Meet Susan Forest

Susan Forest

Three-time Prix Aurora Award finalist, Susan Forest is a writer of science fiction, fantasy and horror, and is an Aurora-winning fiction editor for Laksa Media Groups. Several of her past short stories are available to read on Curious Fictions, where you can subscribe to her updates. Her novel, Bursts of Fire, the first in a seven-volume YA epic fantasy series, the Addicted to Heaven Saga, will be out Spring 2019 from Laksa Media, followed by Flights of Marigolds (2019). Her young adult fantasy, The Dragon Prince, won the Children’s Book Choice Award. She has published over twenty-five short stories in Canada and the United States. Her works have appeared in Asimov’s Science FictionAnalog Science Fiction and Fact, OnSPEC Magazine, three of the Tesseracts anthologies, AE Science Fiction Review, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, and the Aurora-winning Blood and Water, among others. Her collection of short fiction, Immunity to Strange Tales, was published by Five Rivers Press, and her nonfiction has appeared in Legacy Magazine, Alberta Views Magazine, and the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America Blog. Her short stories, “Back,” “Turning It Off,” and “The Gift” were nominees for the Prix Aurora Award, and her novella, Lucy, won the Galaxy Project, jurried by Robert Silverberg, David Drake and Barry Malzburg.

Susan has also had the good fortune to study writing with a wide range of luminaries, including Robert J Sawyer, Mike Resnick, Joe and Gaye Haldeman, Nancy Kress, James Alan Gardner, R. Scott Bakker, Dave Wolverton, David B. Coe, Walter Jon Williams, Paoli Baccigalupi, Daniel Abraham, Diana Rowlands, Adam-Troy Castro and Michael Cassutt.

In writing-related activities, Susan is a member of CAFE (Calgary Association of Freelance Editors). Technicolor Ultramall, a book she edited for Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing, was a finalist for the Prix Aurora Award in 2013, and Strangers Among Us for Laksa Media Groups won the Aurora for 2017. The second in Laksa Media’s social issues anthology series, The Sum of Us, was released in 2017 and Shades Within Us is forthcoming in 2018. She has appeared as a panelist at a number of science fiction and fantasy Conventions: World Science Fiction conventions in Denver, Montreal, Reno, Chicago, Spokane, and Kansas City, World Fantasy Conventions in Calgary, Columbus, San Diego, Toronto, Washington, DC,  and Saratoga, and several smaller conventions (Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa, Vancouver). In 2013, Susan judged the Endeavour Award for books published in the Pacific Northwest, and twice judged the Robin Herrington Memorial Short Story Contest in Calgary. She contributes to Calgary’s annual literary festival, When Words Collide, as their Grants Liaison, and is past Secretary for the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA). Susan teaches for the Alexandra Writers’ Centre (multi-week novel and speculative fiction courses, and weekend-intensive courses) and presents annually at the Calgary Young Writers’ Festival.

Outside the world of writing, Susan is a visual artist and the mother of four. Her husband writes a regular column for Alberta’s Rocky Mountain Rail Society News and his non-fiction has appeared in McLean’s Magazine. Her eldest daughter, Heather, is currently pursuing her Doctorate in Creative Writing at the University of Calgary, having completed her Masters Degree in Science Fiction Studies at the University of Liverpool; Heather has a number of publications to her credit and is the mother of one. Susan’s son, Alec, has presented her with three wonderful grandsons, and daughter Holly works as an artist at the Banff Center for Creative Arts, while Amy is studying at the University of Calgary.

Young Adult Fiction:

The Dragon Prince, Gage Educational Publishing, 1990.


Children’s Choice Book Award, 1990, Winner, The Dragon Prince, Gage, 1990

Robin Herrington Short Story Contest, 2005, second place, “Immunity.” In Places Between, Summer, 2005

Prix Aurora Award, 2009, Finalist, “Back,” Analog, June, 2008

StorySouth Million Writers Award, 2010, Notable Online Story Finalist, “Orange,” AE SF Review, December, 2010

The Galaxy Project, 2011, Winner, “Lucy,” Rosetta Books, November, 2011, Juried by Robert Silverberg, David Drake and Barry Malzberg

Prix Aurora Award, 2012, Finalist, “Turning It Off,” Analog, December, 2011

Prix Aurora Award, 2014, Finalist, “The Gift,” Urban Green Man, Summer, 2013

Prix Aurora Award, 2017, Winner, “Strangers Among Us: Tales of the Underdogs and Outcasts,” Laksa Media, August, 2016

Book Publishers of Alberta Award, 2017, Winner, “Strangers Among Us: Tales of the Underdogs and Outcasts,” Laksa Media, August, 2016

Prix Aurora Award, 2018, Winner, “The Sum of Us: Tales of the Bonded and Bound,” Laksa Media, August, 2017


9 thoughts on “Meet Susan Forest

  1. Lauren

    I am looking for a editor to speak with about their career, since I am considering that area. Would you be willing to talk with me for 30 minutes?

