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Unpublished Books

Many authors don't get to see their first novels in print and Guy is no exception, as at least his first two have yet to see print.

I'm also aware of a number of other books which he wrote or compiled but which have not yet seen print because I own them in manuscript or typescript form.

  1. Untitled Children's Adventure
  2. Starlite
  3. Rebel Star
  4. Dreamtime
  5. The Adventures of Guy of Warwick
  6. Fireside Tales and Anecdotes
  7. The Crabs and Other Stories

I originally included Confessions of a Sex-Writer too, which I don't own, but I've since removed it as I've written about it in much more detail at Sexy Confessions.

Untitled Children's Adventure

One of the most mysterious pieces in my collection is what appears to be a 'novel' written by Guy when he may have still been in school. It's untitled, though otherwise complete with a contents listing and everything.

I've seen mention in a number of articles of a children's novel that Guy wrote long ago. I'd assumed at the time that those were mentions of Badger Island, which was written almost two decades before it was eventually published by Julia McRae Books in 1993. However, perhaps some of those mentions really referenced this book. I'll have to go back and find the articles and look at the context.

It's handwritten, but in a style that doesn't look like Guy's does on the many handwritten manuscripts I own. However, it's also very legible cursive, as if it was written by someone still in school. That's backed up by odd spelling and punctuation errors, of the sort that Guy doesn't tend to make. Further evidence comes from the fact that the last five chapters are written in a Grafton Exercise Book, of the sort that I remember well from my schooldays, with 'Guy Newman Smith' carefully printed on the front in pencil. The earlier 22 chapters are handwritten in a generic blue notebook.

I haven't read it yet (soon!), but the chapter headings suggest that it's a crime adventure like you'd read in the old boys papers, which have been well chronicled as the biggest influence on Guy's writing.

I'm tempted to guess that this dates back to his days writing for The Tettenhall Observer, when he was in his teens. It's possible that it was one of the serials that they printed, as I don't have those for reference, but I do have a list of what they ran and it doesn't look like it. Certainly most of his serials for that paper featured a detective named Stan Webster, whilst this features a crime reporter named Dick Walker tackling the villainous Delaney Gang.

Update: Shane Agnew has the handwritten copies of the Tettenhall Observer stories and the handwriting matches this.

Here's the chapter listing:

  1. The Delaney Gang
  2. Murder in the Night
  3. Death of a Detective
  4. The Spy
  5. Exit Colin Jones
  6. Delaney Overhears
  7. The Spy Strikes Again
  8. The Delaney Gang Visit a Jeweller's Shop
  9. A Train Load of Trouble Arrives in Glasgow
  10. Walker Fights the Gang
  11. An Attempt on Walker's Life
  12. Walker Takes a Swim
  13. A Raid on the Cinema
  14. Delaney Receives a Letter
  15. Delaney is Given a Bowl of Flowers
  16. An Adventure at the Gun Factory
  17. Delaney Hears That His Plan Failed
  18. The Chief Inspector Gives Orders
  19. Walker Finds Things Difficult
  20. Death of a 'Fence'
  21. The Gang are Unlucky
  22. A Tramp Has a Surprise
  23. Walker Searches the Hideout
  24. Enter the Police
  25. Unmasked
  26. Showdown
  27. The Case is Closed

There's no mention of a word count, but there seem to be about a hundred words to a page and there are 148 pages, so I'm thinking about 15,000 words. That would technically make this a long novelette.

Starlite

According to Guy's own notes on the title page of my typescript copy, Starlite was his first novel, written in 1966.

It's a 34,000 word adventure novel centered around a gamekeeper, a real life passion of Guy's that has been referenced in many of his novels and especially his Gamekeeping and Shooting for Amateurs which has bene published in five editions by four different publishers. The title is taken from the lead character, Jim Starlite.

The plot can be roughly discerned by merely perusing the chapter titles:

  1. The Gangs Unite
  2. The Coming of Starlite
  3. Partridge Shooting and After
  4. A Discovery
  5. The Fight at the Flying Horse
  6. Murder!
  7. A New Ally
  8. Night Raiders
  9. Theft and Recovery
  10. Wild Geese
  11. Poetic Justice
  12. Fire!
  13. The Boy in the River
  14. Nick Fletcher Changes Sides
  15. Carmody Plans a Coup
  16. The Boss
  17. Starlite's Secret

Rebel Star

Again backed up by Guy's own notes on my typescript, Rebel Star was Guy's second novel and he suggests that it was written around 1969. However, I also own the handwritten manuscript, which lists what are presumably start and end dates underneath its chapter headings: 15/2/71 to 26/2/71.

