Day One in the Big Darwin Shed

Thursday, 2 March 2017

Thank you for pledging your support and for your help in bringing Darwin’s Soldiers to publication!

My shed at home has a brass ‘Captain’ plaque on the door and is full of rusty implements, but this shed is a more relaxed affair. Here we have a thick carpet on the floor and well-worn leather chairs to sink into while we chat and I answer your questions. Take your shoes off and relax.

So, introductions. I’m Ste, I’m not a Captain but I do like to tell a story, so here we go…


At 12 noon, February 3rd 2014 I sat at my work desk with a box of ham sarnies and a folder bursting with pictures of ancient warriors and hand-drawn maps. Every page was covered with hastily-written post-it notes which glowed in the light of my screen from where hundreds of words of a half-started novel stared down at me.

The folder hadn’t been opened since 2005.

For a decade, John Greene, his friends and their enemies had been whispering their story to me, desperately trying to infiltrate my other novels, and I had resisted. But finally it was time to open the folder and listen.

Their story wouldn’t go away. It needed to be told.

Despite having one son toddling away at home and a second on the way (generously carried by my wife), I thought I had plenty of spare time to write a novel, so with a click of the mouse and a tap of the key, I was off.

700 lunchbreaks later… Darwin’s Soldiers was finished.

After three full years of writing, deleting, editing and wittering (thank you patient listeners!) and thanks to your generous pledges and the awesome people at Unbound, Darwin’s Soldiers will be shared with the world.


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Publication date: September 2018
101% funded
120 backers