Russell Blackford was born in Sydney in 1954 and grew up in Newcastle. In 1979, he moved to Melbourne, where he has been based ever since. During that time he has worked as an academic (teaching English literature at Monash University), in labour relations, in professional legal practice, and as a full-time writer since 2001.
His qualifications include first class honours degrees in both Arts (University of Newcastle) and Law (University of Melbourne), and a Ph.D on the supposed return to myth in modern fiction (University of Newcastle). He is currently completing a Master of Bioethics degree at Monash.
He has traveled widely in Europe, Asia, and North America, as well as throughout Australia. He is a frequent contributor of articles and reviews to Quadrant Magazine and many other publications, often writing about cyberculture, bioethics, philosophical issues relating to science, and the history and current state of the science fiction genre (novel and film). With Van Ikin and Sean McMullen, he wrote Strange Constellations: A History of Australian Science Fiction.
Between 1985 and 1996, Blackford wrote little fiction, while working full time and studying law part time, but he returned with "The Sword of God" in Paul Collins' fantasy anthology "Dream Weavers" (1996). This won both the Ditmar Award for short fiction and the Aurealis Award for Best Fantasy Story. Though still not prolific as a fiction writer, he has since maintained a prominent position in Australian sf, with several award nominations and other honours for his short fiction and literary criticism. He has won the William Atheling, Jr. Award for Criticism or Review on three occasions (1987, 1989 and 2000).
Biography provided by the author, September 2002