Ken MacLeod

A black and white photo of Ken from the shoulders up. He is a white man with short light-coloured hair, wearing a dark blazer

Ken MacLeod

Ken MacLeod (he/him) is a celebrated SF writer who, over the course of his career, has written 18 novels, and has won multiple BSFA and Prometheus Awards, in addition to being shortlisted by the Hugos, Nebulas, Locus Awards, and more. Ken writes everything from dystopian SF to space opera, and is known for work that’s as engaged with politics as it is with science.


Ken MacLeod was born in 1954 on the Isle of Lewis and now lives in Gourock on the Firth of Clyde. He has degrees in biological sciences, worked in IT, and is now a full-time writer. He is the author of eighteen novels, from The Star Fraction (1995) to Beyond the Hallowed Sky (2021) and many articles, short stories, and poems.

MacLeod’s work has also received critical acclaim. He has won three BSFA awards and three Prometheus Awards for various novels he has written, and his novels and short fiction have graced the short-lists of the Arthur C. Clarke, Nebula, Locus, Campbell Memorial, and Hugo Awards. His short, The Human Front, won the Sidewise Award for Alternate History in 2002.

His work has been widely translated and ranges from near-future dystopia to far-flung space opera, drawing on his first-hand knowledge of biological science, information technology, and political activism. An experienced speaker, event chair and organiser, he has given talks, workshops and readings at public events, libraries, universities and schools. He has taught science fiction writing at Moniack Mhor in Scotland, Arvon in England, and Clarion West in the US.

In 2009, he was Writer in Residence at the ESRC Genomics Policy and Research Forum at Edinburgh University, and in 2013 and 2014, he was Writer in Residence at the MA Creative Writing course at Edinburgh Napier University. He was Guest Selector for the SF strand at the 2017 Edinburgh International Book Festival.

In addition, the Science Fiction Foundation published an analysis of MacLeod’s work under the title The True Knowledge of Ken MacLeod (2003).

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