About Wilf Morgan & 88Tales Press
Wilf's has been writing fiction for many years - his first forays were high-brow affairs involving his Star Wars toys. "Luke Skywalker and the Mud Monster" was a particularly literary triumph. After that, many short stories followed.
His first novel was 'Damocles : Future History', a sci-fi epic which taught him a lot about writing super-long novels that were really, really like Star Wars and Star Trek smushed together...
Following on quickly from the rough and tumble of space warfare was the rough and tumble of dark, dingy crime-ridden thrillers. 'Lost Angels' followed a young man as he climbed the criminal underworld.
It was at this time that Wilf started 88Tales as an independent publisher - so he could tell stories and hopefully entertain others in the way he had been entertained by books his whole life.
The first actual 88Tales book was 'The Assassin's Wedding' ('Lost Angels' was not included as Wilf felt it wasn't quite up to the best level of quality he wanted for 88Tales).
88Tales proved to be lots of fun and Wilf enjoyed writing whatever genre or style of books that grabbed him - from the Spike Milligan-style whimsy of 'Santa Claus and the Night of a Thousand Rolling Heads' to the thriller action of novella 'That Time in Honduras'.
The current project is fantasy adventure series, 'The Arilon Chronicles' (prompted by Wilf's children complaining he hadn't written anything they could read!). Although aimed primarily at 8-12's, the books are enjoyed just as much by adults.
The collection of stories continues to grow and 88Tales has an exciting and fun future!
About The Books
88Tales books come in two flavours;
The '88Tales Alpha' imprint contains books for younger readers, up to roughly the early teens. This includes the 'Arilon Chronicles' books.
The '88Tales' imprint contains all books aimed at general or adult readers. This includes books like 'The Assassin's Wedding'.
It's always good for individual readers to be able to gravitate toward whatever books take their fancy - whether that's adults reading 'The Arilon Chronicles' or some younger readers enjoying 'The Assassin's Wedding'. But it always helps to give readers that bit of guidance so they can make their own decisions.
The general philosophy for 88Tales is that each story - whether it is a short, a novella, a novel or a book series - be a quality, entertaining read and, if possible, give some insight, simple or complex, into some aspect of our lives as human beings.
An example is 'The Cotton Keeper'. While delivering a tale of three adventuring chimpanzees in the era of civil war in Sierra Leone, it also delivers an educational insight into a period of massive upheaval for that country.
A slightly different example is how 'The Arilon Chronicles' deal with various issues of identity faced not just by children but adults as well such as fear, bravery, the tapestry of ideas and beliefs that make up the world, and even what makes a person good or bad. Heady philosophical questions, indeed! Fortunately there are also lots of flying galleon chases and sword fights woven in..!
Diversity of form is important in 88Tales, hence we have everything from interactive adventure books (Trust Me, I'm a Thief) to Shakespearean homage (The Shakespeare Adventures) to fan fiction (Never Die Last).
About the School Visits
After writing several novels, novellas and short stories for adults and children, I decided the only thing better than writing stories is sharing them!
I run fun, interactive sessions for Years 4-7 (roughly 8-12 year olds). Designed to get students excited about reading and creative writing, they promote curiosity, creativity and can be tailored to suit teaching needs.
Above all, they encourage children to see that books (whether you read them or write them) are fun!
But the feedback opposite describes the benefits better than I ever could!
For more information, please get in touch with the email links below.
I work at a secondary school in Nottinghamshire and I asked Wilf if he could come and talk to around 30 year 7 students about his children's books.
The students really enjoyed Wilf's presentation and some purchased books. After Wilf's visit, I found that students who were normally reluctant readers started to show an interest in books and most of them chose to continue reading the Arthur Ness books for their daily reads!!
A big thanks to Wilf for coming and talking to our students - it really has made a huge difference in keeping them engaged and excited in reading!
- Evelyn Welch, Reading Recovery Co-ordinator, South Wolds Academy, Nottinghamshire