Tom Barrie Simmons


I spent the early years of my life in Kent, across the river from the Castle and Cathedral of Rochester. Leaving school at 15 I soon started my own business in marketing. Then eight years were spent learning how to run a major manufacturing company, after which I set up my own R&D business.

There followed a sabbatical after a family tragedy, leading to a change of direction. I sold all my assets and started writing.

Stories of Benjamin was my debut novel, written for my daughter to read to her step sister. Unsatisfied with a mainstream publisher’s offer, I obtained an order from W H Smith, formed Spellbound Books Ltd, and Stories of Benjamin was published.

For 7 years after my father died, I cared for my disabled mother whilst writing poetry, short stories, and becoming a victim support volunteer.  I then raised money for the Merlin Project by driving in the Plymouth Dakar Rally.

While living in Poland, I formed Emptymonkey.com. a forum for philosophy and arts, and made a short film – ‘Nightwalk’ with music by Radiorobotnik.

There followed a backpacking trip across Canada, the USA, the Baja California desert and finishing up in Cuba and Jamaica where I was invited to Ghost write the memoirs of an international drug smuggler.

For the last couple of decades I have lived in the village of Polruan, where looking upriver, I can see Ferryside, once the home of Daphne DuMaurier.


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