Ian McDonald (British author)

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Ian McDonald
Ian McDonald at SFeraKon 2010 in Zagreb
Ian McDonald at SFeraKon 2010 in Zagreb
Born1960 (age 57–58)
Manchester, England, United Kingdom
OccupationNovelist
NationalityScottish and Irish
GenreScience fiction
Website
ianmcdonald.livejournal.com
For several other people called Ian McDonald or a similar spelling, see Ian McDonald.

Ian McDonald (born 1960) is a British science fiction novelist, living in Belfast. His themes include nanotechnology, postcyberpunk settings, and the impact of rapid social and technological change on non-Western societies.

Early life[edit]

Ian McDonald was born in 1960, in Manchester, to a Scottish father and Irish mother. He moved to Belfast when he was five and has lived there ever since. He lived through the whole of the 'Troubles' (1968–99), and his sensibility has been permanently shaped by coming to understand Northern Ireland as a post-colonial[1] society imposed on an older culture. He became a fan of SF from childhood TV, and began writing when he was 9.[citation needed]

Career[edit]

McDonald sold his first story to a local Belfast magazine when he was 22, and in 1987 became a full-time writer.[2] He has also worked in TV consultancy within Northern Ireland, contributing scripts to the Northern Irish Sesame Workshop production of Sesame Tree.[citation needed]

McDonald's debut novel was Desolation Road (1988), which takes place on a far future Mars in a town that develops around an oasis in the terraformed Martian desert.[3] He published a sequel, Ares Express, in 2001.[4]

Published between 1995 and 2000, the novels Chaga (US title Evolution's Shore) and Kirinya, with the novella Tendeléo's Story, form the 'Chaga Saga', which chronicles the effects of an alien flora introduced to Earth, and also analyses the AIDS crisis in Africa. The protagonist is Ulster journalist Gaby McAslin, whose outsider's eye both observes the African landscape and sees what the "UN quarantine zone" is doing to Kenya and Kenyans. Gaby's story, with that of her daughter, continues in Kirinya. Tendeléo's Story is seen through the eyes of a young Kenyan girl who escapes to the UK, only to be deported back to Kenya as an unwanted alien.

The image of the unstoppable wave of transformation was nicked from [1982 Star Trek movie] The Wrath of Khan: it's the Genesis device, slowed down, and once I had that, it became a rich source of metaphors: for colonialism, new technology, globalisation, change, death. If the Chaga is colonialism, it's a unique kind that allows the people of the poor South to use and transform it to meet their needs and empower themselves: it's a symbiosis.[5]

McDonald's River of Gods (2004) is set in mid-21st-century India; it won the BSFA award, and was nominated for a Hugo Award and a Clarke Award. Brasyl (2007) is set in the 18th and 21st centuries in Lusophone South America; it won the BSFA award,[6] and was nominated for a Hugo Award and the Warwick Prize for Writing. McDonald began his Everness series of young adult fiction novels in 2011 with Planesrunner.[7][8] He said in a 2014 interview, "I didn't want to get stuck doing the same SF books over and over, successful though they may be. I didn't want to keep writing books about the developing economy of the year—India, Brazil. I could feel myself getting trapped in that."[9] He has written two Everness sequels, Be My Enemy (2012),[10][11] and Empress of the Sun (2014).[12]

McDonald published Luna: New Moon, the first volume of a proposed science fiction duology, in 2015.[9][13][14] It explores the dangerous intrigue that surrounds the five powerful families who control industry on the Moon.[9] McDonald said of the novel in August 2014, "I’m still writing about developing economies, it’s just that this one happens to be on the Moon."[9] Before critics called the novel "Game of Thrones in space",[13][15][16] McDonald himself dubbed it "Game of Domes" and "Dallas in space".[9] Luna was optioned for development as a television series before its release.[15][17] The sequel, Luna: Wolf Moon, was released in March 2017.[18] A third novel, Luna: Moon Rising,[19] is due for publication in March 2019.[20] McDonald previously published the novelette "The Fifth Dragon", a prequel to Luna in the same setting, in the 2014 anthology Reach for Infinity.[9][21][22]

McDonald's Time Was, a time travel romance novella about two men, was released in April 2018.[23]

Awards[edit]

Won[edit]

Nominations[edit]

Ian McDonald at Eurocon/Swecon 2011 in Stockholm.
  • Arthur C. Clarke Award – Best Novel (1990): Desolation Road[27]
  • Locus Fantasy Award (1992): King of Morning, Queen of Day[28]
  • Arthur C. Clarke Award – Best Novel (1993): Hearts, Hands, and Voices[29]
  • British Science Fiction Award (1992): Hearts, Hands, and Voices[28]
  • World Fantasy Award for Best Short Fiction (1994) : Some Strange Desire
  • Philip K. Dick Award – Best Novel (1994) : Scissors Cut Paper Wrap Stone[30]
  • British Science Fiction Association Award – Best Novel (1994) : Necroville[30]
  • British Science Fiction Association Award – Best Novel (1995): Chaga[31]
  • The John W. Campbell Memorial Award (1996): Chaga[32]
  • Arthur C. Clarke Award – Best Novel (2005): River of Gods[33]
  • Hugo Award – Best Novel (2005): River of Gods[33]
  • Hugo Award – Best Novel (2008): Brasyl
  • Warwick Prize for Writing (2008/9) and reached prize longlist announced in November 2008: Brasyl
  • The John W. Campbell Memorial Award (2008): Brasyl[34]
  • Locus SF Award (2008): Brasyl[34]
  • Nebula Award (2008): Brasyl[34]
  • Hugo Award – Best Novel (2011): The Dervish House
  • Locus Award – Best SF Novel (2011): The Dervish House
  • Arthur C. Clarke Award – Best Novel (2011): The Dervish House
  • British Science Fiction Association Award – Best Novel (2015): Luna: New Moon[35]

Selected bibliography[edit]

Desolation Road series[edit]

Chaga saga[edit]

India in 2047[edit]

Everness series[edit]

Luna series[edit]

Other novels[edit]

Blog and online interviews[edit]

  • "Cyberabad". Archived from the original on 25 June 2007.
  • "Interview with Ian McDonald".
  • "Locus Online: Ian McDonald interview excerpts".
  • "Ian McDonald - SFeraKon 2010 GoH intervju - Fantasy Hrvatska".
  • "Episode 72: Live with Gary K. Wolfe and Ian McDonald".

