welcome, this is the official website for David J Rodger, writer and game designer

Science Fiction Dark Fantasy

image of David J Rodger science fiction and fantasy cyberpunk horror author and RPG writer

David J. Rodger is a British author of science fiction dark fantasy with eight novels under his belt. He is also the creator of Yellow Dawn - The Age of Hastur, an RPG that blends Cthulhu Mythos and Cyberpunk themes into a post-apocalyptic setting. His books cross many boundaries to deliver a new and exciting fusion of ideas and genres. Critics describe his work as character driven, richly plotted, delivering tension and drama with a quick narrative style, and punching far above his weight as an indie author. Each book is stand-alone and can be read in any order, but occupy a shared universe allowing you to build a deeper knowledge with every story. He has written for SFX and had short stories published in the UK, US and Canada. Supported by Bristol Fantasy & Science Fiction Society. Represented by Floyd Hayes. Read more...

"Atmospheric and Creepy" - Alison Flood, The Guardian (UK)

"...the best [dark] Sci-Fi I've read in ten years" - Floyd Hayes, former Creative Director of Cunning (US)





Contact: If you have any questions about his work, which book to read first or simply want to get in touch then use this contact form.

Novels

SET BEFORE YELLOW DAWN OCCURRED
Cover of God Seed, new fiction for cyberpunk horror by David J Rodger Cover for Dante's Fool, new fiction for cyberpunk horror written by David J Rodger cover for Iron Man Project, cyberpunk thriller written by David J Rodger Cover for Edge, cyberpunk horror in a snowboard ski resort written by David J Rodger Cover for Living in Flames is a Bristol horror story by British sci-fi dark fantasy author David J Rodger themes of Cthulhu Mythos and Cyberpunk cover for Dog Eat Dog, new fiction for SSF with zombies written by David J Rodger
SET AFTER YELLOW DAWN OCCURRED
cover for Dog Eat Dog, new fiction for SSF with zombies written by David J Rodger Cover for The Black Lake - a ghost story within the Cthulhu Mythos by British Sci-Fi & Dark Fantasy Author David J Rodger Cover for The Social Club - a dark science fiction thriller set in post-apocalyptic London

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Yellow Dawn - RPG

Cover of Yellow Dawn, a post-apocalyptic RPG role-playing game for cyberpunk and Cthulhu Mythos set in post-apocalypse, by David J Rodger Cover of Shadows of the Quantinex, a Yellow Dawn scenario that gives more background to Yellow Dawn, created by David J Rodger

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Testimonials

Testimonials reviews and fan feedback on David J RodgerVery Stephen King feel to it. Excellent story. Tightly written and fast-paced. – Simon Pyne - DOJO

H.P. Lovecraft would be proud of you – Floyd Hayes, New York ( Dog Eat Dog )

I’d not heard of David J. Rodger, being more of a Rankin/Dexter fan! But it was suggested that if I liked crime thrillers I try Dante’s Fool…I was hooked, really enjoyed it. Strong, believable characters and a storyline with the thought-provoking twist of the occult. - Sue Pay (Dante's Fool )

…having both a lot of science fictional and supernatural horror elements, it still manages to maintain a grittier realism then many less speculative tomes. - Reflexiones Finales ( Dog Eat Dog )

Really engaging characters and plenty of pace. ‘Unputdownable' is such an overused phrase, but this is in that category.” ( Iron Man Project )

The richness of the descriptions and characters make you get into the story so much that you don't want the book to have an end. ( EDGE)

I love this collection of short stories. There is a darkness that lingers with you afterwards, a darkness I enjoy going back to. For me it’s like Blade Runner met William Gibson’s Sprawl Trilogy in a bar, and then H.P. Lovecraft’s Great Old Ones decided to camp out outside that bar and peer inside the windows. ( Songs of Spheres)

I totally enjoy your writing and it should be spread to all the readers in the world- @GameWriter

