Gertrude Barrows Bennett (1883–1948) was the first major female writer of fantasy and science fiction in the United States, publishing her stories under the pseudonym Francis Stevens.
She completed school through the eighth grade then attended night school in hopes of becoming an illustrator, a goal she never achieved. She began working as a stenographer, a job she held on and off for the rest of her life. She began to write a number of short stories and novels, only stopping when her mother died in 1920.
Bennett wrote a number of highly acclaimed fantasies between 1917 and 1923. She has been called "the woman who invented dark fantasy." She has been recognized in recent years as a pioneering female fantasy ... (more)