Ya tenemos muchos héroes. ¿Qué os parece si le damos la vuelta al estereotipo y nos vamos de parranda con el malo de la peli?
En conjunción con Talismán, del blog Talismán Dreams, y gracias a su generosidad y buen humor, hoy tengo el privilegio de brindar a mis arrebatadores DOS TESOROS.
El primero es una entrevista al autor de Príncipe del Mal, novela recientemente publicada por Minotauro que ha revolucionado las estanterías de los lectores de fantasía oscura.
Me he divertido de lo lindo leyendo las respuestas. Os invito a sentaros en un lugar seguro y a leer la versión original en mi blog o la traducción en el blog de mi querida vecina Talismán.
EN PRIMICIA EN ESPAÑA
First of all, thank you so much for agreeing to this interview.
No problem, thanks for being interested! When I first got a book deal it was a great surprise to me that the trilogy sold to Germany and the Netherlands at the same time. I hadn’t realised that so many books were translated across the world. It’s very exciting to find I have a readership in Spain.
Prince of Thorns has been recently released in Spain as “Príncipe del Mal” and it is getting rave reviews so far. Are you keen on keeping up to date with reviews?
I do cut and paste quite a few of the Spanish reviews into Google Translate. It’s nice to see the book is getting a good reaction over there. Some books fare better in one country than another, but so far the reaction to Prince of Thorns has been very similar in each country. Prince Jorg appears to speak the international language!
I believe family is important to you. Your children must be happy with your literary success. How does your family deal with the whole process of creation?
The three older kids (17 to 21) seem reasonably impressed that their Dad has written something that they enjoyed reading. Strangely though, they’re less surprised by the whole thing than I was. Now if I tell them a screenwriter from Hollywood called me or I’ve just sold the rights in Greek they just go “Yeah, yeah.” and turn back to the TV.
Most of my writing gets done in the middle of the night when everyone else is asleep, so actual work doesn’t impact on my family at all.
Has your job as a research scientist influenced your writing in any way? You have crafted a dark world which might even be labelled as part dystopian. When did you have a clear idea of what you wanted to write? Before this novel, had you ever written anything remotely similar in mood or theme? I believe this is your first novel as such, did you have to rewrite a lot? Was it a difficult process? Do you think it’s common for a first novel to be this mature?
I’m often asked why I’m not writing science fiction. I guess the fact that I don’t is an indication that my day job doesn’t influence my night job. Doing mathematical research and creating adventures in fantasy worlds turn out to be very different things – at least as far as I’m concerned.
I’ve never had a clear idea of what I want to write. I don’t plan stories, just make them up as I go and surprise myself along the way. It’s more fun like that.
Before Prince of Thorns I wrote a lot of short stories and two books, the first quite bad, the second pretty good. I never sent either of them to anyone. None of that writing was similar to Prince of Thorns, though it was mostly fantasy.
I wouldn’t call any of it difficult. I enjoy writing. If I didn’t enjoy it I would never have written so much, or at all. I never thought that I would be published and it wasn’t a goal of mine. It was never a case of ‘endure the pain for the prize’ – I didn’t expect a prize and there was no pain. I wouldn’t have considered my time wasted if nobody but a small handful of friends had ever read Prince of Thorns.
And no, I didn’t rewrite at all. Even the edit at the publisher was incredibly light, so 95% of the book you’ve read is exactly (except for the translation!) what I typed first time into my computer in a great many short bursts over five or six years.
Did the main character end up as you first imagined him or has Jorg evolved as you kept writing his story?
I really didn’t have any picture of Jorg at the start. He evolved as I wrote, grown entirely from the seed that came from Anthony Burgess’ A Clockwork Orange, where the main character is a violent and amoral boy.
Love is not a main theme in the novel, but there are some sparks in the background. Do you think this possible romance will bloom in the second novel or will it be just an anecdote?
The second and third books (both written) follow Jorg through his life and he experiences many of the developments common to us all. These are of course realised in non-standard ways as this is Jorg we’re talking about. I think it’s fair to say that there are sparks of romance throughout the remainder of the story but that things will rarely go along the most common paths seen in other tales.
There has been some talk about adapting the book for the screen, are the rumours true? Can you tell us anything in advance?
There has been interest and some discussions are ongoing. It should be remembered that for each book that finds its way onto the cinema screen a very large number of books are optioned. By which I mean that a screenwriter buys the rights to the story for a limited time and creates a screenplay that they then try to sell to a film company. Even to be in the early stages of such discussions has wildly exceeded my expectations.
