|Born||April 14, 1954|
|Pen name||Vincent Omniaveritas (in fanzine Cheap Truth)|
|Alma mater||University of Texas at Austin (B.A., Journalism, 1976)|
Michael Bruce Sterling (born April 14, 1954) is an American science-fiction author known for his novels and short fiction and editorship of the Mirrorshades anthology. In particular, he is linked to the cyberpunk subgenre.
Sterling's first science-fiction story, Man-Made Self, was sold in 1976. He is the author of science-fiction novels including Schismatrix (1985), Islands in the Net (1988), and Heavy Weather (1994). In 1992, he published his first non-fiction book, The Hacker Crackdown: Law and Disorder on the Electronic Frontier.
Sterling is one of the founders of the cyberpunk movement in science fiction, along with William Gibson, Rudy Rucker, John Shirley, Lewis Shiner, and Pat Cadigan. In addition, he is one of the subgenre's chief ideological promulgators. This has earned him the nickname "Chairman Bruce". He was also one of the first organizers of the Turkey City Writer's Workshop, and is a frequent attendee at the Sycamore Hill Writer's Workshop. He won Hugo Awards for his novelettes Bicycle Repairman (1996) and Taklamakan (1998). His first novel, Involution Ocean, published in 1977, features the world Nullaqua where all the atmosphere is contained in a single, miles-deep crater. The story concerns a ship sailing on the ocean of dust at the bottom and hunting creatures called dustwhales. It is partially a science-fictional pastiche of Moby-Dick by Herman Melville.
In the early 1980s, Sterling wrote a series of stories set in the Shaper/Mechanist universe: the Solar System is colonized, with two major warring factions. The Mechanists use a great deal of computer-based mechanical technologies; the Shapers do genetic engineering on a massive scale. The situation is complicated by the eventual contact with alien civilizations; humanity eventually splits into many subspecies, with the implication that some of these vanish from the galaxy, reminiscent of the singularity in the works of Vernor Vinge. The Shaper/Mechanist stories can be found in the collection Crystal Express and the collection Schismatrix Plus, which contains the novel Schismatrix and all of the stories set in the Shaper/Mechanist universe. Alastair Reynolds identified Schismatrix and the other Shaper/Mechanist stories as one of the greatest influences on his own work.
In the 1980s, Sterling edited the science fiction critical fanzine Cheap Truth under the alias of Vincent Omniaveritas. He wrote a column called Catscan for the now-defunct science fiction critical magazine SF Eye.
He contributed a chapter to Sound Unbound: Sampling Digital Music and Culture (The MIT Press, 2008) edited by Paul D. Miller a.k.a. DJ Spooky.
Since October 2003 Sterling has blogged at "Beyond the Beyond", which is hosted by Wired along with contributions to other print and online platforms like the Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction.
His most recent novel (as of 2013) is Love Is Strange (December 2012), a Paranormal Romance (40k).
He has been the instigator of three projects which can be found on the Web -
Sterling has coined various neologisms to describe things that he believes will be common in the future, especially items which already exist in limited numbers.
In the beginning of his childhood he lived in Galveston, Texas until his family moved to India. Sterling spent several years in India and has a fondness for Bollywood films. In 1976, he graduated from the University of Texas with a degree in journalism. In 1978, he was a Dungeon Master for a Dungeons & Dragons game whose players included Warren Spector, who cited Sterling's game as a major inspiration for the game design of Deus Ex. In 2003 he was appointed Professor at the European Graduate School where he is teaching summer intensive courses on media and design. In 2005, he became "visionary in residence" at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California. He lived in Belgrade with Serbian author and film-maker Jasmina Tešanović for several years, and married her in 2005. In September 2007 he moved to Turin, Italy. He also travels the world extensively giving speeches and attending conferences. Both Sterling and artist and musician Florian-Ayala Fauna are sponsors for V. Vale's RE/Search newsletter.