17 Days To Halloween: From One Writer To Another
I asked my writing partner, Robin, a few questions about our new book and I thought I'd post his answers up here in the form of an interview. Here's the short conversation...
What's your favourite Bastards story from the book?
Robin S: 'Forgiveness' is my personal favourite and it's probably the most cliche story in the book, but I love it!
Robin S: I love the whole nostalgic value this story has. The kids go into the haunted house (and we've all done it), grow up, never moving on with their lives and go back in there as adult losers. Not to spoil anything, but the story displays how little these people have moved on with their lives and that still no-one believes them.
What's your favourite illustration from the book?
Robin S: Hatchet
Have you ever worked like that before, having the limitations to write something not originated by yourself?
Robin S: No and I didn't see any limitations at all because I felt I had a good connection to the stories. It might have been frustrating if it was working with a stranger, but I feel myself and the creator have a common understanding of the way we work.
How much did those restrictions affect you as a writer and your writing process?
Robin S: They didn't affect me at all. I was given a lot of freedom in terms of the writing process, there was never a real blueprint for things like story and dialogue - so I could really make them my own.
Tell me about www.Bastard, the bonus story written solely by you.
Robin S: This was the one story written, 'as we were going along'. It came about from being engrossed writing the story and so naturally I felt it had sucked me in. So, I had this nightmare one night, where I felt the skull image had burnt into my eyelids.
If you had to match up Bastards with any other creative work, from any type or genre, what would that be?
Robin S: It's funny because I enjoy short stories the most opposed to a full 500 page novel. If the stories were on TV I'd compare them to the likes of: Amazing Stories, The Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits and perhaps if they were on the big screen, perhaps 'ABC's of Death' or 'V/H/S' franchises.
How do you perceive the Bastards as characters? What are they to you?
Robin S: The bastards are a culmination of everything that's negative, vulnerable and misguided in the world. Sometimes these characters can be misunderstood, but some are a deadly reminder that evil exists in the world. The stories take you to dark places and like the real world and the news, you can choose to switch off from them or read about them.
From beer cans to comics to film... How much of a cliche is a skullheaded character?
Robin S: Skulls are paraphernalia at the moment in popular culture. You have many clothing labels and designs based around the most distinct and obvious thing in the world. To me it's surprising no-one has based a horror franchise based on this... Wait... shhhhh.
How do you like the two Bastards audiobooks so far? What do you think of this format?
Robin S: The format of an Audiobook is not something I've ever really gotten into. Now I'm totally sold by it. It brings a whole new dimension to mulit-tasking, because lets face it, not all of us have time to read in our spare time. The two audiobooks were an incredible experience. The next best thing to getting our idea on the big screen, it really felt like Rob brought the characters alive.
The Rust Coloured Soil or Bastards//Bones? You can't say both.
Robin S: B//B is probably my most accomplished book. It just felt more like a journey and a learning experience. To be honest, I feel I'm growing with every new project I do, so ultimately it feels like I'm getting better with each one.
What do you think of the possibility of a Bastards 2?
Robin S: Hey, if people enjoyed the first one...then I'm more than up for it! When went through the story outlines originally, it felt like they were never ending. So so many different characters and all uniquely different. I thought how were we every going to get through them all? we couldn't possibly put them all in one book? so yes we've left it open because there's so many more Bastards that exist in the world.
Horror or Sci-Fi?
Robin S: For me, horror has always been my first love. I can't remember when it happened, but it's always intrigued me from an early age. My parents (like most) tried to shield me, but nothing could stop me wandering into that Horror aisle in Ritz Video. It was inevitable.