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gevers, Nick (October 2011). "Ian McDonald interviewed". Interzone. Archived from the original on 2 February 2014. Retrieved 26 February 2016.
  2. ^ John Lennard, Ian McDonald: Chaga / Evolution's Shore (Tirril: Humanities-Ebooks, 2007), p. 7.
  3. ^ a b Doctorow, Cory (2 July 2009). "Ian McDonald's brilliant Mars book, DESOLATION ROAD, finally back in print". Boing Boing. Retrieved 7 September 2015.
  4. ^ a b Braak, Chris (10 May 2010). "Far-Future Martian Charm and Railway Adventure In Ares Express". io9. Retrieved 7 September 2015.
  5. ^ Gevers, Nick (2001). "Future Remix: an interview with Ian McDonald". Infinity Plus. Archived from the original on 16 March 2017. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  6. ^ a b "Science Fiction & Fantasy Books by Award: 2007 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved 3 May 2009.
  7. ^ a b "Children's Book Review: Planesrunner by Ian McDonald". Publishers Weekly. 2011. Retrieved 25 September 2018.
  8. ^ a b "Planesrunner by Ian McDonald". Kirkus Reviews. 12 October 2011. Retrieved 28 September 2018.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g "Ian McDonald: On Xenoforming". Locus. 24 August 2014. Retrieved 7 January 2016.
  10. ^ a b "Be My Enemy by Ian McDonald". Kirkus Reviews. 18 July 2012. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  11. ^ a b "Ian McDonald – Be My Enemy (Everness Book Two) cover art and synopsis reveal". 25 August 2012. Archived from the original on 4 January 2014. Retrieved 3 October 2018 – via Upcoming4.me.
  12. ^ a b "Ian McDonald – Empress of the Sun announced! Cover art and synopsis revealed". 23 April 2013. Archived from the original on 14 July 2013. Retrieved 3 October 2018 – via Upcoming4.me.
  13. ^ a b c Alexander, Niall (21 September 2015). "The Long Run: Luna: New Moon by Ian McDonald". Tor.com. Retrieved 12 December 2015.
  14. ^ a b Doctorow, Cory (22 September 2015). "Ian McDonald's Luna: New Moon - the moon is a much, much harsher mistress". Boing Boing. Retrieved 26 September 2015.
  15. ^ a b Liptak, Andrew (22 August 2015). "Ian McDonald's Forthcoming Luna: New Moon Optioned For Television". io9. Retrieved 12 December 2015.
  16. ^ Roberts, Adam (2 October 2015). "Luna: New Moon by Ian McDonald review – the moon as wild west frontier". The Guardian. Retrieved 7 October 2015.
  17. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (17 August 2015). "Shane Brennan To Adapt Ian McDonald's Sci-Fi Book Luna As TV Series". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 10 October 2015.
  18. ^ a b "Cover Reveal for Ian McDonald's Luna: Wolf Moon". Tor.com. 19 January 2016. Retrieved 7 February 2016.
  19. ^ a b Liptak, Andrew (29 December 2017). "The best science fiction, fantasy, and horror novels of 2017". The Verge. Retrieved 2 January 2018.
  20. ^ a b "Luna: Moon Rising – Ian McDonald". Macmillan. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  21. ^ McDonald, Ian (1 September 2015). "The Fifth Dragon". Tor.com. Retrieved 13 December 2015.
  22. ^ Alexander, Niall (12 June 2014). "Step into the Stars: Reach for Infinity, ed. Jonathan Strahan". Tor.com. Retrieved 13 December 2015.
  23. ^ Liptak, Andrew (31 March 2018). "Read an excerpt from Luna author Ian McDonald's heartbreaking new time-travel romance". The Verge. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  24. ^ "Science Fiction & Fantasy Books by Award: 1991 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved 29 March 2009.
  25. ^ "Science Fiction & Fantasy Books by Award: 2004 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved 3 May 2009.
  26. ^ Publications, Locus. "Locus Online News » McDonald Wins Gaylactic Spectrum". www.locusmag.com. Archived from the original on 10 October 2016. Retrieved 10 October 2016.
  27. ^ "Science Fiction & Fantasy Books by Award: 1990 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved 29 March 2009.
  28. ^ a b "Science Fiction & Fantasy Books by Award: 1992 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved 3 May 2009.
  29. ^ "Science Fiction & Fantasy Books by Award: 1993 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved 29 March 2009.
  30. ^ a b "Science Fiction & Fantasy Books by Award: 1994 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved 29 March 2009.
  31. ^ "Science Fiction & Fantasy Books by Award: 1995 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved 3 May 2009.
  32. ^ "Science Fiction & Fantasy Books by Award: 1996 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved 29 March 2009.
  33. ^ a b "Science Fiction & Fantasy Books by Award: 2005 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved 29 March 2009.
  34. ^ a b c "Science Fiction & Fantasy Books by Award: 2008 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved 29 March 2009.
  35. ^ "Announcing the 2015 BSFA Awards Shortlist". Tor.com. 7 February 2016. Retrieved 27 March 2016.

External resources[edit]