Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Author Interview! Richard Ford ('Kultus')

This interview should have gone up a while ago but then Christmas went and got in the way... Thanks to Richard for being more prompt with his answers than I was at posting them! You can read my review of 'Kultus' over Here if you haven't read it already.

And now, on with the questions...

What has the reaction been like towards 'Kultus'? Anything like you were expecting?

I didn’t really know what to expect, but I did know, with this being a debut novel, that it wouldn’t be universally well received… and I was proved right! However, I’m quite pleased that people either seem to love it or hate it – ambivalence would have been the worst reaction of all.

The people who have loved it seem to do so for the right reasons, though. Kultus isn’t an in-depth character study, it’s a balls-out action-adventure set in a steampunk background and with a main protagonist who could rip your head off and crap down your neck – and most probably will. If that’s what you’re expecting before you read it, you won’t be disappointed.

Which came first, the city of Manufactory or the character of Thaddeus Blaklok?

Blaklok definitely came screaming fully formed from the depths of my imagination first. For me, novels always start with characters before anything else. For such an uncompromising character I needed somewhere for him to play that would be equally as challenging. So, like Judge Dredd has Mega City One and Batman has Gotham, Blaklok has the steam-fuelled hellhole that is the Manufactory.

Where did your inspiration for the story come from? Any influences or did this one just pop into your head?

The main seed for the story actually came while I was reading the last Harry Potter book (in fact for people with no frame of reference who’ve asked what Kultus is about I’ve said it’s kind of Harry Potter for grown ups). In the Potterverse there’s a group of wizards known as Aurors whose job it is to track down errant wizards who use the Dark Arts for ill. It’s suggested that the Aurors end up almost as twisted and violent as the evil which they’re tasked with stopping, and I thought this might make a great premise for a character. From this came Thaddeus Blaklok!

Is Thaddeus really such a bastard as you're making out?

Yes, most definitely. But perhaps he has hidden depths – you’ll just have to wait and see.

I loved the scenes with the Hellfire, did they come about after a hard night's curry eating?

Let’s face it, we’ve all had those nights – and sometimes it’s from both ends, though for me that was a rather nasty kebab meat pizza I ate, rather than a curry.

You've written a comic book introduction to Thaddeus Blaklok, will we be seeing any more of these and will they be included in future books?

Ryan E Horvath did a fantastic job of rendering Blaklok in comic strip form and I’d love for him to appear in more. In fact I’d love to explore other media for the character – I’ve often thought he’d be great in an anime movie. Let’s just wait and see.

What's in store for Thaddeus in the future? Answer in ten words or less...

Elastoplast and therapy. Well maybe not the second one.

What are you reading at the moment and why should we be reading it too?

I’m currently reading A Dance with Dragons by George Martin, which I’m sure needs no introduction, and I don’t think it needs me to tell people why they should be reading it either – pure epicosity!

And finally, someone is thinking of picking up 'Kultus' and you've got ten words (yep, that again!) to convince them to give it a go. Have at it...

It’s got the best Romantic Interlude you’ll ever read… sort of.

That was eleven words but let’s not quibble over it, eh!

Hmmm... Ok, I'll let you have that extra word now but an extra word will be taken off any answers you have to give to questions in the future ;o)

Cheers Richard!

(For more information, Richard Ford's website can be found Here)

No comments: