go here.
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:
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.
“The most thought-provoking and interesting work of hard SF that
I've read in the past year."
"With paradigm shifts one inside another like a set of Russian dolls, this splendid novel propagates into a demolition derby of Big Ideas. Required post-human reading.”
—Scott Westerfeld, author of Uglies, Pretties, and Specials
“An astonishing saga. One helluva read!”
“Karl Schroeder has always had a knack for intelligent and provocative thought experiments disguised as space opera. Now he ups the ante with a fascinating riff on consensual [and conflicting] realities. Lady of Mazes contains more cool ideas than Ventus and Permanence combined.”