Ed Greenwood

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Ed Greenwood : biography

1959 –

Ed Greenwood (born 1959) is a Canadian writer and editor who created the Forgotten Realms. He invented the Forgotten Realms as a child, as a fantasy world in which to set the stories he imagined, and later used this world as a campaign setting for his own personal Dungeons & Dragons playing group. He began writing articles about the Forgotten Realms for Dragon magazine beginning in 1979, and he sold the rights to the setting to TSR in 1986. Greenwood has written many more articles and D&D game supplement books for the setting, and has written Forgotten Realms novels as a freelance author.

Media Mentions

Ed Greenwood has appeared in the following newspaper and magazine articles, websites and podcasts.


  • Open Design:. . Open Design 004: Dwarves of the Ironcrags.. Retrieved 27 August 2009. Ed provides the voice for the introduction to this show.
  • RPG Countdown:. . Ed appeared on these episodes: 29 July 2009. Retrieved 29 July 2009. (Kobold Quarterly 010).
  • DiceCast Episode 10 (by Polymancer Studios)


  • Clarkesworld Magazine, December 2008

Further reading

Personal life and other activities

Greenwood has published over two hundred articles in Dragon Magazine and Polyhedron Newszine, is a lifetime charter member of the Role Playing Game Association (RPGA) network, has written over thirty books and modules for TSR, and been Gen Con Game Fair guest of honor several times.

He has also contributed to most Forgotten Realms gaming accessories, and authored many more—including the detailed Volo’s Guide series—and continues to DM his own campaign. He writes regular Realmslore columns for the Wizards of the Coast website, and frequents the Candlekeep web forums.

In addition to all these activities, Greenwood works as a library clerk (and sometimes as a librarian) and has edited over a dozen small press magazines. When not appearing at conventions, he lives in an old farmhouse in the countryside of Ontario.

As of 1998, Greenwood lived in applegrowing country on Lake Ontario, still working full-time at the North York Community Library, as he had since 1974, and continued to run his original Waterdeep campaign with the same core group he started with, albeit meeting only sporadically. He has stated that it is important for people who do freelance writing for roleplaying games to be active as both players and as dungeon masters.

Publishing the Realms

In 1987, Ed Greenwood and Jeff Grubb wrote the Forgotten Realms Campaign Set for TSR—though Greenwood had used the Forgotten Realms for his home Dungeons & Dragons campaign since 1975. The spawned campaign world was a success, and he has been involved with all subsequent incarnations of the Forgotten Realms in D&D. Greenwood’s most lasting character from the setting is the wizard Elminster, whom he portrayed (at TSR’s request) for a number of years at conventions and as a participant in the RPGA’s Living City campaign.

Since the release of the Forgotten Realms, Greenwood has published many Forgotten Realms novels, as listed below. He retains certain rights of his setting, but is essentially a freelance author.

Greenwood feels his work on the Realms that he likes best are "those products that impart some of the richness and color of the Realms, such as the novel I wrote with Jeff Grubb, Cormyr; the Volo’s Guides; Seven Sisters; The Code of the Harpers; City of Splendors; and stuff that lots of gamers have found useful, such as Drow of the Underdark and Ruins of Undermountain." He found that it has been easy to keep his enthusiasm for the Realms over the years, as so many people care about it, ask him questions about the world’s lore ("Realmslore"), and share with him what they have done.