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Name: Sime~Gen
Creator: Jean Lorrah and Jacqueline Lichtenberg
Medium: books
Country of Origin:
External Links:
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Sime~Gen aka Sime/Gen and Sime-Gen is a Science Fiction shared universe in which Jean Lorrah and Jacqueline Lichtenberg write novels.

What Is It?

From the Sime~Gen website:
Imagine a world, our world, in the far distant future. Humanity has mutated into two different races. There are the GENS or generators of SELYN the energy of life. Their bodies produce more selyn than they require to live. Then there are the SIMES. They require SELYN to live, but their bodies don't produce it. The only way they can obtain SELYN is from a GEN, which can kill the GEN. Can humanity survive under these conditions? This is the premise behind the Sime~Gen universe, created by Jacqueline Lichtenberg. For almost 30 years these novels have captured the imaginations of men and women of all ages. They have banded together, created beautiful art, written wonderful stories and novels, published fanzines, formed mini-clubs known as Householdings, and more recently have invaded the internet, to create what we lovingly call the Virtual Tecton. [1]
Summary from Secret Pens:
Set on a post-apocalyptic Earth, they tell the story of a humanity split into two separate races: the energy-producing Gens and the tentacled, energy-feeding Simes. At first, Simes kill Gens to get their selyn or life energy. The two halves of humanity live in separate nations in a state of perpetual war. But then it is discovered that some Simes, called channels, are able to take selyn safely from a Gen and give it to another Sime. Some Gens, called Companions or Donors, can learn to give selyn safely to any Sime. Eventually there comes to be peace. Together, the eight published novels and two published short stories span several centuries from horse-and-buggy era to spaceflight. [2]
Description from another fan:
The Sim-Gen series was about a future Earth in which humans had split into two species, one of which became dependent upon the other in a pseudo-vampiric way. The stories revolved around efforts of some of the 'predators' to find ways to draw sustenance from their 'prey' without killing them in the process. The act of transfer was described in these books in a highly sensual, subjective way... long before Anne Rice made her fortune with gothic-romance-vampire stories. [3]

Its Origins

From a 2003 chat with Jacqueline Lichtenberg:
I used the same research I had done for Star Trek Lives! based on fan reader responses to my Kraith Series to construct the first novel in the Sime~Gen Universe....The core of that novel, House of Zeor, is what I called in Star Trek Lives! The Spock Effect. I sold it to 60 Spock fans on a money back guarantee and never had one returned. In other words, it works. Today, many more than 50 fans are writing Sime~Gen fanfic, posting it to the web, and having a ball. They role-play online, and do all kinds of things. So Sime~Gen does indeed capture whatever quality it was that ST had that made people want to write ST fanfic. I'm very pleased with the way that has turned out. I was as far as I know, the first writer to allow people, to encourage and train people, to write in my universe.[4]

Also see Marion Zimmer Bradley's Influence on the Sime~Gen Universe, an article by Jacqueline Lichtenberg.

The Intended Sime~Gen Audience

Jacqueline Lichtenberg commented on a male fan's letter of comment in Ambrov Zeor #7 that he was not her specific intended audience:
I am delighted that you liked "House of Zeor" so much. I normally say that it is written only for the SF of over 15 years' standing whose palate is somewhat jaded. I am always shocked when I meet a fan of the book who does not fit my intended audience (women between the ages of 18 and 25 who have been reading nothing but SF since they learned to read). But I've concluded that if one does something well, it can be appreciated by those for whom it was not intended.

The Tailored Effect Sime~Gen's and Connections to Star Trek

From Ambrov Zeor #7: "Since Jean Lorrah and Jacqueline Lichtenberg are collaborating on the same Sime novel, "First Channel," It is expected that a familiarity with both Jean's Star Trek stories... and Jacqueline's Star Trek stories, the Kraith series, will enrich the Sime fan's enjoyment of "First Channel" [a Sime~Gen pro book]."