A compact grenade of sharp tech ideas, (in)human fury, revenge, ancient bloodlines and chilling supernatural horror, all set to explode in your mind as it builds to it’s gruesome climax. The tale rips forward at a frenetic pace, barely lets up. The overall flavor feels like a Guy Ritchie movie as inspired by H.P. Lovecraft by way of early Gibson. This is not to say it’s derivative in any way. The universe he has built is his own and with each book the lore gets rich, deeper and more compelling. The tight cast of characters play off each other well, strong dialogue and surprising twists with the interpersonal dynamics keeps the reader turning the pages. I devoured this book in two days, staying way past my bed time in my eagerness to uncover the dark secrets and how it would all play out. A thrilling read and recommended to anyone, even readers new to DJR’s world. ( Living in Flames )

I've gotta tell you, and I've said it before, you remain a big inspiration about how to 'approach' things. I'll be sure to talk you up to all my literary chums. You should be selling millions of copies in my opinion.

The main characters are wonderfully described and you really get under their skin. It's a wonderful story with the typical unexpected turns. It's not the usual pulpy Mythos story either, it's subtle and mature affair. I can really recommend this book for everyone, especially Stephen King, Cthulhu and cyberpunk fans. ( EDGE )At one point when I got off the subway I had to sit on the horrid wooden seats to continue reading, despite being on my way to work. ( Dog Eat Dog )

I read a lot of SF and Fantasy and I would say that DeD is definitely in the Top 10 percent of what I read ( Dog Eat Dog )

Great story, full of dread and menace – Pete Haughie, Leipzig (Arnos Vale)

Hauntingly engaging, spooky and intriguing, Cloudy Head will stay with you for days. (Cloudy Head)

I'm starting to pick up your style now. Things are never as they seem. When you're halfway through the book, what you are guessing as the end, is way off! When you think its done, there is more. Really hard to guess whats next even. Kept me reading until 5am!” ( Dante's Fool )

The atmosphere and setting is brilliant (Devil's Spring)

My copy of Dog Eat Dog arrived today. I sat down just to flick through it; next time I looked up I was 84 pages in! Utterly gripping, your best work yet. ( Dog Eat Dog )

Without doubt David J Rodger's best to date; I've read Iron Man and God Seed and you can see a real maturity, a strong clear narrative that allows the post-apocalyptic zombie dystopia to bleed through like a dismembered corpse under a cotton sheet ;) Some really chilling moments, some great action and a fully-realised and plausible shattered society. I cannot wait to see more novels set in the world of Yellow Dawn..please, Mr Rodger! ( Dog Eat Dog )

A palpable hit. I read this twice in quick succession, both times getting goosebumps in the early Dead City scenes, and later with the tales final lines. The greater insight into the nature of the zed wave given here and in “The Tainted Moor” add a new dimension of creeping horror to an already terrifying phenomenon. Bravo! (House of Heavenly Light)

A likeable and believable central character - Even though he is clearly a genius, he only sees his inadequacies; very human! ( EDGE )

The best novel to date. A solidly likeable and believable central character, an excellent portrayal of isolation and mental disintegration, and the horror elements were not clumsy or in-your-face, but fitted with the overall narrative like a glove. ( The Black Lake)

Hi. Just wanted to express to you how good your short story is and how much I enjoyed reading it. Your writing, the relentless pace and self-assured voice really draws one in. It's very clean, sharp and dynamic. – Irini, New York (House of Heavenly Light)

Genuinely scary stuff. There's some truly disturbing imagery and ideas here, executed with a deft hand. I love the echoes of Lovecraft's “The Colour Out Of Space” and “The Whisperer in Darkness”, and the greater inclusion of the Hastur mythology in the world of Yellow Dawn adds a wonderfully nightmarish aspect to an already chilling atmosphere. – Chris H, Bristol (The Tainted Moor)

