Total Nerd The Best Science-Fiction Authors  

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List Rules Author of science fiction or any sub-genre

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The best science-fiction writers are among some of the most creative writers ever. Instead of only making up a story, they make up entire universes, time dimensions, alien technologies - it's really incredible. Truth be told, some are more successful than others - it is really easy to write bad scifi. But those who can actually pull the genre off are right here on this list of the top science-fiction authors. These are the best science-fiction authors of all time, ranked by readers and fans.

This list include some highly recognizable and classic names, like Isaac Asimov and George Orwell, along with some contemporary science-fiction writers who are just beginning to make their mark on the genre. This list of the best sci-fi authors includes some of the best horror writers and the best fantasy authors, but since the genres elements all go together nicely, it's to be expected. Fans of science-fiction know that there is always some overlap. All of the famous sci fi authors on this list have one thing in common: they've written fantastic, horrifying, mystical works of science-fiction for fans to enjoy for years to come. Vote for your favorite sci-fi authors here and add your own personal faves if you don't see them listed!

Listed among the best science-fiction authors are some of the most well-known, popular sci-di authors ever, including a few that may not always show up on a 'best of' list. Disagree with a choice? Vote it down. The aforementioned (brilliant) writers are responsible for some of the best science-fiction novels and series of all time - but other sci-fi writers like Ray Bradbury (Fahrenheit 451), Mary Shelley (Frankenstein), Robert Louis Stevenson (The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde), and Aldous Huxley (Brave New World) are excellent sci-fi writers as well. All of these authors, in my opinion, deserve a place of honor on this list.

Hopefully, this list will grow and become totally comprehensive. Readers who are new to sci-fi can use it as a great guide to find new science fiction authors and books.
list ordered by

2,952 759
Isaac Asimov is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
I, Robot, Foundation Isaac Asimov was an American author and professor of biochemistry at Boston University, best known for his works of science fiction and for his popular science books. Asimov was prolific and ...more

2,060 756
Philip K. Dick is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, The Man in the High Castle, Ubik Philip Kindred Dick was an American novelist, short story writer, essayist and philosopher whose published works mainly belong to the genre of science fiction. Dick explored philosophical, ...more

2,103 512
Arthur C. Clarke is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
2001: A Space Odyssey, 2010, 2001: A Space Odyssey Sir Arthur Charles Clarke, CBE, FRAS was a British science fiction writer, science writer and futurist, inventor, undersea explorer, and television series host. He is perhaps most famous for ...more

1,764 517
H. G. Wells is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
The Time Machine, Abbott and Costello Meet the Invisible Man, Things to Come Herbert George Wells — known as H. G. Wells — was a prolific English writer in many genres, including the novel, history, politics, and social commentary, and textbooks and rules for games. He ...more

1,910 503
Ray Bradbury is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Something Wicked This Way Comes, Fahrenheit 451, King of Kings Ray Douglas Bradbury was an American fantasy, science fiction, horror and mystery fiction author. Best known for his dystopian novel Fahrenheit 451 and for the science fiction and horror stories ...more

1,618 648
Frank Herbert is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Dune, Dune Messiah, The Lazarus Effect Franklin Patrick Herbert, Jr. was an American science fiction writer best known for the novel Dune and its five sequels. Though he became famous for science fiction, he was also a newspaper ...more

2,075 478
Robert A. Heinlein is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Stranger in a Strange Land, Starship Troopers, The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress Robert Anson Heinlein was an American science fiction writer. Often called the "dean of science fiction writers", he was an influential and controversial author of the genre in his ...more

1,548 512
George Orwell is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Nineteen Eighty-Four, Animal Farm, Down and Out in Paris and London Eric Arthur Blair (25 June 1903 21 January 1950), better known by his psuedonymGeorge Orwell, was an English author. His work is marked by a profound conscientiousness of social injustice, an ...more

1,660 393
Jules Verne is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Around the World in Eighty Days, Journey to the Center of the Earth, The Mysterious Island Jules Gabriel Verne was a French novelist, poet, and playwright best known for his adventure novels and his profound influence on the literary genre of science fiction. Verne was born to ...more

