Daughter of a cellist and a travel agent, Fiona Lehn was destined to live a life of drama and passion in other worlds, or at least to write about them. In a creative career that spans most of her lifetime, Lehn has enjoyed some limelight and spent some time in the dark—the one constant, her writing.
As a child, Lehn idolized Karen Carpenter and boasted to anyone who’d listen that she had read “every single Nancy Drew” novel. She sang in school choirs, composed songs, wrote her first novel (unpublished) at age seventeen, and studied performance art and music at a U.K. college before earning a B.A. in creative writing at the University of California, Santa Cruz.
In the early 1990s, Lehn discovered feminist science fiction through the works of Zoë Fairbairns and Doris Lessing and realized that most of her own stories belonged in that subgenre, that there was a world of literature out there (many worlds, actually) that she’d never heard of. She set about reading as much feminist science fiction as she could. She kept writing. She traveled. She became a teacher of at-risk high school students and co-founded a feminist street theatre group called Hermits and Guerrillas (HAG) in her hometown of Stockton, California.
From 1993 to 2006, she co-produced several CDs of her original songs and performed across the U.S., garnering radio airplay, hundreds of fans, and a rave review from Billboard magazine. Described as “half-folkie, half-alt-rock goddess” by one critic, and a “rebel in her own realm” by another, Lehn quickly became known for candid performances, clever wordplay, and passionate ideals.
In 1998, Lehn moved to Vancouver, BC. She became a Canadian citizen soon after and, over the next decade, shifted her focus back from music to fiction. She made her first professional sale of fiction in 2008 when her novella, “The Assignment of Runner ETI,” won third place in the international science fiction writing contest, Writers of the Future. Her second novella, “The Last Letter,” was also her second pro sale—to Aqueduct Press in 2011.
From 2007 to 2011, Lehn served on the editorial collective of Room, Canada's oldest feminist literary magazine. She edited three issues of Room during her time there, one of which celebrated feminist science fiction and fantasy, featuring fiction by Élisabeth Vonneburg, Michaela Roessner, and Candas Jane Dorsey, and an interview with Ursula K. Le Guin.
For more information on Lehn's artistic career and her current projects, visit www.droidfingers.com.