The setting provokes an atmosphere of disquiet and unease. As the tle unfolded the quiet beginning of it developed into frightening and sickening revelations and the end left me feeling thoroughly unsettled. In a good way of course. That hollow from things left in a manner that doesn't seem right in the ways of the universe at all. Twisted and perverse in a very dark fashion. I look forward to learning more about the universe of Yellow Dawn, and I love the aspect in which the “influence” and “Infection” originates. Enjoyed the read and the styles of writing you have used to approach both House of Heavenly Light and The Tainted Moor. – Sammi, Arizona (The Tainted Moor)

Really fantastic sci-fi/horror novel. Some genuinely terrifying zombies in it too! – Adam Lee ( Dog Eat Dog)

I can't wait to put my hands on another of David's novels and same will happen to you if you give 'Edge' a well deserved chance. ( EDGE)

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What's New

Updated periodically

What's New - updates from science fiction horror writer David J Rodger

Just got back from 10 days bouncing between Bristol, Amsterdam, and Malta. Soaking up inspiration and decompressing. Recently invited to attend BristonCon Fringe event, where I gave a sneak preview of the new short story I was commissioned to write for the Achtung! Cthulhu anthology – Dark Tales (due for commercial release in December’14). Had pleasure of reading alongside Peter Sutton (separately), who asked if I would like to put together an article about my genre for his blog. You can read it here: Writing the Cthulhu Mythos Into The Future.

Great interview by Michael Tresca which he posted up on Examiner - covering current work in progress. Read interview here. Also had notice from editor about upcoming appearance I've been scheduled for. Keep Dec 6th/13th 2014 (not sure which date is confirmed yet) free in your diary for the next Dragonmeet Fantasy and RPG convention at the Novatel in Hammersmith, London. I’ll be there with a posse of writers and the publisher involved in the upcoming Dark Tales anthology, a collection of short stories that expand and define the universe of Achtung! Cthulhu. Should be a bloody good gig.

It's been a few months of flying below-the-radar. Working on four new novels. Making good progress. Expected to finish Oakfield this summer with a launch ready for autumn 2014. Meanwhile Broken Fury and Sunder Gloom tick along at a comfortable pace. This year is all about balance between writing and living (and work). So these two books are more about having fun with writing; rather than feeling like a chore. The fourth book, Rise of the Iconoclast is currently on a slow simmer.

Spring this year I commissioned an illustrator / designer to come up with 12 novel covers for me. I've approved the initial concept. Very excited by what he's come up with. Expect them to be finished this summer. The plan is to relaunch the existing 8 books with a consitent brand, and then drip-feed the other four as each novel is finished.

I had to interrupt the novel writing to switch to coming up with an original piece of short fiction for Achtung! Cthulhu. It's an RPG setting, Mythos horror in the frame of World War 2. The editor approached me a few weeks ago to commision to me write them something, as part of an anthology of shorts to expand and pad out the universe. The deadline loomed out of nowhere but I managed to nail it: 6,000 words in 3 days. Very pleased. More info....

The superbly put together gamer blog "Role Play Craft" posted a very flattering review of Yellow Dawn – The Age of Hastur.

Nice mention of my work in new realease "Cthulhu (Gothic Dreams) Dark Fantasy, Horror and Supernatural Movies" written by Gordon Kerr and foreword by John Harlacher (Weird Tales magazine) - it's a showcase of the best modern Mythos work out there, very flattering to be referenced within its pages.

Boston (Greater Area) Cop Goes Back to Pick Through Body of my Work - nice glimpse of a fan looking for the interlinks between the different novels. Arizona girl posts picture of her favourite books… Forget selfies, shelfies are where it’s at! I got tagged on this via Facebook by a girl from Arizona. A real mix of old and new covers too. 6 years of history right there. Deeply flattering.

New Year's Eve. My 2014 started with cocktails, fat-tunes and a big grin on my face. Harvey Nichols Cocktails and Alfresco Disco Secret Location.

