William Gibson is an American and Canadian speculative fiction writer and essayist widely credited with pioneering the science fiction subgenre known as cyberpunk. Beginning his writing career in the late 1970s, his early works were bleak, noir, near-future stories that explored the effects of technology, cybernetics, and computer networks on humans—a "combination of lowlife and high tech"—and helped to create an iconography for the information age before the ubiquity of the Internet in the 1990s. Gibson notably coined the term "cyberspace" in his short story "Burning Chrome" (1982) and later popularized the concept in his acclaimed debut novel Neuromancer (1984). These early works have been credited with "renovating" science fiction literature after it had fallen largely into insignificance in the 1970s.
Hailed by Steven Poole of The Guardian in 1999 as "probably the most important novelist of the past two decades" in terms of influence, Gibson first achieved critical recognition with his debut novel, Neuromancer. The novel won three major science fiction awards
Gibson's work is praised by critics for its depictions of late capitalism and its "rewriting of subjectivity, human consciousness and behaviour made newly problematic by technology." The Literary Encyclopedia identifies Gibson as "one of North America's most highly acclaimed science fiction writers."