  2. Hi Susan,
    My name is Emily Aalbers and I am the Alumni Relations Specialist for the Faculty of Arts. I am hoping to invite you to an upcoming reception for the Calgary Distinguished Writers Program, but I don’t seem to have your email on file. If this is something you would potentially be interested in attending please pass along your contact information.
    I would also love to feature you in our alumni profiles project created in partnership with the Faculty of Arts Students’ Union representatives. Examples of this project can be found on our website.
    I hope you have a great day and I look forward to hearing from you!
    Emily Aalbers
    Alumni Relations Specialist, Faculty of Arts

  3. Bonjour Susan! I am looking forward to connecting with you at WWC in August. I am so impressed by your writing biography. Bravo! You have done so much! I was principal of King George when you were principal of Highwood. I am guessing you are also retired now. I have been retired for two years and am now pursuing writing full-time, as well as travelling and enjoying life in general. I have also taken up painting, with watercolour. It’s great to finally have time to live the dream. In 2013 I self-published my tome, which I worked on for thirty years throughout my whole career as an educator. It was a labour of love entitled Becoming Sand. I am now working on my second novel. I write historical fiction and especially love the research aspect of the work and how much I learn. I guess I never got over my passion for Social Studies. I remember you telling me about your husband’s passion for trains. Mine has the same illness. We have visited nearly every train museum in the world, I think. But there’s always more, I’m sure!

    I’m sure we’ll see each other at the conference. I went to Words in 3D in Edmonton in May and really enjoyed it and benefitted from the experience.

    Hope to see you in August!


  4. Alice Zhang

    Hi Susan,

    We met last Saturday at the Alexandra Writers’ Centre Society query letter review. I just wanted to thank you again for all the insight and advice you provided, I truly appreciate your time! I hope everything is going well for you, and look forward to perhaps seeing you at an upcoming IFWA meeting or Alexandra Writers’ class.


  5. Shelly

    I am looking for a writer to write an article to be forwarded to the media and posted on social media sites. The story is about Children and Family Services, the perjury they commit to obtain custody of children, the neglect, abuse, alienation and purposeful destruction of children and their lives. Even though children are threatening suicide and are at risk in the care of Cfs, parents cannot get evidence into court for almost a year while the destruction to the child is known, ongoing and ignored. Cfs refuses to allow parents to seek necessary treatment for diagnosed conditions or counselling when the child is suicidal and in a crisis state. As a family mediator and paralegal, every lawyer without exception comments on never having seen a file when Cfs hasn’t lied, the neglect and abuse of children and purposeful destruction it is time for people internationally become aware of the criminal actions of Cfs and how the government in this so called civilize country is torturing children

    • hkosborn

      Dear Shelly, thanks so much for your thoughts. However, Susan Forest is a fiction writer, and she doesn’t solicit or use ideas other people have sent her. Unfortunately she would not be a good fit for your project. You might want to contact a journalist or other non-fiction writer. Good luck.

  6. Michael Bernays, Phoenix, Arizona, USA

    Susan (and her husband, Don) are also excellent ski guides and wonderful volunteer hosts to wandering foreigners at Lake Louise Ski area. They found and adopted us (five Americans skiing across western Canada towards Revelstoke) and took us under their wings at the top of the poma lift. It was delightful to meet them and ski and enjoy a drink afterwards. I look forward to tracking down her work.

    • Susan Forest

      Hey, cool! We had an awesome time as well–so glad we met up with you! Enjoy the rest of your ski holiday!

  7. Andy Doughty

    Thanks for the early half hour. I was coming despite my fears, but your kindness and preparedness washed my aprehensions away. I had fun. You set my focus on the next stage of doables. The road ahead is clear. We might cross paths at the August writers festival—haven’t gone to that page yet. Thanks to you and AWCS(?)

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