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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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Sep 30, 2013

Preorder Metatropolis: Green Space now!

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Release date is October 15, 2013

The third in our audiobook series of speculations about cities, ecosystems, and the intersection of human and non-human ambition, Metatropolis: Green Space, will be coming out this month. You can pre-order it from this pageMetatropolis: Green Space

Green Space takes up the story of the Metatropolis world a generation after the last set of stories. This time, we've got some of the best talent in current SF: the inestimable Jay Lake and Ken Scholes are editing and contributing, and as well Seanan McGuire, Toby Buckell, Mary Robinette Kowal and Elizabeth Bear also supplied stories. Oh, and me too. This is the most complex and audacious Meta yet; I think you'll be impressed. 

Oct 26, 2012

Metatropolis 3: Green Space

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Finally we can reveal what our little team's been working on for months now

The first Metatropolis audiobook, published by, edited by John Scalzi and authored by myself, Elizabeth Bear, Toby Buckell and  Jay Lake,  was a roaring success--if you consider two subsequent print editions plus a Hugo nomination successful. The sequel, Metatropolis: Cascadia, did even better, garnering the project an Audie Award. Now we're proud to announce a third installment in the series, Metatropolis: Green Space, because, we just haven't exhausted all the amazing possibilities of this future.

Cascadia was edited by the inestimable Jay Lake, and for Green Space it'll be him and Ken Scholes doing duty. Like Cascadia, Green Space will be graced with a work by the amazing Mary Robinette Kowal and joining us, Seanan McGuire. Of course Jay, Ken and  the usual suspects from the first volume will also contribute (excepting John Scalzi, who's too busy riding the wave of RedShirts--more power to him). 

We're going even further into the future this time, to track down the implications of the bizarre yet possible world we developed in the previous two volumes. This will be an audiobook project too, of course. The details, of course, are secret, but watch this space for announcements as we draw closer to the publication date.

...Although I'll reveal one thing: my contribution, this time, will not be another Gennady Malianov story. I have other plans for him, in a nearby publishing ecosystem affiliated with The Mongoliad...

Jun 07, 2012

METAtropolis: Cascadia wins an Audie Award

This was a team effort

METAtropolis: CascadiaI just received word from that our followup to Metatropolis, Metatropolis: Cascadia has won the 2012 Audie Award for Best Original Production!

The Audies have been awarded annually by the Audio Publisher's Association since 1996. The gala award ceremony for this year's awards was held last night.

Metatropolis: Cascadia is a collection of novella-length works, written by myself, Jay Lake, Mary Robinette Kowal, Tobias S. Buckell, Elizabeth Bear and Ken Scholes, and set in the world of Metatropolis. It embraces and extends the ideas of the first anthology, and in its audiobook incarnation, the stories were read by cast members from Star Trek.

So, if you've been thinking lately that you want to listen to an award-winning story of mine that's read in a particularly gonzo faux-Russian accent by Jonathon Frakes, Cascadia is the best place to go.

Jay, Mary, Toby, Bear, and Ken: thank you, and congratulations.

Feb 28, 2012

"Deodand" and Metatropolis: Cascadia nominated for Audie Award

June 5 at the New York Historical Society

Nominated again! This time it's for Metatropolis: Cascadia, the second audiobook project set in the near-future world of the Cities. This volume features stories by me, Jay Lake, Mary Robinette Kowal, Elizabeth Bear, Ken Scholes, and Toby Buckell. You might remember that the first Metatropolis was nominated for a Hugo Award, so this continues the tradition and it's pretty exciting!

