Modern Dickens Project


The Modern Dickens Project is a great opportunity for students from different majors to collaborate through the EMERGE program at Simpson College. This project brings together the Senior Management Seminar team and a team of English majors in order to market and produce a serial novel. Named for its similarity to Charles Dickens’ serial stories, the final project is a published novel containing a collection of chapters written by a range of aspiring Iowa authors.

To begin the novel, an opening chapter is selected, then posted online for others to read. Prospective writers then submit a continuing chapter for selection. Each submitted chapter is then reviewed by the English team and a winner is selected. That chapter is edited for continuity, posted to be read by other prospective writers, and the submission and selection process continues each month until the story is complete. While the novel takes shape, the Senior Management Seminar team works to publicize the project and market the final product.

Our latest novel, Defining Darrell, is available for purchase in paperback or for Kindle on Amazon.

Defining Darrell Cover

Who was Darrell Shanks? He was a brother who ‘accidentally’ shot his sister, a son whose actions tore apart his family, a lover who loved everyone but was only loved by one…and more. From the shotgun that changed his life to the shotgun that ended it, follow the story of Darrell through his eyes, the eyes of his sister, the eyes of his son, and the eyes of his lover…and murderer.


For more info on the Modern Dickens Project and to see more of our work, visit the Modern Dickens website.

To learn more about the EMERGE program, visit Simpson’s EMERGE page.