Melissa Scott was born and raised in Little Rock, Arkansas, where she discovered science fiction as the direct result of breaking her arm during junior high gym class. She was banished to the library, and there the assistant librarian suggested she might enjoy "what's his name, Heinlein - or that Andre Norton guy." He was right. She devoured everything available at school, and then discovered the collection created by the Little Rock Public Library's À Son Goût Trust, which had been established to purchase "books people like to read" -- SF, fantasy, and Westerns
Scott studied history at Harvard College, where she was involved with the now-defunct college-sanctioned SF 'zine that spawned the Harvard/Radcliffe Science Fiction Association, and was introduced to a new round of SF, particularly media SF -- like Dr. Who -- that had been unavailable in her home town. After graduation, she was admitted to Brandeis University's comparative history program, and also sold her first novel, The Game Beyond, quickly becaming a part-time graduate student and an -- almost -- full-time writer. She earned her PhD from Brandeis with a dissertation titled "The Victory of the Ancients: Tactics, Technology, and the Use of Classical Precedent."
Over the next twenty years, she published eighteen original novels and a handful of short stories, as well as tie-in novels for both Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (Proud Helios) and Star Trek: Voyager (The Garden). She won the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer in 1986, and won Lambda Literary Awards in 1994 for Trouble And Her Friends, 1995 for Shadow Man, and again in 2001 for Point of Dreams, the last written with long-time partner and collaborator, the late Lisa A. Barnett. Scott has also been short-listed for the Tiptree Award, and won a Spectrum Award for Shadow Man.
During Barnett's struggle with breast cancer, and for several years after her death in 2006, Scott focused on short fiction. She returned to longer work in the summer of 2009, when good friend and fellow writer Jo Graham invited her to participate in a new project: Legacy, a six-book series of tie-in novels for Stargate: Atlantis, to begin where the fifth season had ended. Scott was immediately hooked by the idea, and she, Graham, and Amy Griswold completed the project in 2013 with the release of Stargate Atlantis: The Inheritors. Scott and Graham also began a new series of adventure novels set in the 1930s, featuring aviation, magic, and secrets hidden in plain sight. The first two novels, Lost Things and Steel Blues, are available as of this writing, and the series will continue as The Order of the Air. Scott and Griswold also teamed up for the original novel Death By Silver, a gay Victorian murder mystery with magic (or fantasy with murder), and will continue the series with A Non-Conforming Death. Scott has also returned to the world of Astreiant for two more books in the Points series (Point of Knives and the forthcoming Fairs' Point) and has more original work on the way.
Scott currently lives in North Carolina, where her living room overlooks a pond filled with alarmingly active and carnivorous turtles.
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