The Remaining Drive-by: Richard Morgan

Richard K. Morgan began as a science fiction writer and is now a science fiction writer who’s able to cross over to fantasy, have a few drinks there and then go back until he’s ready for more cross-border travel. He’s so good he doesn’t even need a passport.

Not only does he have a bunch of highly successful novels under his belt (including Altered Carbon, Broken Angels, The Steel Remains), there are also the highly successful graphic novels (Black Widow: Homecoming, Black Widow: The Things They Say About Her), the writing excursions for the recently announced video-game Syndicate for EA and Starbreeze studios, and a six shot comic-book tie in for the Crysis video-game franchise.

As if that wasn’t enough to occupy one’s time, The Cold Commands is out in October and the next Ringil book, The Dark Defiles (working title), is underway. So, he’s a little busy.

He’s also a new dad to his finest work so far (co-authored, of course): Daniel Alexander Morgan Cottinelli.

He’s been an accidental English Language teacher, and considers doughnuts to be bald.

1. If I wasn’t a writer I would …  
… probably still be stuck in a real job.

2. The shift from hard SF to fantasy was easy because …
… in the end a human story is a human story, regardless of trappings and costume change/challenging because….it’s important to get costume change and trappings right (though not necessarily accurate!), or the whole thing falls down.

3. The five things I wish I’d known about writing when I first started are …
(1) That no-one makes a living from short stories anymore (2) That there is far more money in visual impact media – comics, movies, video games – than there is in prose fiction (3) That the literary world is fiercely tribal and a Know What I Like/Like What I Know mindset is prevalent everywhere within it (4) That the quality and the saleability of what you write, while not necessarily two wholly different things, certainly do not map exactly onto one another (5) That no matter how long and hard you try, nothing you write will ever be perfect.

4. You get to go wherever and whenever you like for a day – no consequences. Where and when do you go and what do you do?
I go back twenty five years and tell myself to get my arse in gear a bit sooner and a bit more definitively.  I might even let myself in on those five items above.  Then again, if there’s no consequence to this, maybe my younger self would just ignore my advice completely.  I never did take direction all that well.

5. Donuts (or indeed, doughnuts) or danishes?  
Danishes, definitely – they always look like this fantastic car crash of stuff you just know is bad for you and crave like crazy.  You just have to slow down, look (and then stop and buy and indulge).  By comparison, doughnuts just look bald.

 He lives here.




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