Wiki-Wednesday – Lisa Smedman

30 01 2008

Lisa Smedman

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Lisa Smedman
Born c 1959
North Vancouver, BC
Occupation novelist
Nationality Canadian.
Writing period 1997 –
Genres Science fiction and fantasy
Debut works The Lucifer Deck (1997)

Lisa Smedman (North Vancouver, British Columbia: born c. 1959) is a newspaper editor and a science fiction and fantasy novelist. Her most well-known novel is Extinction, set in the Forgotten Realms universe.


Lisa Smedman was born c.1959 and raised in North Vancouver, BC, Canada; a suburb of Vancouver.

She earned her BA in anthropology from the University of British Columbia and a journalism diploma from Langara College in Vancouver. After working at her first job as a typesetter for a local publisher, Smedman has spend her entire career as a reporter and editor at Vancouver-area weekly newspapers. She has worked at the Richmond Review, the Langley Times and Sounder magazine. Currently, she is an editor at the Vancouver Courier where she writes local history articles.

Smedman is described as “an earnest-looking brown-haired woman” who wears piercings and tattoos. She is “equally at home in the gym, in a funky … coffeehouse, at a meeting of fellow day-care moms or around a gaming table with a bunch of the guys from the Trumpeter Wargaming Club.”

Smedman lives in Ladner, British Columbia, another Vancouver suburb and her office is filled with bookshelves “jammed with paperback novels and reference books on science, archeology, Canadian history, the First World War, forensics, religion and mythology.” In the closet, neatly stacked floor to ceiling are gaming boxes.

Smedman has a young son whom she raises with her partner. The two women married in July 2004. Smedman has cats and pug dogs for pets.


Smedman is one of the most prolific science fiction and fantasy authors in Canada: the other being Ed Greenwood. She began writing her own stapled-together stories in elementary school. In 1981, she discovered Dungeons and Dragons and soon became a dungeon master.

By 1987, Smedman had become convention spokesperson for the 15th year of V-Con, the annual convention of the B.C. Science Fiction Association, that attracted about six hundred people.

In the late 1980s Smedman began to write for Dragon magazine which led to her writing her first gaming adventure for TSR, Inc. – the creators of Dungeons and Dragons – in 1993. After Dragon’s Crown was released, for the next three years,Smedman wrote ten more adventures for TSR.

Smedman’s first novel was published in 1997 and she used her own childhood to fashion a child protagonist who suddenly finds herself homeless on the streets after her middle-class family rejects her when she began morphing into a magical creature. Smedman wasn’t a magical creature but she was gay. Although Smedman says that her family is supportive and loving, “I have known people who came out as gay in their teens and were utterly rejected by their families. Because I’m also gay, it’s easy for me to imagine what they must have felt.”

That first novel, The Lucifer Deck, was set in the Roc‘s Shadowrun universe. Eight more books followed. Extinction set in the Wizards Of The Coast‘s Forgotten Realms universe made the New York Times bestseller list in 2004.

In 2004, Smedman’s 10th novel appeared and was her first entirely independent work. The Apparition Trail is an alternate-history fantasy which posits an 1884 Western Canada where the power imbalance between the First Nations and European settlers exists in a universe with magic and alternate physics.


  • Forgotten Realms
    • Heirs of Prophecy 2002
    • Venom’s Taste (House of Serpents, book one) 2004
    • Viper’s Kiss (House of Serpents, book two) 2005
    • Vanity’s Brood (House of Serpents, book three) March 2006
    • Extinction (War of the Spider Queen, book four) January 2004
    • Sacrifice of the Widow (Lady Penitent, book one) March 2007
    • Storm of the Dead (Lady Penitent, book two) out August 2007
    • Ascendency of the Last (Lady Penitent, book three) June 2008
  • Shadowrun
    • The Lucifer Deck
    • Blood Sport
    • Psychotrope
    • The Forever Drug
    • Tails You Lose
  • Other Books
    • The Apparation Trail 2004
    • Creature Catchers March 2007
    • From Boneshakers to Choppers: The Rip-Roaring History of the Motorcycle



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