Here's the full roster of nominees under the Best Original Work category:

  • Macbeth: A Novel by A.J. Hartley and David Hewson, narrated by Alan Cumming (Audible, Inc.)
  • METAtropolis: Cascadia by Jay Lake, Mary Robinette Kowal, Elizabeth Bear, Ken Scholes, Karl Schroeder, and Tobias S. Buckell, narrated by Rene Auberjonois, Kate Mulgrew, Wil Wheaton, Gates McFadden, Jonathan Frakes and LeVar Burton (Audible, Inc.)
  • The New Adventures of Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer, Vol. 3 by Max Allan Collins and Mickey Spillane, narrated by Stacy Keach and a full cast (Blackstone Audio)
  • Prayers: A Personal Selection by various authors, narrated by Michael York (eChristian, Inc)
  • Solaris by Stanislaw Lem, narrated by Alessandro Juliani (Audible, Inc.)
  • The Witches of Lublin—Collector's Edition by Ellen Kushner, Elizabeth Schwartz and Yale Strom, narrated by Ellen Kushner and a full cast (SueMedia Productions)

This is a pretty solid lineup. What really scares me is that we're up against one of the idols of my youth, Stanislaw Lem, whose Solaris has been made into movies at least twice, and stands the test of time as a true classic of SF. Yikes.

The gala and awards ceremony will be held on June 5. I've got it on my calendar and will be crossing my fingers and toes. 

Oct 26, 2010

METAtropolis: Cascadia - The Star Trek Connection

Check out the narrators for our stories in the new SF audiobook

METAtropolis: CascadiaFinally.  We've been sitting on this piece of news for months now; it's a relief to be able to tell you that the new SF audiobook, METAtropolis: Cascadia (sequel to the Hugo-nominated METAtropolis) will be narrated entirely by Star Trek alumni!  I'm delighted to have Jonathon Frakes narrate my contribution, "Deodand."  I've been a fan of Frakes's vocal work ever since he played David Xanatos on the animated series Gargoyles.

Having these actors perform our stories adds an extra element of fun to an already playful and innovative project.  Here's the complete lineup, in order of appearance:

  • THE BULL DANCERS by Jay Lake
    Narrated By: Rene Auberjonois (“Odo”)
  • WATER TO WINE by Mary Robinette Kowal
    Narrated By: Kate Mulgrew (“Capt. Kathryn Janeway”)
  • BYWAYS by Tobias S. Buckell
    Narrated By: Wil Wheaton  (“Wesley Crusher”)
  • CONFESSOR by Elizabeth Bear
    Narrated By: Gates McFadden (“Dr. Beverly Crusher”)
  • DEODAND by Karl Schroeder
    Narrated By: Jonathan Frakes (“Cmdr. William Riker”)
    Narrated By: LeVar Burton (“Geordi La Forge”)


Oct 18, 2010

METAtropolis: Cascadia arrives November 16

Being the Canadian in the group, I've written my story about Vancouver

METAtropolis: CascadiaThe world gets stranger; and as it does, the people of Cascadia increasingly band together against the pressures and threats represented by the rest of the world.  In METAtropolis: Cascadia, Elizabeth Bear, Tobias Buckell, Jay Lake, Mary Robinette Kowal, Ken Scholes, and I have teamed up to bring you a kaleidoscopic view of the future Northwest. Nominally a sequel to our Hugo-Award nominated audiobook METAtropolis, this venture into the future of the Pacific Northwest is edited by Jay Lake.  

What's the connection between this volume and the previous one?  Well, here's a hint, from the official description of the project:

As the mid-20th Century approaches, the Pacific Northwest has been transformed -- politically, economically, and ecologically -- into the new reality of Cascadia. Conspiracies and secrets threaten the tenuous threads of society. The End of Days seems nearer than ever. And the legend of the mysterious Tygre Tygre looms large. 

These are the stories: 

  • THE BULL DANCERS by Jay Lake 
  • WATER TO WINE by Mary Robinette Kowal
  • BYWAYS by Tobias S. Buckell
  • CONFESSOR by Elizabeth Bear
  • DEODAND by Karl Schroeder


Don't expect a rigorously cross-referenced, totally consistent "shared world."  Ours is not a unified view of the future--in fact, there is no such thing as "the" future in the vision of the the world that we share.  Cascadiopolis is not a looking glass, but a shattered mirror, and a signpost that points, not to one future, but to many.

METAtropolis: Cascadia will be available in audiobook format starting November 16, 2010.

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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."