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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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The Claus Effect

Dec 15, 2014

Ebook edition of The Claus Effect available today

My first novel, written with David Nickle, is finally available in ebook form, thanks to ChiZine Publications

The Claus Effect ebookThere came a dark December when David Nickle and I got fed up with jolly Santa and all the false cheer of this God of Consumerism, and decided to do something about it.  (Actually, it was summer and we were on writer's retreat in the country, but this version plays better, don't you think?)  The result was a short story, The Toy Mill, that subsequently won Canada's 1993 Aurora Award for best short spec-fic story of the year.  

A few years later we resurrected cold dead Claus in a short novel, which we wrote together over a weekend for the 3 Day Novel Contest.  The result was The Claus Effect which, while it didn't win the contest, was published by Tesseract Books in 1997.  

Fueled by a diet of chocolate-covered coffee beans, lack of sleep and an unremitting mix-tape loop of nauseatingly peppy Christmas jingles, The Claus Effect emerged from our first-generation laptops as a hallucinatory ode to the fall of Soviet Russia, the depradations of consumerism, to all the world's lost children and lost dreams, and the bizarre, terrifying figure at the center of this cyclone--his red greatcoat flapping, his beard whipped by glacial cold:  our fever-dream of timeless, pitiless, relentless Claus.

You can buy The Claus Effect in ebook form now thanks to ChiZine Publications.

Jun 03, 2009

Monstrous Affections is ready for pre-order

David Nickle's short story collection is creepy and fun. You'll want it

Monstrous AffectionsIn the interest of full disclosure, let me say right off the bat that I've written an award-winning short story and a novel with David Nickle.  I consider him one of the finest horror writers around, and in combination we've crafted some pretty weird stuff; but by temperament David's always been a short fiction writer.  His best pieces are small, intricately-crafted, and often disturbing glimpses of humanity's dark side.  Now, he's finally collected some of them into a book you can buy.  The book is Monstrous Affections.

David's work is by turns horrific, touching, and wickedly funny--sometimes all at the same time.  (Consider a vampire-as-special-needs-kid story where the poor misunderstood vampire toddler is swarmed by righteous preschoolers and--well, you can imagine.)  David's got a blog you can check out, The Devil's Exercise Yard, which is lots of fun, and of course you can still find copies of the novel we wrote together, The Claus Effect, which is basically a James Bond thriller with Santa Claus as the super-villain.

Monstrous Affections is available now for pre-order from the Horror Mall (as warm and cuddly a website as you can imagine).  The book will be released on Halloween of 2009; but by ordering it now, you send a strong signal to the publisher and other interested parties that you're interested in David's work.  And, if you later forget that you've put in the order, you'll have a pleasant little surprise in your mailbox around Halloween (and it won't be a stick or somebody's left ear!  Although, who knows, you might get that too).

Dec 01, 2008

In time for Christmas - The Claus Effect returns

My first novel is back and available

About ten years ago, David Nickle and I collaborated on a comic adventure entitled The Claus Effect.  This was a first novel for both of us, and it did very well.  But, you know, you expect that over time these things fade.  So imagine my surprise and delight when David told me the other day that there's a considerable stack of Claus Effects available in downtown Toronto--specifically at the modestly-named World's Biggest Bookstore just north of the Eaton Centre.  This is both excellent news and fantastic timing, since TCE is, after all, a Santa Claus story--albeit a Santa Claus who's psychotic and bent on world destruction.  David and I had tons of fun writing this little epic, and now's your chance to read it in all its cynical glory.

Sometimes, books last.  Ten years on the shelves is pretty good.

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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)

     β€œAn 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. ”
    β€”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."