In 1978, a fan commented on the connections between the Sime~Gen universe and Star Trek in a letter of comment printed in Ambrov Zeor #7:
I'm certainly glad I read STL, and AZ #1 before I read HoZ; otherwise I would have thought the similarities between ST and HoZ which I spotted were due to an overdose of ST zines instead of due to your intended use of the "tailored effects". For me, (I don't know how it appeared to anyone else) the similarity seemed most profound in the scene where Klyd is in his cell in extreme need. When I saw his actions at that time, I said to myself, "Hey, wait a minute: that sounds like a Vulcan in Pon Farr, maybe going into linger death." Then I realized that this was one of the "tailored effects" — the "superhuman" species which is stronger, faster, more resistant than so called "ordinary" humans, but who has a need, which, if it is not met, can lead gradually to madness or finally death.
Another fan in 1978 speculated on Sime~Gen and Star Trek, specifically Kraith:
This is an LoC of sorts on AZ 5&6 which I received yesterday; I just sort of arbitrarily decided to send it to you.

I got some more ideas on Simes, etc., and also on Vulcans — in this case, re-workings of ideas of comparisons that I have previously discussed with Jacqueline (when I first got HoZ, and read it and critiqued it for her — I found a whole bunch of direct and indirect parallels between HoZ and Kraith — there was even a whole scene sequence I think JL just rewrote for HoZ right out of Kraith.) Anyway, I thought you (and other AZ people, including other readers) might be interested in the notes I jotted to myself last night. One of the first things I did was make an equivalency listing: Vulcans = Simes; pon farr = need; (mating) Blooming = selyn (Gens). Now, I am aware that these are not exact equivalencies. The first two fit rather well (and the Vulcans are of course Kraith Vulcans — I do think that both Kraith Vulcans and Simes have many similarities, including a consciously constructed culture/ society. Other little details of similarity, things like Vulcan timesense, and Sime placesense. Body-knowledge/awareness, etc.)

The second one seems to me to be more than obvious. Both species are compelled by a basic biology they cannot deny; with the Vulcans it is pon farr, with the Simes it is selyn need. [5]


photos of Sime~Gen fans' costumes at the 13th Grand Council Darkover Meeting [6]

Recorded Material on Tape

At one point, the Sime~Gen material was being recorded. "Much of the S/G fanzine material has been taped for the blind and handicapped readers. But the project head has retired. If anyone wants to take over, contact Karen Litman." [7]


Fan Art

Some fanart has been posted here.

Marion Zimmer Bradley contributed fanart to an unknown Sime~Gen zine. [8]

Fanzines in the Universe

FanQ Awards


  • 2005 STORY – GEN-A Matter of Necessity – Author: D. DaBinett

Honorable Mentions:

  • 2005 SIME-GEN - 'ZINE – GEN - Sime-Gen Cooperative Fiction (SGCF – 2004) – Editor: Beverly Erlebacher
  • 2005 SIME-GEN - 'ZINE – SLASH - A Companion in Zeor #21 – Editor: Karen MacLeod
  • 2005 SIME-GEN - STORY – SLASH - A Companion’s Duty – Author: Lexie Pakulak

Information about the pro-books

  • First Channel
  • Channel's Destiny
  • House of Zeor
  • Ambrov Keon
  • Zelerod's Doom
  • Unto Zeor, Forever
  • Mahogany Trinrose
  • RenSime
  • The Unity Trilogy
  • Personal Recognizance ((#9, 2010, publ. with #10 in Wildside Double #14)
  • The Story Untold and Other Sime Gen Stories (#10)
  • To Kiss or to Kill (#11, 2011)
  • The Farris Channel (#12, 2011)




  1. Your Gateway to Sime~Gen© Fandom (accessed 28 Feb 2010)
  2. 2.0 2.1 What is Sime~Gen?(accessed 28 Feb 2010)
  3. [1]
  4. StarTrekFans.Net from a chat with Jacqueline Lichtenberg, 8 March 2003, accessed 9 May 2012
  5. "a basic biology they cannot deny" is also the basis for the Alpha/Beta/Omega trope
  6. SGPIC, Archived version
  8. "...her anatomical sketch of a tentacled arm appears in one of the S~G fanzines." -- Marion Zimmer Bradley's Influence on the Sime~Gen Universe