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Downloads

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

interviews

Aug 17, 2013

My 2013 Worldcon schedule

It's a busy one, though I'll only be there for Saturday and Sunday

Keeping in the spirit of dumping all kinds of news at once, here's my schedule for the 2013 World Science Fiction Convention in San Antonio, Texas, which is taking place over the Labour Day weekend. It's a whirlwind visit as I need to get back to Toronto to continue futuring for my new employer, Idea Couture. Luckily, I've got lots going on. If I'm lucky, I'll even get there early enough Friday night to take over the bathtub bar at the Tor party. We'll see. Meanwhile, here's my itinerary:

Reading: Karl Schroeder

Saturday 10:00 - 11:00

Karl Schroeder 


Autographing: Ellen Datlow, Josh Rountree, Karl Schroeder, Lynne M. Thomas

Saturday 12:00 - 13:00

Ellen Datlow , Lynne M. Thomas , Josh Rountree  , Karl Schroeder 


Consensual Reality: Your Relationship to the World

Saturday 15:00 - 16:00

Google Glasses, augmented reality, kinetic gaming, tactile transmission systems. These and other new technologies are on the horizon to transmogrify sense and sensation. Google glasses are the first step to putting an overlay on the reality we see. This opens the door to hiding the ugly and changing what we see. When we do this socially it leads to possible consensual reality as in the works of Vinge, Schroeder and others. What will such capability mean in reality? Has science fiction explored the societal consequences?

Edie Stern (M), Yasser Bahjatt  , Walter Jon Williams  , Ben Bova  , Karl Schroeder 


Kaffeeklatsch: Nancy Kress, Edward M. Lerner, Karl Schroeder

Saturday 17:00 - 18:00

Edward M. Lerner  , Nancy Kress  , Karl Schroeder 


Speed-Forecasting Workshop

Sunday 10:00 - 13:00

We will do a quick analysis of the future, with the end product being four scenarios that highlight different possibilities. Come take your work to the future!

Karl Schroeder


Have We Lost the Future?

Sunday 14:00 - 15:00

Where science fiction once looked to the future as the setting for speculation, nowadays the focus seems to be on alternate pasts, fantasy worlds, or consciously "retro" futures. We're no longer showing the way to what things might be like. We discuss whether this is connected to the general fear of decline and decay in the English-language world -- or has science fiction simply run out of ideas?

Karen Burnham (M), Brenda Cooper  , Karl Schroeder  , Willie Siros  , Derek Kunsken 


As You Know, Jim...

Sunday 15:00 - 16:00

Exposition is never easy. How can writers communicate the details of a setting, magical system or incredible scientific breakthrough without losing half their audience? What makes a readers eyes glaze over and how do you avoid it?

Michelle Sagara (M) , Tanya Huff  , Karl Schroeder  , Jack McDevitt  , Walter Jon Williams 


First Contact Without a Universal Translator

Sunday 17:00 - 18:00

How do we establish a common conceptual base to communicate with another species? Sure, we have numbers and the hydrogen atom in common, but how far would that get us in a world of beings who share none of our sensory apparatus?

Lawrence M. Schoen (M) , Paige E. Ewing  , Karl Schroeder 

By the way, if you want to plan your days, the entire schedule is or will shortly be online at http://www.lonestarcon3.org/guests/appearing.shtml.  

That's it. See you all there!

 

Jan 28, 2013

New interview with me

Filed Under:

In which I talk about some current obsessions

Over at the Speculating Canada website, Derek Newman-Stille has a new interview with me in which he asks some pretty interesting questions--such as what science fiction can do that mainstream literature can't. I've answered to the best of my ability, and I had a lot of fun doing this interview. 

As a teaser, check out the following exchange:

Spec Can: What can Speculative Fiction do that “realist” fiction can’t?

Karl Schroeder: Describe the real world.

