All the Midkemia stories are part of a ‘history of an imaginary place,’ so I’ve always known the cycle covered five rift wars. I just got to the end after 30 books. So there was no particular inspiration, save it was time to finish the whole shebang.
Also, it’s risky to try to duplicate earlier success. Magician had a certain charm to it, mostly due to my choice of lead characters, that I would be hard put to duplicate.
Any good story can galvanize a person, make him/her think about things a different way, reassess their own motives and needs, but that’s never my intent. That’s an unintended consequence of me just trying to entertain, to write what we used to call ‘ripping yarns.’
As a kid, I sat transfixed watching Ray Harryhausen’s ‘7th Voyage of Sinbad.’
Either systems are in balance or they are falling apart. If people are acting in what appears to be a twisted way, I want to know the reason for that.
I don’t like fantasy where a king snaps his fingers and suddenly a whole army appears and goes off to war – he’s got to feed them, he’s got to pay them, he’s got to take care of the camp followers and the gamblers and the people who cause disorder.
I feel when a writer treats a character as ‘precious,’ the writer runs the risk of turning them into a comic book character. There’s nothing wrong with comic book characters in comic books, but I don’t write comic books.
I keep threatening to write a non-fantasy book, and they keep offering me the kind of money I can’t refuse to write a fantasy. That’s a good thing. I have to pay my mortgage, and I have to pay for my Chargers season tickets.
I won’t say that writing is therapy, but for me, the act of writing is therapy. The ability to be productive is good for my mental health. It’s always better for me to be writing than vegetating on some couch.
I’m a huge fan of Cabernet and Bordeaux, and am passionate about Pinot Noir and Burgundies.
I’ve never worried about ‘the reader’ because there isn’t one. There are thousands, and they all have strong opinions, from ‘Magician’ was the best ever,’ and I’ve gone downhill since to ‘The new book is the best ever,’ so to whom to I listen? So I write for myself and hope other people like it.
If I leave my computer, I’m probably not going to get back for hours. If I take a few minutes to answer questions and go web surfing, then guilt kicks in and I get back to work.
In the end, my reasons for moving down the timeline and introducing a new cast have more to do with keeping myself entertained, on the assumption that if I get bored, my readers are going to be even more bored.
Jigsaw Lady is the working title of a science fiction novel I’ve had in my head for darn near 15 years. I think I’ll start work on it next year (in all my spare time) but I’d like to get it finished some day.
Mostly I’m writing about people, so I feel constrained to take with me my view of people, my curiosity about how people choose the things they do and why they come to certain decisions in a certain fashion and all the things that drive most writers.
Neal had a couple of good ideas and they fit nicely, so that’s the way I decided to go.
Often I’ll try things that just won’t happen the way I’d like them to, so hearing that they’re not working saves me some wear and tear the next time around.
One likes to think one grows as a writer as one ages, else all you get is an ‘old’ young writer. Beyond that is the changing landscape of the universe and the stories I choose to tell.
One likes to think one grows as a writer as one ages, else all you get is an “old” young writer. Beyond that is the changing landscape of the universe and the stories I choose to tell.
One of the key issues will be personal honour vs. the good of the many, and unforeseen consequences.
People like rules, or at least the appearance of rules, even in fantasy.
Science fiction is fantasy about issues of science. Science fiction is a subset of fantasy. Fantasy predated it by several millennia. The ’30s to the ’50s were the golden age of science fiction – this was because, to a large degree, it was at this point that technology and science had exposed its potential without revealing the limitations.
The issue of the Betrayal was so central to that, I felt the need to comment upon it. My choices were to ignore the games and put them ‘outside’ of continuity or to integrate them. I chose the latter.
The issue of the Betrayal was so central to that, I felt the need to comment upon it. My choices were to ignore the games and put them “outside” of continuity or to integrate them. I chose the latter.
There were two things going on: 1) I had already established in my own mind where I wanted to go with the next series, and having James around as a Grey Eminence would have complicated matters. He had had an amazing life and it was time to bid him good-bye.
There’s always going to be comparisons, and that’s unavoidable. There are people out there who feel I hit my peak with Magician and have gone downhill since.
When you talk about fantasy, the usual problem is that whilst you’ve got the world of imagination, there are no controlling forces.
Writing is hard work; it’s also the best job I’ve ever had.
Writing is not a competitive sport. Everyone that writes has his or her own voice.
You can only have one first born child. You may love all your children deeply and with passion, but there is something unique about the first born.