Leading up to the end of 2013 was an incredible few weeks. I completed the final edit of the new novel, The Social Club and just recently made the formal launch announcement. I've also rather wonderfully gained the support and backing of Bristol's Fantasy & Science Fiction Society. This culminated in the society arranging a launch party for the book. A wonderful day. Great mix of familiar and unfamiliar faces. Lots of mingling took place. Felt like a proper party. I read from The Social Club, did some Q+A plus selling and signing copies of the book. View full write-up and photos here.

I also recently took part in this year's BristolCon - I was on the panel for "Routes to Publication" and read from The Social Club. View write-up about event.

Photo of Dave Bradley and David J Rodger with a copy of The Social Club My plan was to take a month off from writing and then get back to novel number 9 and 10, Oakfield and Sunder Gloom, both of which I started this summer. But instead I started working through a stack of short story ideas I've had sitting around for about 11 years. The result is 14 new shorts in 6 weeks. I'm really pleased as it means I'm well on my way to having enough to put together a new collection, much like Songs of Spheres which I released in 2012.

Photo of Arizona_fan_holding_advance_copy_of_The_Social_Club I've started to get some great feedback from advance copies of the new novel - The Social Club- that went out recently. Here's a fan in Arizona holding hers. Click the photo to learn more.

I've done a couple of interviews. One was by John Houlihan, author of The Trellborg Monstrosities, a fantastic novella for Achtung! Cthulhu - you can read the interview on his website. The other interview was by Toronto based dark fiction writer, Mary Rajotte. Known for her atmospheric and creepy tales that explore myth, dream and nightmare, she very kindly took time out of her hectic schedule to run this with me. Read the interview on The Examiner website.

Since getting back from the Arctic in June I had one month of finger-blurring progress with a new novel, Oakfield, before August's no-writing regime kicked in. It’s a cyberpunk / horror story set in the South West of England and is a direct prequel to the novel God Seed. I've been posting chapters as I finish them on my blog.

So the plan for the rest of the year is to continue writing Oakfield - aim to have that finished by end of March 2014 After that I'll be turning my focus onto the novel I started writing in May - Sunder Gloom - which kind of struck me as a an idea whilst driving back to Bristol from Bath one sunny afternoon and I thought: it would be great to have a sequel to the Bristol based horror story called Living in Flames. It would be good to reveal the consequences of what happened at the end of that book.

Got Kindle? You can now buy all of my books from Amazon for Kindle. I've taken full advantage of the great pricing model Amazon offers authors and made all these novels available for £2.90 ($3.99 USD or 3.20 euros. Browse available books here. Alternatively, you can buy them as iBooks via iTunes store. And of course, you can still get everything in paperback from LULU.

