Simon Meek is a writer, designer and director of digital fiction based in Glasgow. His work explores the space between videogames, literature, film and the arts, creating new forms of storytelling experiences that engage the audience in powerful new ways. He has been named a V&A Design Champion for his pioneering work in digital storytelling, as well as being placed on Canongate’s Future 40 list of Scotland’s best contemporary storytellers.
Simon founded The Secret Experiment in 2013 – a development studio through which he collaborates with other artists and creative technologists to realise left-field digital content. The studio also operates as a indie-label to deliver ‘digital fiction from the underground’, where its titles draw thematic parallels to independent world cinema, experimental literature and installation arts. The Secret Experiment’s first release was Beckett, a surreal digital-noir that will be featured by the new V&A Dundee as part of its Scottish Design Galleries.
In addition to writing, designing and directing Beckett, Simon also composed the score to the work, which was featured on BBC6 Music via a limited-edition vinyl imprint. Beckett is available as a digital download via Steam and itch.io on PC and Mac platforms, and can also be ordered as a physical USB release direct from The Secret Experiment.
Reflecting upon his residency at Cove Park, Simon has written:
‘Cove Park provides a unique focus for creative exploration, with the duality of head-down practice and inspirational wanderings in its beautiful locale. And while the isolation is a powerful way to up productivity, meeting with other creatives from different artistic disciplines was also an inspirational part of the overall experience.
This short stint at Cove Park in 2016 was certainly instrumental in the creation of Beckett: ‘I left having come to terms with the work that I wanted to make. And in the final product, there are still traces to be found of this stay, including the final scene in the game on a shallow beach.’
Simon is currently working on Marnie Wakes: a multi-layered digital fiction that explores the life, personality traits and predicament of its conflicted protagonist. The whole experience is lead by the audience, who guide Marnie across a highly-visceral landscape built from childhood memories, looping fragments of the near-past, and decisions that will haunt her until the end of time. It is a montage of a person, an experience that is both poignant and touching – a reflection that we are never fully in control of our destiny or our animalistic self.
Marnie Wakes is in many ways a sister piece to Beckett, which explores the nature of reality and what it is to exist. Development of Marnie Wakes can be followed at www.marniewakes.wordpress.com
“Part detective story, part Dadist nightmare… A rare example of total genuine auteurism in the games world.” Rolling Stone. More on Beckett can be found at www.tsebeckett.blog
More on Beckett can be found at www.tsebeckett.blog