Meta-fiction, historical fiction, narratives with many strands, creative non-fiction and memoir.
Three months mentoring.
'My debut novel, The Chameleon, was published in April 2018 by Salt. It's a work of literary fiction that examines how books and stories form the shared ground over which we communicate our individual experience. The narrator, John, is a book that can be any book who, at the beginning of the novel, begins an attempt to tell a story of his own.
My manuscript was initially with an agent, but I decided to submit to Salt on my own, so came to publication that way. I also run a bookshop, Burley Fisher Books, in East London, as well as being a director of Peninsula Press (a new indie publisher). Through the press, and a previous job a publisher, I have experience editing both fiction and non-fiction. Aside from manuscript and agent advice I would be happy to offer any insights I might be able to provide about the trade in general.'
Longlisted for the Desmond Elliott Prize 2019.
John is infinite.
He can become any book, any combination of words – every thought, act and expression that has ever been, or ever will be, written. Now 800 years old, John wants to tell his story.
Looking back over his life, from its beginnings with a medieval anchoress to his current lodgings beside the deathbed of a Cold War spy, John pieces together his tale: the love that held him together and, in particular, the reasons for a murder that took place in Moscow fifty years earlier, which set in train a shattering series of events.
Samuel Fisher’s debut, The Chameleon is a love story about books like no other, weaving texts and lives in a family tale that leads the reader on an extraordinary historical journey, a journey of words as much as of places, and a gripping romance.
'Be it a love story, a thriller or a work of history, a written account makes those it depicts last forever. Revelling in its own wizardry, The Chameleon weaves a captivatingly reflexive tale around the life-giving possibilities of the printed word … Fisher practices a deft sampling technique, mixing in snippets of literary classics into his tale and reflecting on their relevance. The result is a compelling narrative and a subtle meditation on literary history.' Hackney Citizen
'This is undoubtedly a literary novel about a family and relationships, but also it’s about a love of books and it’s a spy story. It’s not surprising that the author set up a bookshop, you can almost imagine him spending time rooting through the stock and absorbing stories for this novel.' Paul Burke, Nudge-Book Magazine
'Writing a book as the Book is no small feat. One would expect it to be formally inventive, rich with the works of others yet boundlessly original – replete with unusual vocabulary and recourse to every image ever written. It is a credit to the author and to Salt Publishing that The Chameleon carries it off with aplomb.' Venetia Welby, Review 31
Read more about Sam's debut novel The Chameleon here >>
Listen to Samuel on The Riff Raff Podcast