I imagine that due to your daughter’s circumstances you are keenly aware of the important job done by organizations that help disabled people, of which Charlton Farm Hospice is a good example. Now that you are becoming popular, do you think you could help to encourage others to collaborate as well?
My daughter’s disability is the dominant thing in my life and my family’s life. The whole business of writing and whether it succeeds or fails is rather small when set against the weekly crises we face in caring for Celyn. Prince of Thorns has done well and I’m very pleased, but I’m in no way famous. I have a total of just under 600 followers on Twitter. Pick a football player at random and they will have 60,000 – if it’s a well known football player 6,000,000. Charlton Farm like other hospices gets a lot of support from real celebrities. Noel Edmunds, a famous UK TV personality, does a lot for Charlton Farm, and before his death Dick King Smith, the author whose work was made into the film Babe (about a sheep herding pig) was a patron of the charity. If I ever became able to help I most certainly would – for now though I am (along with my daughter) a very grateful recipient of the help that the hospice provides.
Finally, now that you are in the middle of this promising trilogy, can you imagine your life without writing?
Yes. And not just because I have a good imagination. People ask sometimes if I _need_ to write. The answer is no. I need some outlet for my creativity, but I could find that in other ways and have done so in the past. But I don’t have to imagine my life without writing because who would stop me? It’s even easier to imagine my life without being a published writer. If tomorrow I found that nobody wanted to publish any more of my writing... I would still write and I would still enjoy it.
One important observation I’ve made is that luck really does play a large role in getting published. You need to write well, yes. But you also need to have your writing seen at the right time by the right person and that requires luck. I required extra luck because I really didn’t try very hard to get published and I had already stopped trying before someone got around to saying ‘yes’.
One important thing I have tried to do (and I hope succeeded in doing) is to make sure that I don’t base any of my sense of self worth on being an author. I’ve always reminded myself that the most likely path for any author’s career is back into obscurity, and I’ve always aimed not to define myself as an author or to build a sense of my identity around that.
It is entirely possible that in 3 or 5 or 10 years time I will find publishers ignoring me, my agent busy with new talent, and my new books sitting unloved on my PC.
If and when that happens I am determined that I will be the guy who is amazed that he ever had books on sale all across the world, the guy that is happy and grateful that he had the opportunity and that he has such good memories, and hardback copies on his shelf. I am determined that I won’t be the guy who is bitter that it somehow slipped away from him and the world has moved on.
Do you care to send a message to your Spanish readers?
Hmmm. Perhaps I should just say that [spoiler] a reader who makes careful study of the map may deduce that the story is set in Europe, and that in book 2 and in book 3 Jorg spends quite some time in the lands where his mother came from and where his grandfather still rules – once upon a time that place was known as Spain! [/spoiler]
Let us thank you again for your time and words. We are looking forward to reading more about our favourite dark hero ;o).
Espero que os haya gustado y entretenido. Para mí ha sido una experiencia fabulosa y, aunque Jorg me da miedo, ansío ver a dónde va a parar con sus ideas revolucionarias sobre el poder.
Y ahora, mis queridos arrebatadores... TESORO NÚMERO 2.
El esperadísimo sorteo de dos ejemplares firmados por el propio Mark Lawrence (libros en español). Mil gracias al autor y, por supuesto, a las dos princesas del mal que lo han urdido todo XD.
si aspiras al poder, estas son las reglas:
- Ser seguidor de los dos blogs conspiradores: TalismánDreams y Torre de Babel
- Comentar en la entrada de la entrevista de ambos blogs
- Ser seguidor del blog del autor
- Si haces los puntos extras, deja los datos y links en un comentario (esto sólo hace falta dejarlo en uno de los blogs)
- anunciar el sorteo en una entrada + 5 puntos
- llevar el banner a tu blog + 2 puntos
- anunciar en redes sociales (facebook, twitter...) + 1 punto cada una
Sorteo vigente desde el 18 de marzo al 31 de marzo de 2012
Ámbito nacional - España
Muchísimas gracias a todos por estar ahí. De verdad espero que la entrevista y el sorteo os hagan tanta ilusión como a nosotras y, si tenéis dudas, comentad. ¡Esto está vivo! XD
And to those who come by for the sole purpose of reading the interview, thank you and you are most welcome.