Kate Heartfield

Kate Heartfield is the author of dozens of speculative-fiction stories, including “The Seven O’Clock Man,” which was longlisted for the Sunburst Award. Her interactive novel The Road to Canterbury is coming soon from Choice of Games. Her novella The Course of True Love was published in 2016 as part of the Shakespearean fantasy collection Monstrous Little Voices from Abaddon Books. Kate grew up in Manitoba, lived for a year in Belize and now lives in rural Ottawa with her partner and their son. A former newspaper editor, she now makes her living as a freelance editor, teacher and writer.

Find Kate Heartfield on:
The Official Kate Heartfield Website


  • Sunburst Award, Novel (shortlisted, Armed in Her Fashion, 2019)
  • Locus Award, Novel (shortlisted, Armed in Her Fashion, 2019)
  • Crawford Award, Novel (shortlisted, Armed in Her Fashion, 2019)
  • Aurora Award, Novel (shortlisted, Armed in Her Fashion, 2019)

For Armed in Her Fashion

“In Armed in Her Fashion, Kate Heartfield paints a darkly fantastic, humorously grotesque portrait of the European Middle Ages. Heartfield’s deep knowledge of art and literature from and about the medieval period allows her to approach her setting in a way that is simultaneously affectionate and subversive. Her engaging characters wander through a landscape in which horror and absurdity combine, seemingly rigid truths are deconstructed, and it very much matters who is telling the story.”
—2019 Sunburst Award Jury

“The novel is written with arresting detail and challenges literary tropes about women. Its roster includes half a dozen complex female characters and one trans male character, all of them captivating, sympathetic, repulsive, flawed, dangerous, selfless, determined, and damaged. They and Heartfield’s powerful battle scenes make this well worth the price of admission.”
Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Armed in Her Fashion is Kate Heartfield’s debut novel, and what a strange, compelling, genre-bending debut it is. Part horror, part fantasy, part history, and part epic, it combines all of its elements into a commentary on gender, power, and patriarchy. . . . I really enjoyed Armed in Her Fashion. It’s worth reading. I may, in fact, need to read it again: there are interesting layers in the thematic work that Heartfield’s doing, and I’m not convinced I caught them all in one sitting. In other words, I recommend it.”
—Liz Bourke, Tor.com

For “Bonsaiships of Venus”

“Heartfield captures an aesthetic edge that is sharp as death.”
Speculating Canada

“Searingly beautiful . . . told in awe-inducing language.”

For “The Seven O’Clock Man”

“Blending character and action in a way that makes the reader’s pulse pound is tough in a short story, but Kate absolutely nails it; I was on the edge of my seat throughout the entire thing.”
Black Gate

For “For Sale by Owner”

“The mark of an extraordinary tale is one that makes all of life’s distractions disappear and loses the reader in the telling. This is one such story. This is why we read stories. This is why fiction exists, to enlighten the human condition, and to share it with others.”
Diabolical Plots

For “Traveller, Take Me”

“A poignant tale of loss and self-reflection.”