Interview with Ross M Kitson

infinity

I recently reviewed Ross M Kitson’s sci fi novel, The Infinity Bridge. Interested as to what made Ross tick, writing wise, I invited him to be interviewed on my blog and thankfully he agreed.

Q. What inspired you to write The Infinity Bridge?    

A.Thanks for the inviting me to interview, Kate. The Infinity Bridge arrived from a few directions at once. Firstly. I’m a life-long Dr Who fan (Whovian seems to be the modern term) and I wanted to write a fast-paced sci-fi adventure which captured the delight I got out of Dr Who as a kid. Second, my kids were moaning that the other series I write was too ‘mature’ for them (and by that they mean slow and occasionally gorey) and wanted something aimed at them. Finally, I’ve loved the concept of parallel and alternate worlds since I was a nipper, being a big comic reader, and wanted to explore that a little in my writing.

Q. Although the book is primarily sci fi, it has elements of fantasy, such as the modern day Knights of the Round Table and their coordinator, Merlin. Are you also a fan of fantasy fiction?

A. Totally, in fact more so than sci-fi or really any other genre. When I was a wee lad I played a vast amount of role-playing games, and this fueled my literary tastes. The Merlin idea evolved from an idea I had had for a modern fantasy series wherein aliens have taken over a multi-national corporation and, at this time of great need, King Arthur is reborn in the body of a teenager. He goes about rediscovering the reincarnations of his round table, to battle the aliens. Merlin was a similar ‘virtual’ concept in that plot. Ultimately I realized it was rather too similar to the DC comic from the early eighties, Camelot 3000, and dropped the idea (but kept the Merlin!!).

 Q. Who are your favourite authors and why?

A. That’s a tough question! First of all, I love what George RR Martin has done for the fantasy genre. I took a hiatus of a fair few years from fantasy, wandering into contemporary mainly. When I decided to write my fantasy series I went about ‘catching up’ with the genre. Accordingly I read Game of Thrones, and was absolutely enthralled by it. I’ve followed the series since, and although the latest books are rather weaker than the first three, I still really enjoy his detail and style.

Also in fantasy I’ve enjoyed Scott Lynch, whose take on the genre is sort of Martin Scorsese does Middle Earth. Remarkable writer.  Other classic speculative fiction writers I have enjoyed also include Poul Anderson, Tim Powers, KW Jeter and Philip Pullman.

As I mentioned before I am a huge comics fan, and within that genre I would really rate Alan Moore (no surprises there) and Bryan Talbot. Of the former, Moore redefined what was possible both in the superhero genre, but also in graphic novels in general. He broke down the snobbery between ‘normal’ fiction and graphic novels as a literary genre.

Bryan Talbot is similarly remarkable although far less known. His art is exquisite, yet it is his stories that resonate in originality and style. From the hard-hitting alternate reality fantasy of Luther Arkwright, to the child abuse/homelessness story of One Bad Rat he goes from strength to strength. His current work is an anthropomorphic steampunk series called Grandville, which I totally recommend.

Q. Do you have any other writing projects in hand?

A. Oh, yes! I’m writing the first draft of the final book in my six part epic fantasy series, Darkness Rising. The first three are out in print and kindle, and the fourth is being edited at present. I hope that will be out this summer.

When I’ve finished Darkness Rising 6, I’ll be cracking on with the Nu-knights series. I have book 2, The Spectral Assassin, plotted out and am itching to get going on it after the great reception to book one, The Infinity Bridge.

Q. How long have you been writing?

A. I wrote a lot of material when I played the role-playing games in my teenage years. That was the core of my creativity, and undoubtedly laid the path for what I do now. I started writing a fun project for my old gamer friends with their old characters in it, and a friend suggested I tackle something original. That was when I began Darkness Rising, perhaps four years ago now.

A. Who or what inspired you to become an author?

Q. I think it is something within you that makes you decide to do it, a sort of creative need. People express this in many different ways. I have friends who enjoy playing music, and I dabbled in that for a while, but never really had the patience. For me the immediacy of the process with writing is gratifying, the realization of all the random stuff that’s bounced around my head for years.

It is also a perfect ‘therapy’ for me writing fantasy. My day-job (I am a consultant in intensive care and anesthesia) can involve quite distressing and disturbing moments and I find a little escapism into fantasy and sci-fi is a great way to relax my brain.

A.What advice would you give to new authors?

Q. LOL- I’m not sure I’m really in a position to give advice! Is it lame to say ‘do it for yourself?’ You have to be the one that gets most out of your work, that gets a thrill out of creating it that loves the whole process. Learn to self-edit, and learn to do so mercilessly. I used the Rene Brown book from the start and it helped me loads, although I’m still improving.

And I suppose that’s another bit of advice—constantly strive to improve. Take genuine advice, genuine critique, and ignore the trolls. Write more and more, and enjoy it.

Q. Do you have a website or blog where readers can view your work?

A. Like most of us indie author types, I have a few!!

For my fantasy series, Darkness Rising, I have The World of Nurolia (https://sites.google.com/site/worldofnurolia/home ). This has short stories, chapter samples, background, maps, reviews of my work and so forth.

For the Nu-knights there is the smaller site,  http://thenuknights.weebly.com This has chapter samples, and a little background, as well as some blog posts on Merlin, and steampunk.

Both Infinity Bridge and Darkness Rising are going up, bit by bit, on Wattpad. So if you are a member then you can read my work on there!!

A. What is your writing schedule? For instance, do you set aside so many hours to write, or do you work by the seat of your pants?

A. I don’t really have one if I’m honest.  My working life is rather random at times, with on-call commitments and weekend work and so forth. It soaks up a fair bit of home-time as well. So my writing comes in bursts, sometimes once a week, occasionally twice, in the evenings and wee hours of the day.  Having said that, a lot of my planning is done during idle time—in cars, on trains, munching breakfast. This gets scribbled, and often when I write, chunks have been planned and plotted and scripted. It gets a few odd stares when I’m creating dialogue in the car, but hey I can live with that.

Q. Finally, where do you see yourself – writing wise – in ten years time?

A. Hmm. I’m pretty certain I don’t have the time to dedicate to all the marketing and book pushing to be a big success. I see me building up a gradual fan-base over the next decade, enough so that folk read and enjoy my books. I hope to have nailed down Darkness Rising in the next two years, which was my original goal. Nu-knights I have five books planned, which work as stand-alone reads as well as a series. I’ve also got a steampunk series cooking in my head—I’ve just got to clarify the tone of the books. And who knows, the characters and world of Darkness Rising might tempt me back for a few more.

So much writing, and so little time!!!!

Thanks again for the interview, and good luck with your own work.

Thanks for talking to me Ross and I wish you every success in your writing career.

ross

Advertisements

2 Responses to “Interview with Ross M Kitson”

  1. Awesome interview, Kate. The maestro I see has lost none of her sparkle! Ross makes a great interviewee, I’m always drooling over his amazing covers and I have the feeling his brain should be preserved as an unlimited source of sci-fi and fantasy knowledge! His book is definitely next for my bookshelf. Well done guys. 😀

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: