Tuesday, March 24, 2009


So, last time I established that, for me, authonomy was very much a case of Been There, Seen It, Done That. Did Not Buy The T-shirt. You get what you can out of it, you move on - no need to commemorate it on an article of clothing, eh. ;-)

But as I stated, I'm going to be leaving samples up on the site as a reasonably accessible showcase for my work. At some point I may go to the trouble of converting them to PDFs to post on my own website, but for the time being they may as well stay put. Even though I'm no longer an active member of the site, I may as well put the account/page to some use.

So, if anyone feels like having a read and finding out what goes on in the imagination of Simon Forward - well, some of what goes on! - these are the places to visit:

Evil UnLtd (TM). The Farce Of The Dark Side. Villains are the heroes in this sci-fi comedy. Enough has been said about this one that I don't suppose I need to expand on that. Give it a whirl - if the comments I received were any gauge, it proved popular with SF and mainstream readers alike. I'm aiming to get back on the metaphorical campaign bus, searching for a publisher for this one and in the meantime have begun work on Vol 2 in the series.

Then, of course, there's Kip Doodle And The Armchair Of Lost Dreams. Kip Doodle's been trapped in his latest cliffhanger for too long. Now he's breaking out of his felt-tip world and into Ty Lewis' life. Anyone who's read this blog will know about Kip Doodle (TM), but for those who don't, it's an action adventure fantasy series for kids of 8+ - and a fair number of grown-ups too. Haven't actually started work on any further episodes yet, but I've drafted plots for another two books in the series and ideas for others are popping into my head all the time.

Then we have Tortenschloss. Gormenghast with multi-coloured frosting, a cherry on top and dark sprinkles. A Young Adult fantasy adventure, this is intended as the first book in a trilogy. The two subsequent books have been plotted with broad strokes and as with Kip, it's just a case of my preferred approach to work on some projects: this book evolved fluidly in the writing process and I'm keen to allow that to happen with the others in the series.

HEAVENSEND. The Four Horsemen are coming. Who will be the Four to stand against them? Another trilogy in the making, but this one definitely in the adult sf/fantasy - and even horror - market. I do need to continue with this series, but I also need to wait until the return to the chillier, greyer months as it's that sort of atmosphere I like to tap into for the characters and situations involved. And of course, none of us are in any hurry to get back to winter now that we're enjoying a spot of sunshine. So I and the characters of Heavensend will just have to be patient!

Ice Cold In Alex's. How far must a man go, to what depths must he sink, to protect paradise? A stab at a more literary form of SF, this is just one of those stories I have to write, irrespective of market considerations or whatever. As such, it's one of the first to take a back seat whenever I have paid work on, but I will finish it one day! Its themes of morality, love, hatred and idealism are just some of those things I feel compelled to explore.

WILD.Mama Nature has a bone to pick with Mankind. To save humanity, the world turns to a man called Wild. Coincidence? Maybe not. Adult SF/fantasy/horror, but different again to Heavensend. Although there are some connections, not least in terms of the featured background world/universe. A long time before authonomy was even a twinkle in the eye of Harper Collins, this actually received a decent spot of feedback from HC's Voyager imprint - one of those "You can clearly write, but it's a question of the market" style receptions. Which I took as highly encouraging at the time.

Industrial Waste.A Neuromance. SF/fantasy, again connected with the backdrop featured in Wild and Heavensend, and different again. This was the second novel I ever completed, so it's quite old now, but like Wild, it received a similar sort of praise in its 'rejection' from a top SF agent. Well-written, but a bit too Cyberpunk - at a time when Cyberpunk had had its day, or words to that effect.

Like all the samples on offer, it's not present for any of the old authonomy vote chasing, purely for your reading pleasure. And maybe a measure of frustration inherent in reading a sample and, all being well, getting to the end and wanting more. It's also worth noting that a number of the pitches/blurbs were done in a hurry for the sake of a quick upload, so those are by no means the polished article that you'd expect to see on a book cover, or even in a submission. For that - and any frustration! ;-) - I apologise in advance, but nevertheless if you do try a taster of any of these, I hope you enjoy. Comments are welcome here or on the site and I may upload further samples at some point or, as is more likely, eventually transfer samples to my own website.

Meanwhile, fingers crossed there'll be an announcement before too long about further commissioned work. I'd love to tell you now, but for the time being that's all hush hush, so I'd just have to content myself with placing a finger to my lips and going, "Shhhhh." Which wouldn't make for much of a blog post, I admit.

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