A 2012 novel by

A New Novel by Sam Penny, a scenario of our civilization in the next 85 years

Front and Back cover photography courtesy of NASA

This is one possible scenario of our civilization's future.
The actions we take today determine if it is to be our most probable fate.

LATEST PR NEWS: Was A Time When has received an Honorable Mention award in five of five 2012 Book Festivals, proving it to be a literary success. Penny says, "It would have been nice to win First Place, but professional recognition is important, too." He admits, "My story hits too close to the truth to be a financial success".

Sam Penny Sam Penny, author is the author of a new novel entitled Was a Time When. On December 27, 2011, the book was uploaded and published as a Kindle book and can be purchased at Amazon for immediate download. Its cost is $3.98.

The hardcopy print version was approved January 20, 2012, and is available for immediate shipment from Create Space at a cost of $14.98.

Email sam@WasATimeWhen.com if you wish to review, comment and contribute to the buzz about this book. Tell me of your forum and audience. A limited number of free copies of the hardcopy book or a download of a .PDF or .PRC file are available to qualified reviewers.





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About Was a Time When

This 244 page science fiction novel tells of a possible fate of the world in the next 85 years during the Great Collapse of the human civilization. Some say it will never happen. Others say it cannot happen that fast. A few say it is inevitable.

For reference, I have chosen November 20, 2011 to be the start of Was a Time When. I know what happened before that time; I am not sure what happens after that time. As time passes we will all know more.

The natural disasters I describe are expected to occur in the coming years and their timing is left to Nature for adjudication, but what is done NOW by humanity determines whether or not many of the societal changes I describe in the book happen in the future or not.

This writing of this tale actually began in 2006 as an exercise for the National Novel Writing Month. I  decided I could write a novel in 30 days. I chose to write the autobiography of my fictional great-grandson, Sam, yet-to-be-born in 2015. I did in fact write about a third of the book in the first thiry days. It took much longer to finish, but at least I set the tone and direction of the story.

My great-grandson Sam will live through the greatest cultural transition ever experienced by the human race. I encased his memoirs in a short story telling of an expedition of Neu-human archeologists from a thousand years in the future, 3100 A.D., who return to the Pacific Coast searching for their roots. They would find Sam's recorded life story and hear a first-hand account of the “Great Collapse” of human society as they had come to call it.

As the story matured it became necessary to divorce the familial relationship between Sam and me. I remained as the author, and a new character named Sam Hardy took over as the main character.

Sam Hardy's life begins at the peak of the tremendous spurt of technology and social advance in the second decade of the 21st century, powered by what many still thought at the time would be an infinite supply of energy and a stable world of commerce and trade. Sam writes the history of humanity's course through the transitions that result from expected natural disasters, resource depletion, climate change, over-population, and economic and cultural failure as his family and tribe struggle to learn to live in a new world of limited resources and crashing dreams.

There are many possible worlds our progeny could face, but in my mind the world described here unfortunately seems to be one of the more probable. My goal is to tell of some of the changes that can be expected as our society searches for its future, and as those technologies and resources on which our civilization depend fall away. Only by looking at our possible futures can we find a way to survive the troubles that face our society.

This is a tale of retrospection, as seen through the eyes of someone who lives through it and remembers that there Was a Time When things were so different. And yet, in Sam's final words, there is still hope:

“So this is goodbye. Maybe I have been wrong in my pessimism and damnation of humanity, and there really is a future for mankind on this planet. At least I have joined a group that is beginning the steps to future recovery. God willing, I will have the chance to watch that future blossom. I pray this band I join will build the roots of a better civilization than what my peers built for the last one.”

A New Novel by Sam Penny, a scenario of our civilization in the next 85 years