1,294 485
Ursula K. Le Guin is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
The Left Hand of Darkness, The Dispossessed, A Wizard of Earthsea Ursula Kroeber Le Guin is an American author of novels, children's books, and short stories, mainly in the genres of fantasy and science fiction. She has also written poetry and essays. First ...more

1,102 560
Kurt Vonnegut is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Slaughterhouse-Five, Cat's Cradle, Breakfast of Champions Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. was an American writer. His works, such as Cat's Cradle, Slaughterhouse-Five, and Breakfast of Champions, blend satire, gallows humor, and science fiction. As a citizen, he ...more

867 436
Aldous Huxley is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Alice in Wonderland, Brave New World, Pride and Prejudice Aldous Leonard Huxley was an English writer, philosopher and a prominent member of the Huxley family. He was best known for his novels including Brave New World, set in a dystopian London, and ...more

992 377
Larry Niven is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Ringworld, Lucifer's Hammer, The Mote in God's Eye Laurence van Cott Niven is an American science fiction writer. His best-known work is Ringworld, which received Hugo, Locus, Ditmar, and Nebula awards. His work is primarily hard science ...more

1,033 568
H. P. Lovecraft is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories, At the Mountains of Madness, The Dunwich Horror and Others Howard Phillips Lovecraft —known as H. P. Lovecraft—was an American author who achieved posthumous fame through his influential works of horror fiction. He is now regarded as one of the most ...more

1,117 278
Douglas Adams is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Roger Glover added The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, So Long Hitchhikers "trilogy", Dirk Gently Douglas Noel Adams was an English writer, humorist, and dramatist. Adams is best known as the author of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, which originated in 1978 as a BBC radio comedy ...more

832 353
Roger Zelazny is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
The Chronicles of Amber, Lord of Light, Isle of the Dead Roger Joseph Zelazny was an American writer of fantasy and science fiction short stories and novels, best known for his The Chronicles of Amber series. He won the Nebula award three times and ...more

942 378
Terry Pratchett is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
beernbugs added Good Omens, Small Gods, The Colour of Magic Sir Terence David John "Terry" Pratchett, Kt, OBE was an English author of fantasy novels, especially comical works. He is best known for his Discworld series of about 40 volumes. ...more

650 340
Harlan Ellison is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Dreams with Sharp Teeth, The Beast that Shouted Love at the Heart of the World, The Glass Teat Harlan Jay Ellison is an American writer. His principal genre is speculative fiction. His published works include over 1,700 short stories, novellas, screenplays, comic book scripts, teleplays, ...more

783 351
William Gibson is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Neuromancer, Johnny Mnemonic, Mona Lisa Overdrive William Ford Gibson is an American-Canadian speculative fiction novelist and essayist who has been called the "noir prophet" of the cyberpunk subgenre. Gibson coined the term ...more

596 253
Frederik Pohl is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
MatthewDuncan added The Space Merchants, Man Plus, Gateway Frederik George Pohl, Jr. was an American science fiction writer, editor and fan, with a career spanning more than seventy-five years—from his first published work, the 1937 poem "Elegy to ...more

589 260
Poul Anderson is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Countermoon added The Broken Sword, Conflict, Conan the Rebel Poul William Anderson was an American science fiction author who began his career during the Golden Age of the genre and continued to write and remain popular into the 21st century. Anderson ...more

819 390
Neil Gaiman is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
PauldeBakker added Beowulf, Marvel 1602, American Gods Neil Richard MacKinnon Gaiman is an English author of short fiction, novels, comic books, graphic novels, audio theatre and films. His notable works include the comic book series The Sandman and ...more

1,082 574
Orson Scott Card is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Ender's Game, Speaker for the Dead, Ender's Shadow Orson Scott Card is an American novelist, critic, public speaker, essayist and columnist. He writes in several genres but is known best for science fiction. His novel Ender's Game and its sequel ...more

565 317
David Brin is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
randomjane added Startide Rising, The Transparent Society, The Uplift War Glen David Brin is an American scientist and award-winning author of science fiction. He has received the Hugo, Locus, Campbell and Nebula Awards. His Campbell Award winning novel The Postman ...more

759 322
Mary Shelley is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Science-Fiction Authors
Frankenstein, Son of Frankenstein, Political Justice Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley was an English novelist, short story writer, dramatist, essayist, biographer, and travel writer, best known for her Gothic novel Frankenstein: or, The Modern ...more