Last Wednesday I was tagged for “The Next Big Thing” by the supremely talented and gracious Folly Blaine. 10 questions. 10 answers. It’s about to get real up in here, people!
1) What is the working title of your next book?
INK CALLS TO INK
2) Where did the idea come from for the book?
Originally, this started with a discussion between friends of “What would happen if literary characters ended up dumped in modern London? How would they survive and adapt?” That turned into a short story which appeared on WilyWriters.com, featuring one of the novel’s central characters. It was the editor for Wily Writers, Angel Leigh McCoy, who suggested there was a whole novel there. I thought she was crazy. Then two weeks later I had the outline written.
3) What genre does your book fall under?
While it’s decidedly urban, I prefer the term Contemporary Fantasy, or better yet, Lit Punk.
4) What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
Mads Mikkelsen would be perfect as The Steadfast Soldier, Franklin. Of the other two key POV characters, Juliet Capulet would best be played by Saoirse Ronan from Atonement, but we’d have to get before cameras fast. And I’d love Karen Gillan to bring the same spark she brought to Doctor Who to the role of the Reader, Kate. Plus, I need Naveen Andrews to play Judas–no exceptions.
5) What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Refugees from their works of fiction living on the streets of modern London must prevent a coming holy war that threatens all of England.
6) Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
INK CALLS TO INK is currently being reviewed and considered for representation, but it is not yet locked down.
7) How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
I started the novel in March of 2009, and the first draft took me until December of 2011 to finish, but there was a significant vacation from the book right in the middle–roughly a year when I didn’t even look at it. In actual writing time, it took about 9 months to write the first draft. It’s now been through four drafts.
8) What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
INKHEART by Cornelia Funke, the FABLES comic book from DC/Vertigo written by Bill Willingham, but mostly THURSDAY NEXT by Jasper Fforde are the closest comparisons in how they involve the intersection of our world with the worlds of fiction.
9) Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Other than the fact that Angel convinced me I needed to start it, my driving force was to do justice to the stories of these favorite characters. Ultimately, INK CALLS TO INK is about redemption and free will, and I loved the idea of characters like Medea and Judas getting another chance under different circumstances. The thought that concepts such as Antagonist and Protagonist are fluid and subject to perspective and circumstance was intriguing. All the hard work was worth it seeing the conclusion to these character’s individual arcs. Plus, I’ve always thought King Arthur was a bit of a tool, so being able to use him as a key bad guy was VERY attractive to me.
10) What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest?
The appeal of seeing familiar characters through new adventures and strange circumstances, should be enough to get them started. But ultimately it’s the humor and humanity of the characters that will keep them reading almost as much as seeing where everything is going.
Next Wednesday, visit the following writers’ blogs. I’ve passed the Next Big Thing buck to: