Neil Shooter


I grew up in Robin Hood Country, spent some time in the sprawling metropolises (?) of London, England, and Toronto, Canada, and now I've found a quiet corner of rural Ontario to put myself out to pasture in.
I'm always in search of my serenity and my muse.
I try to read, and to write, a little bit every day, so that my gears keep turning...

Smashwords Interview

What is your writing process?
I prefer to write out the first draft of anything by hand. The words flow better, and quicker, and the limitations of space and inconvenience stop me from going back and editing. If I write a first draft electronically, it is so easy to glance up the page, and just fix this one error, and oh that would sound better if I did that instead, and before you know it your flow has ebbed.
My second draft is the "typing up" version, with edits and revisions as I go.
I have to give "percolation" time between drafts, so that the words are fresh when I reread them, and so I can notice typos and other small errors.
You can never check too many times!
How do you approach cover design?
My favourite book covers have always been ones with bold colours, or unique artwork. Growing up, I had a set of Foundation novels, and I loved how the alien tree in the foreground grew with the city in the background. So with my own covers, I have tried to make striking or beautiful images, and to have clear links between the covers of connected stories.
The original covers of Causality and Probability were created using Photoshop, and at the time I was extremely pleased with them. Since publishing them, I've painted replacements, with a theme of a sky and a certain constellation.
With Homeless, I wanted something stark and bold.
With The Visitor, I wanted something dark and mysterious. Although I was pleased with the work I did on it, the darkness doesn't work well in the sizes most often viewed.
I used my own photographs for January 2016 Volume 1, and Five Miles Out Of Black Creek, and I'm very happy with how they turned out.
Read more of this interview.

Where to find Neil Shooter online


Annual 2019
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 21,360. Language: English. Published: January 9, 2020 . Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories, Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
A collection of Neil Shooter's published stories from 2019, along with a few little extras. Includes: "New Year" "Anti Hero" ...and more.
Anti Hero
Price: $1.29 USD. Words: 6,450. Language: English. Published: December 31, 2019 . Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories, Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
Danny rushes to a meeting, not realizing how stupid an idea this was until he is already there, and it is already too late.
New Year
Price: $1.29 USD. Words: 4,550. Language: English. Published: November 26, 2019 . Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories, Fiction » Science fiction » General
Life on Mars is a constant struggle, and not at all what Naamah expected. The Mission backers melted away, and the four new Martians are alone. To survive Mars, she must come to terms with her past, her present, and her future.
Annual 2018
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 39,820. Language: English. Published: December 30, 2018 . Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - single author, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
A collection of Neil Shooter's published stories from 2018, along with a few little extras. Includes: The Catch The Long Night The Edge ...and more.
The Edge
Price: $1.29 USD. Words: 22,020. Language: English. Published: December 21, 2018 . Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » General, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
Two scientists on a journey to the edge of the Solar System are determined to push the boundaries of modern astronomy. Professor Alexander King has been working on this project for decades: it is his crowning achievement. His former student, Dr. Reza Shah is as happy to be leaving his old life behind as he is to be heading into the depths of interplanetary space. It's all going to be fine...
The Long Night
Price: $1.29 USD. Words: 5,570. Language: English. Published: December 4, 2018 . Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
The human colony world of Paradise is a frigid mockery of habitable. Commander Carter Jensen's mission to escort a wayward professor back to Eden Base to face justice has taken too long, and night is about to fall. The alien shipwreck is their only chance of escaping the Shearers and surviving the night. But the alien ship haunts Jensen's mind, constantly whispering to him. Are the voices real?
Price: $1.29 USD. Words: 11,360. Language: English. Published: November 7, 2018 . Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Thriller & Suspense, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
Claudia, Melanie, and Daphne. Just three girls walking side by side, intent on each other, and the game they are about to play: Catch. Anyone with an up-to-date phone can play. Not just thirteen-year-old girls. This is the game's strength, and its weakness.
366 Story Seeds
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 10,190. Language: English. Published: October 1, 2018 . Categories: Nonfiction » Inspiration » General self-help, Nonfiction » Reference » Writing skills
An idea is only the first step. Questions build stories. You must interrogate an idea, and learn to see it from different angles. You need to find the story within the setting. The more you do, the better you do. The best way to learn to do something is to do it over and over again. If you write 366 stories, it is surely impossible for them all to be bad?
Annual 2016
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 18,240. Language: English. Published: February 10, 2017 . Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » General
Annual 2016 is a year in the writing life of me! The Annual includes two published short stories, "Five Miles out of Black Creek" and "The Visitor", several more gems from the Vault, a poem, and a few sneak peaks of what might be to come.
Five Miles Out Of Black Creek
Price: $1.29 USD. Words: 5,070. Language: English. Published: December 30, 2016 . Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
(3.50 from 2 reviews)
Dean Rand is in a bit of a slump. Can this next story save his bacon? Dr. Chang's dirty white farmhouse in the middle of nowhere? Well, in the middle of Hamilton County, five miles out of Black Creek. Why would a scientist want to live here? Or work here?
January 2016 - Volume 1 - Eleven Short Stories
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 28,870. Language: English. Published: December 15, 2016 . Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - single author, Fiction » Erotica » General
Terror, humanity, fallibility, love, sex, despair, regret, sacrifice, grief, deceit, and hope. Eleven short stories of distant planets, desperate futures, ancient magic, lost souls, shattered dreams, vain hopes, and bad decisions.
The Visitor
Price: $1.29 USD. Words: 4,630. Language: English. Published: January 6, 2016 . Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
(4.00 from 2 reviews)
On an ordinary blustery British night an extraordinary visitor comes, a time traveller, with a paradox. But time is relative.
Annual 2013
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 40,800. Language: English. Published: January 26, 2014 . Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - single author
This collection is an Annual, a review of my writing life in 2013, including all short stories published in 2013, interviews, blurbs, some gems out of my Vault, and excerpts of some of the things that are coming soon!
Price: $1.29 USD. Words: 6,830. Language: English. Published: November 9, 2013 . Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
(3.00 from 1 review)
Winter didn't end, but his world has. Is he completely alone? In a world gone cold, what can keep the spark of life shining?
The Kinnon Gate (A Short Story)
Price: Free! Words: 7,210. Language: English. Published: May 22, 2013 . Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
From all over the Kinnon, they have been magically Called to a wintry square in a deserted city, but by whom, and why?
Price: $1.29 USD. Words: 3,680. Language: English. Published: February 15, 2013 . Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Apocalyptic
His eyes are filled with recognition even though they have never met. She knows it's not possible, but it's happening anyway. It makes no sense, and yet it is real. They shared a dream, but how much of it will come true?
Price: $1.29 USD. Words: 3,760. Language: English. Published: January 1, 2013 . Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
(4.00 from 1 review)
A dream of desolation and death. A nightmare vision of a looming end, surrounded by hidden enemies and desperate strangers. His love taken. His hope lost. His life forfeit because of his failures, his inadequacies. How can this end be a beginning? And how can a dream seem so real?