Realism, in literature, painting, and science, is just the rule of the lowest common denominator.  It’s not actually a successful stance in science, for instance; strictly realist approaches to quantum mechanics fall into paradox pretty quickly. Realism achieves some stability in understanding the world by simply discarding 99% of all the available data (whether that be measurements, opinions, or political stances). That’s what the muggles do in the Harry Potter stories: it’s not actually that they lack some magical gene or other that wizards have (like the midichlorians in Star Wars); it’s that they literally can’t see the magical in the world around them. They only think about, and therefore can only see, those things they’ve decided are ‘real.’ What’s that saying? “If all you’ve got is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” That’s muggle thinking. (And by the way, having the Force be created by midichlorians makes the Star Wars universe a very muggle place.)

May 12, 2012

Me on Singularity Weblog

...And a surprise review on The Atlantic's website

Nikola Danaylov sat down in my living room last week and grilled me for over an hour about my thoughts on technology, the Singularity, and my alternatives to it. The whole interview can be seen here, or downloaded as a podcast; be warned, it covers a huge amount of ground and I don't get much chance to fully flesh out the ideas I'm throwing around. Hence much of it may sound like gibberish. 

There is much that I told Nikola that bears extensive expansion and I would love to lay out these ideas (eg. about the Technological Maximum and the Rewilding) in a book... but only when somebody pays me to write it. I am sadly unable to take on a project like that without backing anymore; I'd starve before I finished the thing.

Lady of MazesMeanwhile, others seem to be discovering my work. There's a new review of Lady of Mazes on The Atlantic's website! It's a pretty awesome exploration of the key themes of the novel; I have to say that, seven years after the novel came out, people finally seem to be ready for the conversation that it proposes. Should we control the technologies that influence our lives, or do we willy-nilly spin the roulette wheel of technological change and simply accept what comes out of it? This is the question Lady of Mazes asks; there could be no more relevant a question for the present, yet when the book first came out, there wasn't much said about that aspect of the story. People didn't really... get it. Now, it seems they're starting to.

Feb 13, 2012

Lawrence Schoen asks me about food

Filed Under:

...And I answer

During the interview he did with me at SFCOntario last fall, Lawrence Schoen asked me what my favourite food was. My answer, and the quirky little conversation around it, can now be found on Lawrence's site here

Short answer: anything Indian. 

Oct 17, 2011

My tentative SFCOntario schedule

I'll be Canvention Guest of Honour this year. Here's what's up

This is a very preliminary schedule and may be subject to change, amendment, eliding, obfuscation or eructation at any time. In particular, I may add spontaneous interpretive dance sessions in any empty slot I find. 
 

Opening Ceremonies – Fri. 7 PM, Ballroom BC

Canvention Guest of Honour interview – Sat. 11 AM, Ballroom BC (Laurence Schoen as interviewer.)

Linguistics for Fiction  – Sat. 3 PM, Solarium
From Tolkien to Game of Thrones writers and moviemakers have paid attention to the development of created languages.  What goes into creating an authentic language? How do biology and psychology help determine language? This panel will introduce you to the study of languages on Earth and to what may determine the development of language on an alien world. (Matthew Johnson(M), Alex Pantaleev, Lawrence Schoen, Karl Schroeder)

Kaffeeklatsch – Sat. 4:00 PM, Room 207

Sun of Suns Graphic Novel Sneak Peek – Sat. 6 PM, Parkview

Aurora Award Banquet – Sun. 11 PM Shade Restaurant 

Aurora Award Ceremony – Sun. 12 PM. I'll be MC'ing.

Cyberpunk: Is It Dead? Did It Ever Really Exist?- Sun. 2 PM Ballroom
A
Bruce Sterling once said that if you claim to be writing cyberpunk, you aren’t. Others who have been linked to the cyberpunk movement have disavowed any knowledge of its actions. What is this literary movement in science fiction, and why do writers seem to either run towards or away from the label? (Kathryn Allan, Simon McNeil, Ira Nayman(M), Karl Schroeder, Allan Weiss)

Closing Ceremonies – Sun. 3 PM, Ballroom BC

Jun 05, 2009

Interview at Grinding to Valhalla

Filed Under:

A different perspective on storytelling from the gaming crowd

I've got a new interview up at Grinding to Valhalla.  This is a gaming site, and as such they asked a couple of perceptive questions that I'd never be asked by literary interviewer.  

Thanks, Randolph!

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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."
    --SFRevu.com


    "...A rollicking good read... fun, bookish, and full of insane air battles"
    --io9.com


    "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."
    --Locus