Written by hand in a W.H. Smith's Loose Leaf Pad for Students and Offices, it ran to 40,000 words, not bad for an unpublished novelist to put together in a mere eleven days. However, only two pages have seen print, in the self-published 1976 comic book, Adventure Strip Weekly.

It's a story about the rise, fall and rise of Kevin Fox, the 'Wonder Boy of Football', who rose from playing in secret, because his public school only allowed rugby, to playing for his national team.

Again the chapter titles highlight the story well:

  1. Where Angels Fear to Tread
  2. The Goal That Broke a City's Heart
  3. The Big Chance
  4. Re-United
  5. The Shape of Things to Come
  6. Deadly Rivals
  7. A Dream Come True
  8. The Rise to Fame
  9. The Weakness of a Star
  10. Disaster!
  11. The Long Road Back
  12. The Taming of a Rebel
  13. The True Reward

Dreamtime

Certainly the most published of Guy's unpublished novels, Dreamtime, a science fiction story, was at least partially serialised in a magazine. However, it didn't finish its run, so remains unpublished in complete form.

That magazine is Nexus, 'the international fan magazine' run by Mike & Gloria Gay. It published the first five chapters of Dreamtime across issues 6, 7 and 8. Issue 6 is dated Spring 1982 and it appears to have been a quarterly.

My copy is an odd hybrid. Chapter one is a carbon copy typescript but the rest is handwritten inside an Alliance Building Society diary for 1958. It takes up most of the book, running through to 25th September.

The word count is 60,000 and it runs twelve chapters.

The Adventures of Guy of Warwick

At 15,000 words, The Adventures of Guy of Warwick would qualify only as a novelette rather than a novel, but then many of his early novels, from Starlite on, were technically novellas.

It's a dramatisation of Guy of Warwick, nowadays best known as a tourist attraction in Stratford-upon-Avon, but, in his day (or so the legends go), one of King Arthur's knights of the Round Table.

Guy had long been fascinated by his noble namesake and had written a 3,500 word non fiction article on him, which he had pitched to Blackwood's Magazine, though I don't believe it ever saw print.

I don't know a date but the typescripts of both the article and the novelette are stamped Caerlaverock, Guy's address in Tamworth before he moved to the Black Hill. However, on the cover of the novelette, the original stamp was for Burnt Hill House, his previous address in Tamworth.

Fireside Tales and Anecdotes

Clearly this set of articles and short stories was aimed at pitching a stack of unpublished material as a single entity, but it never happened, which isn't surprising given that the format is late Victorian.

I have no idea who it was pitched to, but I have this hand-written contents sheet and most of the articles and stories in various forms.

The contents are:

Word counts vary from 3,000 to 5,000 words with a total around 63,200.

The Crabs and Other Stories

Another compilation, this one was at least just of short stories and had an actual aim, pitched to the Polish market which was publishing much of Guy's back catalogue and were eager for more.

Guy's note to me when I bought this stack from him was 'Collection of early GNS stories; some from London Mystery, 2 original Crabs stories; several unpublished. This book was only ever published in Poland.'

I don't believe it ever actually saw print, though I do believe it reached typescript form as I have more than one copy of Curse of the White Rhinocerous and one is a carbon typescript that begins on page 162.

The contents would have been:

  1. The Crabs
  2. The Ghouls
  3. The Last Supper
  4. The Fish Creature
  5. It
  6. Vampire Village
  7. Roast Turkey
  8. The Gallows
  9. Devil Woman
  10. The Bocor
  11. The Doll
  12. The Murder House
  13. Child of Isis
  14. The Last Boot
  15. The Suitcase
  16. Red Alert
  17. The Splodge
  18. Curse of the White Rhinocerous
  19. Riders from Hell
  20. The Island of Sweet Music
  21. Aunt Mary and the Cats
  22. An Act of God
  23. Phoenix
  24. Triple Death
  25. The Searchers
  26. Hounds from Hades
  27. Crustacean Vengeance

Original publication details were:

Many of these stories were renamed from working titles or even published ones:

The Author's Note in the second image reads:

The stories in this anthology span the entire length of my horror writing from my first published The Searchers up to The Crabs and Sabat. Some formed the genesis of an idea for later full-length novels; Child of Isis led to Accursed, and The Doll to Manitou Doll. Several were published in magazines between 1972-82.

A few have been slightly rewritten but overall I decided to present the early stories in their original form. Their writing has afforded me much pleasure over the years, and one day whilst sorting through piles of copy manuscripts in the attic I decided to compile a selection of these offerings of horror in volume form in the hope that my band of faithful readers might enjoy them.


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