Pat Cadigan (born 1953) is an American-born science fiction author, whose work is described as part of the cyberpunk movement. Her novels and stories all share a common theme, exploring the relationship between the human mind and technology.
She was born in Schenectady, New York, and grew up in Fitchburg, Massachusetts. She was educated at the University of Massachusetts and the University of Kansas (where she studied with James Gunn), graduating in 1975. Cadigan then went to work as a writer for Hallmark Cards. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, Cadigan edited the small press magazines Shayol and Chacal. She was first published in 1980; success as an author encouraged her to write full time from 1987. She emigrated to England in 1996.
Her first novel, Mindplayers, introduces what becomes the common theme to all her works. Her stories blur the line between reality and perception by making the human mind a real, explorable place. Her second novel, Synners, expands upon the same theme, and both feature a future where direct access to the mind via technology is possible. While her stories include many of the gritty, unvarnished characteristics of the cyberpunk genre, she further specializes in this exploration of the speculative relationship between technology and the perceptions of the human mind.
She has won a number of awards, including the Arthur C. Clarke Award in 1992 and 1995 for her novels Synners and Fools, and was a guest speaker at Microcon 28 in 2008.
Robert A. Heinlein in part dedicated his 1982 novel Friday to Cadigan.
In the 1960s, Cadigan and a childhood girlfriend “invented a whole secret life in which we were twins from the planet Venus,” she told National Public Radio.  The Beatles “came to us for advice about their songs and how to deal with fame and other important matters,” Cadigan says. “On occasion, they would ask us to use our highly developed shape-shifting ability to become them, and finish recording sessions and concert tours when they were too tired to go on themselves.”
The Venusian twins had other superpowers, that they would sometimes use to help out Superman, Wonder Woman and other heroes, she said.