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Steven Barnes

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Steven Barnes
Born (1952-03-01) March 1, 1952 (age 72)
Alma materLos Angeles High School
Pepperdine University
SpouseTananarive Due

Steven Barnes (born March 1, 1952) is an American science fiction, fantasy, and mystery writer. He has written novels, short fiction, screen plays for television, scripts for comic books, animation, newspaper copy, and magazine articles.

Early life and education


Barnes, was born on March 1, 1952, in Los Angeles, California. He has had a varied education, including a secondary education at Los Angeles High School. He continued at Pepperdine University, majoring in communication arts.[1]



Barnes wrote several episodes of The Outer Limits and Baywatch. His "A Stitch In Time" episode of The Outer Limits won an Emmy Award. He also wrote the episode "Brief Candle" for Stargate SG-1 and the Andromeda episode "The Sum of Its Parts". Barnes's first published piece of fiction, the 1979 novelette "The Locusts", was written with Larry Niven, and was a Hugo Award nominee.[2][3] Barnes subsequently collaborated with Niven on several other books, including three books with both Niven and Jerry Pournelle. Barnes said he clashed politically with the two conservative writers but enjoyed working with them, calling it "a tremendous learning opportunity".[4]

Barnes's alternate history novel Lion's Blood won the 2003 Endeavour Award. His 2004 Star Wars tie-in novel The Cestus Deception was a New York Times bestseller.

Together with his wife, Tananarive Due, and actor Blair Underwood, Barnes won the 2009 NAACP Image Award for outstanding Literary Work - Fiction for In the Night of the Heat: A Tennyson Hardwick Novel.[5]

Personal life


Barnes is married to Tananarive Due, a writer.[4] The couple live in Los Angeles and host a video blog together. They also taught a course together at UCLA called "The Sunken Place: Racism, Survival & Black Horror" that experienced a surprise visit from Get Out director Jordan Peele. The course is now available as a webinar.[6] Barnes has a daughter from his first marriage and a son from his current marriage.

Barnes is also an avid practitioner of martial and physical arts. He began studying in 1969.[1] He is a black belt in Kenpo Karate (BKF style), and Kodokan Judo. He holds an instructor certificate in Wu Ming Ta, and has an instructor candidate ranking in Filipino Kali stick and knife fighting. He is an advanced student in Jun Fan kickboxing (Bruce Lee method under Dan Inosanto), and is an instructor in Wu-style tai chi under Hawkins Cheung.

He is an intermediate student in self-defense pistol shooting (preferring the Turnipseed modified Weaver method). He holds a brown belt in Shorenji Jiu Jitsu, and intermediate rankings in Tae Kwon Do and Aikido. He completed the Yoga Works basic Hatha Yoga instructor program; is studying Pentjak Silat (an Indonesian fighting system) with Guru Stevan Plinck, and Ashtanga Yoga, an aerobic form of yoga.




  1. ^ a b Steven Barnes: White & Black. Locus Magazine; vol/issue 50/3[506] 2003. Pages 84-86. (excerpts)
  2. ^ Award nominees Archived November 20, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ interview
  4. ^ a b Interview: Steven Barnes Archived October 8, 2013, at the Wayback Machine, by Greg Beatty. Strange Horizons, July 29, 2002. Retrieved August 31, 2013
  5. ^ 'Bees' big at NAACP Image Awards, by N'neka Hite. Variety, February 12, 2009. Retrieved July 25, 2019
  6. ^ "Tananarive Due and Steven Barnes on Jamming with Stephen King and the Enduring Power of Genre Writing", Consequence of Sound, March 29, 2019
  7. ^ "Steven Barnes" in Cellarius Stories, Volume 1, ch. 10. Cellarius, Ed., New York: 2018, ISBN 978-1-949688-02-3.