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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.

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shameless bragging

Feb 07, 2020

Stealing Worlds makes Locus's Year's Best list!

I don't get to brag very often, so I'll do it now: every one of my novels has made this list

Check out the Locus Annual Year's Best list, which covers science fiction and fantasy novels, novellas, and short stories, as well as horror and other genre fiction. The reviewers and critics at Locus generally pick 25 or so titles in each category, which considering the number of books and stories published every year, puts you in pretty rarified company if you make it.  I'm proud that all my books have made the list, and deeply proud that Stealing Worlds is in such good company this time. 

Feb 03, 2013

Ashes of Candesce makes Locus Magazine's annual recommended reading list

Every one of my novels published since 2000 has made Locus's annual list

...And that's eight for eight. Locus Magazine is the defacto industry-insider's publication for science fiction and fantasy. Locus has a cast of truly stellar reviewers and tracks everything to do with the industry--names, gossip, sales, film projects--as well as reviewing as much as they can of everything that comes out every year.

And, every year, they publish a list of recommended works. To quote from the site, this list is compiled in the following way:

This recommended reading list, published in Locus Magazine’s February 2013 issue, is a consensus by Locus editors and reviewers — Liza Groen Trombi, Gary K. Wolfe, Faren Miller, Jonathan Strahan, Russell Letson, Graham Sleight, Adrienne Martini, Carolyn Cushman, Tim Pratt, Karen Burnham, Gardner Dozois, Rich Horton, Paul Di Filippo, and others — with inputs from outside reviewers, other professionals, other lists, etc. Short fiction selections are based on material from Jonathan Strahan, Lois Tilton, Rich Horton, Gardner Dozois, David G. Hartwell, Ellen Datlow, Alisa Krasnostein, Paula Guran, and others.

I know some of these people, but have never met most of them. The list ranges from 15 to nearly thirty names on any given year. This makes it doubly astonishing that every single one of my novels (excepting The Claus Effect, that madcap romp through all things Christmasy that I wrote with David Nickle) has made the list. Wow.

Check out this year's list through the link above. It's great company to be in, as always.

Jul 31, 2009

August 26 will be Karl Schroeder day

...over at the Science Fiction Message Board

Cory alerted me to an interesting upcoming event:  The Science Fiction Message Board is hosting Author August, a month of discussions about particular science fiction writers--one per day.  Apparently I'm Mister August 26th (no, there will be no centerfold, unless you make one up yourself).  

The introductory description of the event is here, and the threads themselves will, I gather, be unraveling from the Author Central forum.  

This is pretty cool, although I'd be an idiot if I expected to necessarily be flattered by what (if anything) gets said about me on the day.  The sensible thing for me, in fact, would probably be to steer clear of reading it altogether--but you may want to drop by. 

And, if you do, be kind. :-)

Jul 13, 2009

Back from Sci Foo

Nice campout at Google--with tyranosaurs

I spent the weekend with 200 other ubergeeks at the Googleplex, inventing then executing the agenda for the Sci Foo Camp 2009 un-conference.  My own talk was on "The Rewilding:  An Alternative to the Technological Singularity," and it was pretty well rececived by the tough crowd of intellectual heavyweights I pitched it to.

Other people who were there that weekend included Maureen McHugh (who has written some of my favourite SF and whom I finally go to mee!), and intellectuals/power brokers from diverse fields, such as George Dyson, Esther Dyson, Louise Leakey, Peter Diamandis, Elon Musk, Lee Smolin, George Smoot, Lawrence Lessig, etc.  There was an early rumour that Bjork was supposed to attend, but she never materialized, at least not in any recognizable form. 

Sessions included one on new data supporting an iminent mass extinction from global warming; spaceflight speculations by Musk and Diamandis; new findings in neurobiology and cognitive science, radical animal design, etc.  Way too much for me to be able to attend them all, of course; but I'm familiar with that problem from our SciBarCamp experiments in Toronto.  The Google campus was a good setting for the event, and they had built us a "holodeck" that ran Google Earth (and Mars) on a set of wraparound big-screen HD tvs.  The food at the campus is excellent, by the way--and yes, they do have a tyranosaur on their lawn.

 I met tonnes of people, and I'll catch up with you all individually rather than in this space.  ...I guess, in trying to summarize how weird and wonderful the weekend was, I'll just give one example:  there was a guy who'd brought a hand-held mirror that shows you your reflection unreversed.  (No, it's not a device, it's just a mirror.) 

Jun 17, 2009

The Year's Best and the Year's Best

I'm in both

Dozois years bestI published three short stories last year in addition to my novel Pirate Sun and the novella "To Hie from Far Cilenia."  You can find one of those stories, "The Hero," in The Year's Best Science Fiction, 26th Annual Edition, edited by Gardner Dozois.  I'm the company of Paolo Bacigalupi, Stephen Baxter, Elizabeth Bear, Aliete de Bodard, James L. Cambias, Greg Egan, Charles Coleman Finlay, James Alan Gardner, Dominic Green, Daryl Gregory, Gwyneth Jones, Ted Kosmatka, Mary Robinette Kowal, Nancy Kress, Jay Lake, Paul McAuley, Ian McDonald, Maureen McHugh, Sarah Monette, Garth Nix, Hannu Rajaniemi, Robert Reed, Alastair Reynolds, Mary Rosenblum, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Geoff Ryman, Gord Sellar, and Michael Swanwick.  "The Hero" was originally published in Eclipse Two, edited by Jonathon Strahan.

Years best SF 14As if that wasn't enough, the story "Mitigation," which I wrote with Tobias Buckell, has been published in The Year's Best SF 14, edited by David Hartwell and Kathryn Cramer.  Our company in this volume includes Cory Doctorow, Neil Gaiman, Kathleen Ann Goonan, Alastair Reynolds again and, naturally, Michael Swanwick.  "Mitigation" first appeared in Fast Forward Two, edited by Lou Anders.

Since "To Hie from Far Cilenia" is up for a Hugo award as part of the METAtropolis audiobook project, I'd say 2008 was a pretty good year.

Mar 30, 2009

Nice review of the Virga books

From Porter Square Books in Boston

I'm just emerging into that phase of the Virga series when the books can be reviewed as a whole; and of course this won't seriously happen for another couple of years, when Ashes of Candesce is finally out.  But it's starting, and a very nice, and highly favourable review of the series as a thing in itself is now online at the Porter Square Books blog.

You can read the review yourself if you're interested; I was just very proud to read the following bit (talking about Queen of Candesce):

Following the machinations of Venera and her enemies really did remind me of Frank Herbet’s Dune; it is a rare treat to read about smart people outsmarting other smart people.

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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."