I write thought provoking stories that mix science fiction with social comment, mainly in a recognisable near-future.
I am one of the writers for SciFutures and, as 2016 Author in Residence at Virtual Futures which was described by the Guardian as “the Glastonbury of cyberculture”, I was one of the masterminds behind the new Near-Future Fiction series and continue to be a lead curator. I am also a member of the Clockhouse London Writers and a member of the Alliance of Independent Authors.
I have two published novels, Fluence and Quantum Confessions, and two collections of sci-fi shorts, Eating Robots and Biohacked & Begging.
As the Author in Residence for Virtual Futures Salons I wrote stories on the new and exciting worlds of neurostimulation, bionic prosthetics and bio-art. These Salons bring together artists, philosophers, cultural theorists, technologists and fiction writers to consider the future of humanity and technology.
Recently, my focus has been on collaborating with experts to understand the work that’s going on in areas such as neuroscience, artificial intelligence and deep machine learning. From this I write short pieces of near-future science fiction as thought experiments and use them as a starting point for discussion between me, scientists and the public.
I’m interested in creating and contributing to debate about potential futures.
Please feel free to contact me.
More about me…
Hippie-punk, religious-squatter, bureaucrat-anarchist; I thrive on contradictions. The tension they create fuels my slightly skewed fictional worlds and the complex characters that inhabit them. It’s hard to describe the sheer delight I get from taking reality, nudging it out of kilter and seeing what happens.
I was a teenager in a small market town in the UK when punk hit the scene and its ethos and energy rushed through me and my generation. It felt as if we could stick two fingers up to the establishment and do whatever we wanted, however we wanted to do it. I’m sure that’s a familiar feeling for every generation of teenagers, but there’s no denying that punk provoked a reaction. It was also the era of free festivals and the peace convoy; to a teenager at a time when nuclear war threatened to end the world at any moment the free festivals like Stonehenge seemed truly post-apocalyptic. I loved them. The mix of hippies, hells angels and punks all co-existing (fairly) peacefully without the police was an incredibly formative experience. I’ve been to festivals every year since and still find them a great way to re-calibrate normal.
Being a squatter and being in a cult were both out there experiences but not as dissimilar as they might seem at first glance; they both had a strong ideological desire for non-conformity and strong, albeit different, moral codes. That’s the sort of realisation that makes me want to wobble the world to see what falls out.
I’ve had some fun on the journey from punk inspired teenager to anarchy inspired bureaucrat and more often than not I had a foot in more than one camp at a time: as an unwelcome hippie at punk gigs; a religious cult member in the hedonistic squatter scene; or a would-be anarchist working as a bureaucrat. Even where I live in Fitzrovia we see ourselves as a village in the heart of London, as an enclave of difference standing out against the corporate onslaught of blandness (but close enough in case we need it).
That’s only a small insight into the inspirations and experiences that helped form me, Stephen Oram the author. And, if I’m asked why I write I have more than one answer; it’s a mixture of wanting to create something entertaining, thinking I’ve got something to say and needing something to keep me out of mischief. One thing is for sure though, I’d love to set off some small firecrackers of thought to light the world slightly differently inside your head!
Thanks for taking the time to stop by my website. I hope you find something you like – maybe some flash fiction, a short story or a full-blown book.
If you like listening to authors read their work, here’s some of my public readings for you to enjoy…
FaceBook: Stephen Oram Author
I also have a mailing list called PITH. Emails to subscribers are infrequent and fairly random, but always short and pithy. I don’t promote it widely, avoiding the ‘subscribe now and get a free gift’ approach, but you can sign up at https://tinyurl.com/PITHLIST if you wish. It’s worth saying that I have no issue with someone signing up and then unsubscribing if they don’t like it.