DUEL AMONG THE WINE GREEN SUNS
Written in collaboration with Michael Moorcock, in 1961. Published in three parts, in "The Time Centre Times" (A Publication of The Nomads of the Time Streams: The International Michael Moorcock Appreciation Society) beginning in June/July 1995. As by Simon Barclay. Illustrations by James Cawthorn (reprinted from New Worlds).
"Written in 1961 by Michael with then-regular collaborator Barrington J. Bayley, when they both lived in Kentish Town, London, it has lain hidden (and partially fragmented) since then, until it was unearthed earlier this year by John Davey during his researches for the definitive Moorcock bibliography. Even then, it seemed strangely incomplete, and so we contacted Barry Bayley who had more (but not all) of the manuscript, and then the detective work really began. Those of you reading Duel Among the Wine Green Suns will immediately notice connections with several of Mike's '60s S.F. novels, up to and including THE FINAL PROGRAMME, and it is obvious that certain ideas from Duel... were later used by him in other works..." - Time Centre Times 13 editorial, 1995.
"We offered it to Ted Carnell, hoping he might use it in New Worlds' sister magazine Science Fiction Adventures and when he turned it down we sort of assumed it was probably unpublishable and left it aside. Its title is "Duel Among the Wine Green Suns", a borrowing from Norse poetry of the Viking era which talked about 'the wine-red sea'.
In 1995 The Time Centre Times, the journal of the International Michael Moorcock Appreciation Society, got what they thought was the original manuscript from the Bodleian Library in Oxford. However when the editor John Davey approached me for permission to publish it became clear that all he had was the first 7,000 words. I found that I still had a file in which was a carbon copy of the later chapters, but this still left about 5,000 words missing. Furthermore someone had re-paginated the surviving manuscript, suggesting that further material had been removed. Neither Mike nor myself could explain any of this or remember what was in the missing section, so I wrote a new linking chapter to allow the plot to make sense (inasmuch as it ever had) and the TCT published it in three parts, under the name Simon Barclay.
I must say I got a great pleasure from reading it after all those years, and it wasn't nearly as bad as I had assumed! Certainly it abounds in ideas and undisciplined energy. Written in 1961, it also throws in what is now called 'cyberspace' or 'virtual reality'. Silicon chips hadn't been developed then; computers were still large. In order to be able to simulate a whole social world inside an ordinary sized cabinet we had it run on 'electron resonance plates', whatever they might be." - Barrington Bayley, 1998