Dan Simmons Biography & Facts
Dan Simmons (born April 4, 1948) is an American science fiction and horror writer. He is the author of the Hyperion Cantos and the Ilium/Olympos cycles, among other works which span the science fiction, horror, and fantasy genres, sometimes within a single novel. Simmons's genre-intermingling Song of Kali (1985) won the World Fantasy Award. He also writes mysteries and thrillers, some of which feature the continuing character Joe Kurtz.
Born in Peoria, Illinois, Simmons received a B.A. in English from Wabash College in 1970 and, in 1971, a Masters in Education from Washington University in St. Louis.He soon started writing short stories, although his career did not take off until 1982, when, through Harlan Ellison's help, his short story "The River Styx Runs Upstream" was published and awarded first prize in a Twilight Zone Magazine story competition, and he was taken on as a client by Ellison's agent, Richard Curtis. Simmons's first novel, Song of Kali, was released in 1985.He worked in elementary education until 1989.
Summer of Night (1991) recounts the childhood of a group of pre-teens who band together in the 1960s, to defeat a centuries-old evil that terrorizes their hometown of Elm Haven, Illinois. The novel, which was praised by Stephen King in a cover blurb, is similar to King's It (1986) in its focus on small-town life, the corruption of innocence, the return of an ancient evil, and the responsibility for others that emerges with the transition from youth to adulthood.
In the sequel to Summer of Night, A Winter Haunting (2002), Dale Stewart (one of the first book's protagonists and now an adult), revisits his boyhood home to come to grips with mysteries that have disrupted his adult life.
Between the publication of Summer of Night (1991) and A Winter Haunting (2002), several additional characters from Summer of Night appeared in: Children of the Night (1992), a loose sequel to Summer of Night, which features Mike O'Rourke, now much older and a Roman Catholic priest, who is sent on a mission to investigate bizarre events in a European city; Fires of Eden (1994), in which the adult Cordie Cooke appears; and Darwin's Blade (2000), a thriller in which Dale's younger brother, Lawrence Stewart, appears as a minor character.After Summer of Night, Simmons focused on writing science fiction until the 2007 work of historical fiction and horror, The Terror. His 2009 book Drood is based on the last years of Charles Dickens' life leading up to the writing of The Mystery of Edwin Drood, which Dickens had partially completed at the time of his death.
The Terror (2007) crosses the bridge between horror and historical fiction. It is a fictionalized account of Sir John Franklin and his expedition to find the Northwest Passage. The two ships, HMS Erebus and HMS Terror, become icebound the first winter, and the captains and crew struggle to survive while being stalked across an Arctic landscape by a monster.
The Abominable (2013) recounts a mid-1920s attempt on Mount Everest by five climbers—two British, one French, one Sherpa, and one American (the narrator)—to recover the body of a cousin of one the British characters.
Many of Simmons's works have strong ties with classic literature. For example:
His 1989 novel Hyperion, winner of Hugo and Locus Awards for the best science fiction novel, deals with a space war and is inspired in its structure by Boccaccio's Decameron and Chaucer's Canterbury Tales.
The Hyperion Cantos take their titles from poems by the British Romantic John Keats.
The title of Carrion Comfort, as well as many of its themes, derives from the poem "Carrion Comfort" by Gerard Manley Hopkins.
The Hollow Man (1992) is a novel influenced by Dante's Inferno and T. S. Eliot
"The Great Lover" (1993) is a short story inspired by the World War I War Poets
Simmons's collection of short stories, Worlds Enough & Time, takes its name from the first line of the poem "To His Coy Mistress" by English poet Andrew Marvell: "Had we but world enough, and time"
The detective in Flashback is named Nick Bottom after a character in Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's DreamBibliography
Hyperion Cantos series
Hyperion (1989) – ISBN 978-0553283686
The Fall of Hyperion (1990) – ISBN 978-0553288209
Endymion (1996) – ISBN 978-3453315174
The Rise of Endymion (1997) – ISBN 978-0747258933Short stories:
"Remembering Siri" (1983), novelette, prequel to Hyperion
"The Death of the Centaur" (1990), novelette
"Orphans of the Helix" (1999), novelette, sequel of The Rise of EndymionSeasons of Horror seriesSummer of Night (1991) – ISBN 978-0312550677
Children of the Night (1992) – ISBN 978-1250009852
A Winter Haunting (2002) – ISBN 978-0380817160
Fires of Eden (1994) – ISBN 978-0061056147Short stories:
Banished Dreams (1990), collects three prophetic dream sequences that were expurgated from the published edition of Summer of Night
"Dale's Dream", "Kevin's Dream", "Mike's Dream"Joe Kurtz series
Hardcase (2001) – ISBN 978-0312980160
Hard Freeze (2002) – ISBN 978-0316213509
Hard as Nails (2003) – ISBN 978-0312994686Ilium/Olympos series
Ilium (2003) – ISBN 978-0380817924
Olympos (2005) – ISBN 978-0380817931Stand-alones
Song of Kali (1985) – ISBN 978-0312944087
Carrion Comfort (1989), expansion of the novelette published in Prayers to Broken Stones – ISBN 978-0913165386
Phases of Gravity (1989) – ISBN 978-0553277647
The Hollow Man (1992) – ISBN 978-0935716641
The Crook Factory (1999) – ISBN 978-0380973682
Darwin's Blade (2000) – ISBN 978-0380973699
The Terror (2007) – ISBN 978-0316017442
Drood (2009) – ISBN 978-0316007023
Black Hills (2010) –
Flashback (2011) – ISBN 978-0316006965
The Abominable (2013) – ISBN 978-0751550283
The Fifth Heart (2015) – ISBN 978-0316198820
Omega Canyon (2023) – ISBN 978-1847445582Short stories
Prayers to Broken Stones (1990), collection of 6 short stories and 7 novellas/novelettes:
"The River Styx Runs Upstream", "Eyes I Dare Not Meet in Dreams" (novelette), "Vanni Fucci Is Alive and Well and Living in Hell", "Vexed to Nightmare by a Rocking Cradle", "Remembering Siri" (novelette of Hyperion Cantos series), "Metastasis", "The Offering" (novelette), "E-Ticket to 'Namland" AKA "E-Ticket to Namland" (novelette), "Iverson's Pits" (novella), "Shave and a Haircut, Two Bites", "The Death of the Centaur" (novelette of Hyperion Cantos series), "Two Minutes Forty-Five Seconds", "Carrion Comfort" (novelette)
Lovedeath (1993), collection of 5 novellas/novelettes:
"Entropy's Bed at Midnight" (novelette), "Dying in Bangkok" AKA "Death in Bangkok" (novelette), "Sleeping with Teeth Women" (novella), "Flashback" (novelette), "The Great Lover" (novella)
Worlds Enough & Time (2002), collection of 5 novellas/novelettes:
"Looking for Kelly Dahl" (novella), "Orphans of the Helix" (novelette from Hyperion Cantos series), .... Discover the Dan Simmons popular books. Find the top 100 most popular Dan Simmons books.