Wednesday, April 27, 2011

New Interview - Paul Kearney

"- Basically every single novel you have written to date has garnered critical success. What is it about your style that has somehow prevented you from gaining a wider readership? Some have mentioned the brevity of your works. Do you feel that, in an era of doorstopper SFF books, this could be a factor?

I used to think so, and I still believe that there is in fantasy an absurd attachment to the Lord of the Rings syndrome, whereby a story is not worth reading unless it’s a thousand pages long. But since writing the Macht books, I’ve come to the reluctant conclusion that my style just doesn’t click with everybody. I am a very masculine writer I guess, and I like to bring a harsh realism to my worlds which can be off-putting to those who like their battles blood-free and their unicorns freshly groomed. I read a blogger’s review of Corvus which thought it was a disgusting book because it has rape in it – but for me, that is one of the inevitable consequences of warfare in primitive societies. And not so primitive – look at Bosnia, or Libya now. These things make me angry and disgusted myself, so I choose to channel that rage and disgust in my writing. I do not put these episodes in my book for some kind of prurient thrill, and in Corvus we do not actually see any explicit scenes of rape – what we do see are the consequences. I think it’s important to have that kind of honesty in the story, and I see no reason to apologise for it. If a reader wants fluffy dragons and wand-waving adolescents, let them go elsewhere. I don’t write for children."

4 out of 5