Colin Greenland was born in Dover, in the county of Kent, England, on the 17th of May 1954, and was educated at Pembroke College, Oxford. He started writing in his early childhood, and his first published work was the short story Miss Otis Regrets in 1982, soon followed by his first novel, Daybreak on a Different Mountain, in 1984. This was followed in 1987 by The Hour of the Thin Ox, and in 1988 by Other Voices.
However, it was 1990ís Take Back Plenty that really started to make his name, winning all three British SF awards for that year; the Eastercon, the British SF Association, and the Arthur C. Clarke, and remains the only novel to have ever done so. It was also the first novel nominated by the SF Fan Fund to be recorded as a Talking Book for the Blind, with Colin doing the reading. Take Back Plenty was followed by two other novels featuring itís heroine, Tabitha Jute, Seasons of Plenty in 1995, and Mother of Plenty in 1998, as well as a short story collection, The Plenty Principle, in 1997.
Besides all of these, Colin has also contributed reviews and features to the New Statesman, The Face, The Guardian, the Independent, and the Sunday Times, spent two years as the Arts Council Writer in Residence at the Science Fiction Foundation, wrote quite a number of short stories, wrote the text for Magnetic Storm a book of works by the fantasy artist Roger Dean, published a collection of interviews with Michael Moorcock called Death is No Obstacle, as well as another book about Moorcock, The Entropy Exhibition: Michael Moorcock and the British "New Wave" in Science Fiction, based on his PhD thesis, as well as several more works of fiction.
His work has been translated into twelve languages, and has been broadcast on BBC Radio. He is a long-standing member of the British Science Fiction Association, served on the editorial committee of Interzone, taught extramurally at Birkbeck College, London and was for many years closely involved with the Science Fiction Foundation. His most recent work, Finding Helen, has met with considerable critical acclaim.
Or, as he says himself, "You could say his early sf and fantasy, especially Other Voices and Harm's Way, were premature signs of the New Weird and the current British boom, but he reckons heís too old and fat and tired to go through that all again. Instead he's writing strange, evocative slipstream books, like Finding Helen and the glacially accreting Losing David. He lives in Cambridge with his partner Susanna Clarke and wastes time on The Third Alternative message boards."
You can read A Passion for Lord Pierrot, one of the short stories from The Plenty Principle, here.
We are considerably pleased to have Colin as a guest of P-CON.
Photograph of Colin Greenland by and © Duncan Mackay
Profile by Anne M Kletcha