You can follow updates on work in progress via my blog - click here to view

Previous Highlights

September 2013 @thesprezz - the designer behind the UTOC Public Safety Notice poster that he created for Yellow Dawn, and which became a bit of a viral meme several months ago, has created another lovely bit of artwork for me; this time a promotional poster for the business cult The Power of Eight Group. You can see the poster here. If you want to know more about the PO8 then I recommend you read Iron Man Project . August 2013 Fantastic review of "Songs of Spheres", my collection of short stories. This is on the back of a spate of really positive reviews about other pieces of my work. My cyberpunk crime thriller "Dante's Fool" was compared by a fan to Ian Rankin / Colin Dexter- which made me go wow, bloody hell. The big site Reflexiones Finales did a killer review of my novel "Dog Eat Dog": a cyperpunk, post-apocalyptic, cthulhu mythos mash-up. And The Unspeakable Oath - A Digest of Arcane Lore for Cthulhu Mythos Roleplaying Games - has included a review of my role-playing game "Yellow Dawn - The Age of Hastur" within their hallowed pages. I wrote all this goodness up as a press release, which you can download here. Do please share it. June 2013 Mostly taken up with travelling. I did a rather fantastic road trip around the Arctic: read blog and see pics here. • September - December 2012 Burn out and life issues. I took a break from writing. Went to Sicily and New York. Sicily was very special for me as I finally got to see where Jean-Luc Korda and the Carthew Trust have their HQ in the novel Iron Man Project). And New York, is, well... New York. *beams a smile* Fun hang out with my publicist (and partner in crime over there) who shares my love of The Inn Ear - on Spring Street - real ale and whiskey chasers. Check out his most recent business creation: World's Fastest Agency. • August 2012 Magical medieval city of Krakow - including the jaw-dropping salt mines and the harrowing murder camps of Auschwitz and Birkenau. • July 2012 My Yellow Dawn player group completed a chilling year-long campaign; the epic and potent Chaosium product - Horror on the Orient Express. It was a definitive proof of concept, the flexibility of Yellow Dawn: being able to absorb a major story from another system into it. Read session notes here. • June 2012 I locked myself away in a remote cottage in the isolated West Pembrokeshire for a week; lighthouses, storms and writing. Bliss. • May 2012 I was in the incredible island nation of Malta, one of the most incredible places on Earth - left a deep lingering impression on my brain that led to me coming back and writing a novel in 7 weeks (The Black Lake - due for release August 2012). • April 2012 saw me riding the Orient Express (Pullman). • March 2012 I relaunched the epic, plot-rich, globe-spanning campaign Shadows of the Quantinex, a vast investigation that allows characters to uncover the truth behind what caused the apocalyptic event known as Yellow Dawn and join a race against time to stop the architects of that cataclysm from doing it again. In the same month I launched my 7th book,Songs of Spheres, a collection of my favourite hand-picked short stories in one book; press release. • February 2012 Completed a year of work updating my RPG Yellow Dawn - The Age of Hastur (2.5). (press release); accompanied by a hardback version. In the same month I launched 6th novel, Living in Flames, which is a near-future (cyberpunk) horror story set in Bristol, England (download press release). Read a review of Living in Flames. • January 2012, 2011 was certainly an interesting year for me - you can read my highlights of 2011 here. • November '11, Great News: I scored a five star review on Amazon for my novel, Edge; very pleased it and weaves into the overwhelmingly positive feedback I've been gaining for other work: makes all the effort worthwhile. • October '11, I wrote a free scenario called Kingdom of Shadows: based on Roman Polanski's classic occult thriller – The Ninth Gates; it can be used for Yellow Dawn, Call of Cthulhu or any RPG system that handles the supernatural. • August '11, I took a step away from the brain-breaking task of reworking Yellow Dawn to put together a little study of the occult symbolism and meanings behind my favourite Polanksi film, The Ninth Gate. • July '11, I penned a little article about the "Curious Case of the Sandstone Wall". • June '11, article about my entrance into the Amazon Kindle market. • May'11 I died 3 times in one night in the city-wide Zombie chase event, 2.8 hours later: pics & vids here. Feb'11 Meanwhile, it's been a great start to the year. In 41 days I wrote 14 short stories; suffered some serious eye-ball burn. • Dec '10 I launched my 5th novel, Dog Eat Dog, the first to be set within this post-apocalyptic world of Yellow Dawn. SFX plug my work: Earth's greatest sci-fi magazine, SFX – plugs my novel Dog Eat Dog.. Examiner.com runs an interview with me : written by Michael Tresca, a piece about Yellow Dawn, its origins and my plans for the future of the RPG. Read here . Fantastic fan review – Murder At Sharky Point : great response for the dinner party game & murder mystery download. Read…

Audio story: Listen now

Masters of Chaos is a short story with a flavour of the cosmic dark fantasy of H.P.Lovecraft. It is one of fifteen short stories available in the collection Songs of Spheres, available in paperback or Kindle format. Below, you can listen to a sample reading by American voice artist Cody Johnson.