I was born in Canada in 1940 and raised there. From 1956 until 1964 I lived in the USA, taking a BA at NYU in 1962 while living with Pamela Zoline. Judith Clute and I were married in 1964. Since 1968 I have lived in London as does Judith Clute in the same flat (see Polder below), though we both spend much time abroad. I have no biological children, though Callie Hand and Tristan Grant mean to me what biological children mean to biological parents.

My first professional publication was a long poem called "Carcajou Lament" for Triquarterly in 1959, and my first sf story was "A Man Must Die" for New Worlds in 1966; but I've written mostly non-fiction. I began professional reviewing for The Toronto Star in 1966, and have worked as a reviewer, mostly in the literatures of the fantastic, for many journals, ever since. I currently do two columns: Excessive Candour for Science Fiction Weekly; and Scores for Interzone. Much of this material has been assembled in three collections: Strokes: Essays and Reviews 1966-1986 (1988), Look at the Evidence (1996) and Scores: Reviews 1993-2003 (2003).

Other non-fiction books include The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction (1979; second edition 1993) with Peter Nicholls, and The Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997) with John Grant. In both cases Nicholls and Grant and I were listed as editors, though the books were in fact mostly written by the three of us variously. I wrote Science Fiction: the Illustrated Encyclopedia (1995) solo, and The Book of End Times (1999). I've co-edited some anthologies.

I continue to publish fiction infrequently. There are two novels to date: The Disinheriting Party (1977) and Appleseed (2001). The latter is sf. A sequence of definitions of horror motifs, The Darkening Garden, will appear in late 2006; a Third Edition of The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction is being prepared for online release at the end of 2007.

I have been a Trustee of the Telluride Institute, Telluride, Colorado, since its founding in 1985; and a Trustee of The Science Fiction Foundation, England, since 1997, having served earlier on the SFF Committee and as Book Reviews Editor for the SFF journal Foundation 1980-1990.

I am a book collector. There is no twelve-step.

Reviews and criticism have appeared in the following journals:

Varsity 1964-1967; Toronto Star, weekly New Fiction column, 1966-67; Toronto Globe & Mail, 1966-1967, 1998-
and elsewhere

Collage; The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction; The Washington Post; The New York Times; The Los Angeles Times; Omni; The New York Review of Science Fiction; Science Fiction Weekly; Nova Express; Science Fiction Eye; the Boston Herald; Salonmagazine; Strange Horizons
and elsewhere

Interzone; Times Literary Supplement; Observer; The Times; Sunday Times; Guardian; Independent; Correspondent; Mail on Sunday; New Statesman; New Scientist; Listener; Foundation
and elsewhere

1965 The Aspen Poetry Handbill, editor, portfolio
1977 The Disinheriting Party
1979 The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction associate editor
1985 Interzone: the 1st Anthology co-editor
1987 Interzone: the 2nd Anthology co-editor
1988 Strokes: Essays and Reviews 1966-1986
1988 Interzone: the 3rd Anthology co-editor
1989 Interzone: the 4th Anthology co-editor
1991 Interzone: the 5th Anthology co-editor
1993 The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction co-editor
1995 Science Fiction: The Illustrated Encyclopedia
1996 Look at the Evidence: Essays and Reviews
1997 The Encyclopedia of Fantasy co-editor
1999 The Book of End Times
1999 Tesseracts co-editor
2001 Appleseed
2003 Scores: Reviews 1993-2003
2006 The Darkening Garden: A Short Lexicon of Horror

1967 Canada Council Short Term Grant
1968 Canada Council Junior Fellowship
1989 Readercon Small Presses Awards: Best Criticism
1994 BSFA Special Award <with Nicholls>
1994 Eastercon Award <with Nicholls>
1994 Locus Award <with Nicholls>
1994 Roundtable Award <with Nicholls>
1994 Pilgrim Award
1994 Hugo Award <with Nicholls>
1995 Eaton Grand Master Award <with Nicholls>
1996 Locus Award
1996 Science Fiction Weekly Reader Appreciation Award
1996 Hugo Award
1997 Locus Award
1997 Barry R Levin Collectors Award
1998 Locus Award <with Grant>
1998 Mythopoeic Society Award <with Grant>
1998 Hugo Award <with Grant>
1998 World Fantasy Award <with Grant>
1999 Eaton Award <with Grant>
1999 Distinguished Guest Scholar Award (IAFA)
2002 New York Times Notable Book (Appleseed)
2004 Kurd Lasswitz Award for best translation (Appleseed, Hannes Riffel translator)

<The Bibliography on this site includes a list of interviews>

2006 Polder: a Festschrift for John Clute and Judith Clute (Baltimore, Maryland: Old Earth Books, 2006) ed Farah Mendlesohn