Neil Shooter's tag cloud

about    adventure    alien    annual    anthology    apocalypse    army    array    bastion    battle    birds    black creek    blurb    britain    catch    causality    challenge    city    collection    colony    colony world    comet    creative writing    creativity    daily writing prompt    danger    dead    dean rand    discovery    dream    duck    ebulon    edge    epic    epiphany    fantasy    fiction    future    game    gate    girl    grandfather    gravity    hero    holiday    homeless    horror    human    idea    insanity    interplanetary    interview    kinnon    last    love    magic    mars    martian    mergus    mission    monster    myth    neighbour    nightmare    orc    ordinary    pa    paradise    paradox    phone    portal    post apocalyptic    probability    prompt    prophet    rand    scene    science    science fiction    scifi    seed    settler    sf    ship    short fiction    short stories    short story    snow    solar system    space    space ship    story    superhero    survival    suspense    sword    tales    technology    time    time travel    timeline    toronto    vault    visitor    winter    world    wreck    writing    wyrd    zombie   

Smashwords book reviews by Neil Shooter

  • Z on May 22, 2013

    An interesting idea, and an interesting character in Z. This 16 page short story would benefit from a better translation (there were numerous translation errors).
  • Red Desert - Back Home on Oct. 07, 2017

    The four Red Desert stories really need to be read one after the other. I enjoyed this one, book four, so much more simply because I had also just finished reading book three. The story was good, but I remember being so utterly caught up in books one and two. The translation was as good as the first two books also, and much better than the translation of book three. There is a lot of hopping around in time. Well, this kind of thing happens throughout the series, but it is more pronounced here, because some of the scenes are from the very end, and some are from the very beginning of the narrative, from before they even went to Mars, so that the contrast is sometimes jarring. I'd really like to reread the whole series with the scenes rearranged in chronological order (which is also something I had wanted from Lost, the TV show). The ending didn't quite work for me. Perhaps because it wrapped things up slowly, while also setting up a future story. There wasn't the tight or dramatic ending like the other three books had had. But, denouement. I get it. I just remember how much I loved, dreamed, and breathed, the first two books in this series, and I just *didn't* the last two. Still, I did enjoy the story as a whole, and I am interested in seeing what the universe holds in store, with Aurora.
  • Conditional Voluntary on Nov. 27, 2017

    Patrick Coyne wakes up in a strange place, and with a sinking feeling realizes he is in the psych ward. This is a sympathetic and straightforward look at mental illness. I didn't like the shifting point of view. The writing was a bit stilted, but quite detailed. I found that even though the writing style didn't agree with me I felt a connection to Patrick and wanted to know what happened to him in the end. That end turned out to be rather sad, and a little disappointing, but quite fitting. And entirely realistic.