Lester Smith's first publishing credit was a "capsule review" of Wizards' Realm in Steve Jackson Games's Space Gamer magazine. His second was the Mind Duel boardgame, also in Space Gamer, though published by DTI (Diverse Talents, Incorporated)
Those credits led to a part-time proofreading job at GDW, which in turn landed him a full-time position as lead designer and line manager of the 2300 AD role-playing game. Also for GDW, he worked on Twilight: 2000 supplements and Space: 1889 (Original edition) projects, designed and managed the Dark Conspiracy horror RPG, edited the Dangerous Journeys project, and contributed to the Traveller: The New Era RPG, as well as writing regularly for Challenge magazine. During this time, Les also published freelance pieces in Flying Buffalo, Inc. (FBI)'s City Book IV, FASA's Origins-award-winning Harlequin adventure for Shadowrun (1st Edition), and Dragon Magazines (focusing on small-press reviews).
From there, Les moved to TSR, where he wrote the AM3: Bughunters setting, part of the Amazing Engine RPG line, cowrote the Planes of Chaos boxed set for the Planescape setting, and designed the Origin-award-winning Dragon Dice game.
Les left TSR to join Timothy Brown in founding Destination Games and helped Ken Whitman in the relaunch of the Traveller T4: Marc Miller's Traveller RPG line by Imperium Games, Inc. During this time, he also contributed to Grey Ghost Press, Inc.'s Gamemastering Secrets (2nd Edition) and Green Ronin Publishing's Hobby Games: The 100 Best (both Origins award winners) and Family Games: The 100 Best.
Les currently works days for an educational publishing house. Evenings and weekends he manages Popcorn Press, a family-owned publishing house in southern Wisconsin, producers of poetry, fiction, and (of course) games--including the Invasion of the Saucer People card game.