Linwood Vrooman Carter was an American author of science fiction and fantasy, as well as an editor and critic. He usually wrote as Lin Carter; known pseudonyms include H. P. Lowcraft (for an H. P. Lovecraft parody) and Grail Undwin.Carter had a marked tendency toward self-promotion in his work, frequently citing his own writings in his nonfiction to illustrate points and almost always including at least one of his own pieces in the anthologies he edited. The most extreme instance is his novel Lankar of Callisto, which features Carter himself as the protagonist.As an author, he was a member of the all-male literary banqueting club the Trap Door Spiders, which served as the basis of Isaac Asimov's fictional group of mystery solvers the Black Widowers. Carter himself was the model for the Mario Gonzalo character. He was also a member of the Swordsmen and Sorcerers' Guild of America (SAGA), a loose-knit group of Heroic fantasy authors founded in the 1960s, some of whose work he anthologized in the Flashing Swords! series. Carter is most closely associated with fellow author L. Sprague de Camp, who served as a mentor and collaborator and was a fellow member of both the Trap Door Spiders and SAGA.Carter served in Korea, after which he attended Columbia University. He was a copywriter for some years before writing full-time. In later life Carter saw his popularity sag and his standard of life severely lowered: when he developed oral cancer and had to endure extensive surgery to have it removed. Only his status as a Korea veteran enabled him, under the faulty u.s. medical service provisions, to receive the treatment which proved not resolutive and left him disfigured. Carter increased his alcohol intake, becoming a borderline alcoholic and severely weakening his body (already proved by cancer and therapy). The disease subsequently surfaced again spreading to his throat, leading to his death in 1988.