I'm Marko Susimetsä, a Finnish historical fiction, sci-fi and science writer. I've got a PhD in Adult Education and am interested in human motivation and all the stuff that make people different from each other. I've written several professional research papers and articles about learning motivation, internationalisation and management and I educate professional teachers for a living.
I created this blog to collect and share my reviews and ideas on two topics that are very close to my heart, but had no outlet elsewhere in my life: historical fiction and werewolf fiction. My interest in historical fiction is focussed mainly on the 17th century, but I love to read pretty much anything set during the Age of Sail - pirates included! When it comes to werewolves, I keep an eye out on innovative, different takes on the mythical creature. I've read too many blood-spattered stories of blood-thirsty monsters on a rampage and they cannot hold my interest for very long (unless they are very well written). I much rather read a more human story about werewolves, a story where they are more than just meat-munching monsters.
Somewhat related to these interests is my part-time hobby: writing. I've written stories on and off for most of my life, but I only became serious about it a few years ago when I had finished my doctoral studies (and other related studies) and could start working on my very own historical fiction novel. The following is a list of my published fiction, some of it in English and some in Finnish. In the distant past, I used to write fan-fiction for the Elite universe, short stories for a faculty magazine etc., but since I do not consider them representative examples of my current writing, I will not list them here.
Entombed - a horror short story (2016) by Ulla and Marko Susimetsä
Although I read werewolf novels and stories and I occasionally watch a horror film, I would never call myself a horror fan or aficionado. However, when a horror writing competition asking for 666 word stories, precisely, was announced, my wife and I were intrigued. Without ruining the story, I can only say that it mixes old horror with the new... The story was published with others like it in an anthology called 666 by Fantastic Books Publishing and includes a foreword by Michael Brookes.
Dying Star - an SF short story (2016)
In 2014, I took part in the Fantastic Short Science Fiction Competition 2014 and ended up winning the first prize with my sub-1500 word short story Dying Star. The story is a short commentary on the human drive to move on and neglect our past and what it could teach us. This story was published in a short story anthology with other great stories from the same competition in 2016, with a foreword by Robert Llewellyn.
The anthology can be found for sale as an e-book at Amazon and soon also in paperback.
Susiveri (Wolf Blood) - a werewolf short story (2015)
In 2014, I wrote a short story for the annual Finnish short story competition organised by the Portti magazine and it received accolades from the jury. Werewolves have long been one of my areas of interest and when I got a chance to combine that enthusiasm with my interest in historical fiction, I jumped at the chance. The short story won a honorary award and was published in the Portti magazine 3/2015 with a wonderful illustration drawn by one of the masters of the field.
Beyond Civilisation - an Elite Dangerous short story (2014)
My official sci-fi short story set in the Elite: Dangerous (PC game) universe, called Beyond Civilisation was published in the Elite Dangerous: Tales from the Frontier anthology by Fantastic Books Publishing in mid 2014. My story was designed to hearken back to the old pulp era sci-fi stories, but with a small twist: instead of the protagonist being the larger-than-life hero, capable of anything, the hero is actually a young man who wounds up helping the pulp hero on his mission.
I wrote a longer background piece on the story here.