Terry Ballantine Bisson (born February 12, 1942) is an American science fiction and fantasy author best known for his short stories including "Bears Discover Fire", which won the Hugo award and the Nebula award and "They're Made Out of Meat".
He was born in Madisonville, Kentucky, and raised in Owensboro, Kentucky.
While a student at Grinnell College (Iowa) in 1961, Bisson was one of a group of twelve students who traveled to Washington, D.C. during the Cuban Missile Crisis supporting U.S. President John F. Kennedy's "peace race". Kennedy invited the group into the White House (the first time protesters had ever been so recognized) and they met for several hours with McGeorge Bundy. The group received wide press coverage, and this event is regarded as the start of the student peace movement.
After leaving Grinnell College, Bisson graduated from the University of Louisville in 1964. He lived "on and off" in New York City for most of the next four decades, moving to Oakland, California in 2002. He became a "working" writer in 1981. A self-identified member of the New Left, he operated Jacobin Books, a "revolutionary" mail-order book service, from 1985 to 1990, in partnership with Judy Jensen.
Bisson's political views are evident in his 1988 alternative history novel Fire on the Mountain, with its outspoken praise of revolutionary socialism.
Bisson has been married three times. He and his first wife, Deirdre Holst, have three children. His second marriage was to Mary Corey. Bisson married his "longtime companion" Judy Jensen on December 24, 2004; the couple has one daughter, and Bisson acts as stepfather to Jensen's two children.
In the 1960s, early in his career, Bisson collaborated on several comic book stories with Clark Dimond, and he edited Major Publications' black-and-white horror-comics magazine Web of Horror, leaving before the fourth issue.
In 1996, he wrote two three-part comic book adaptations of Nine Princes in Amber and The Guns of Avalon, the first two books in Roger Zelazny's "Amber" series.
In 1997, Bisson used Walter M. Miller, Jr.'s outline to complete the writing of Saint Leibowitz and the Wild Horse Woman, an unfinished sequel to Miller's classic 1960 novel A Canticle for Leibowitz, after Miller's death in 1996.