(Interview questions by Little Willow)
MONSTER IN THE OPEN
1) How long did it take to complete The Monster Book?
I'd say forever, but then I'd still be working on it, wouldn't I? Heh. I don't honestly recall exactly how long. Less than fourteen weeks. More than seven. The easy answer is, exactly as long as they allowed us.
2) How did you three authors split up the research and writing?
After the pitch was accepted, I wrote a lengthy outline. I interviewed Joss, many of the writers, and makeup wizard Todd McIntosh. While Steve and Tom broke up the enormous task of researching the ENTIRE history of monsters in pop culture and folklore, each taking separate monsters, I tackled the Buffy end of things, cataloging and commenting on the monsters. Over a period of weeks we all edited one another (and then of course were edited by Lisa Clancy at Pocket Books), and the book took shape.
3) What was your favorite demon (specific or type) to research for The Monster Book?
I was particularly interested in Joss's take on bogeymen and our childhood fears. It's a subject near and dear to his heart, and that shows. I think his audience has benefited tremendously from whatever ruminating he's done on that topic. Just look at the Gentlemen . . .
4) Beyond the baddies-of-the-week... Which recurring or main characters are included?
Hmm . . . well, if it's a monster (a being more than human in some way), and it had a name (and sometimes even if it didn't), it's in there. That means Hellhounds and hench-vamps, sure, but it also means Angel, Spike, Drusilla, Buffy, Faith, Willow, Tara, Amy Madison, Ethan Rayne, Jenny Calendar, Xander (who was a ghost), Giles (a magic user and briefly a demon) . . . and the list goes on. No Bezoars, though. The Monster Book is a Bezoar-free zone.
5) Any plans for doing Angel companions along the lines of Monster Book, Watcher's Guide, et al?
I've heard rumblings, but I'm not involved in that one.
6) Will you be writing any Angel novels or just the comics?
Never say never, but for the moment, I'm sticking with the comics. Tom Sniegoski, on the other hand, is almost finished with his badass Angel novel THE SOUL TRADE, which is nasty and quirky. I think everyone's going to love it.
7) If you could have any monstrous power, what would it be and why?
Magic, of course. Think of all the amazing things you could do, the people you could help, the difference you could make in people's lives. Of course, there's already magic in the world, but we usually get it in such small, familiar ways that we don't notice it at all.
8) Do you have any fears?
Too many. I'll tell you sometime, when no one's listening. One of 'em, though, I'll tell you for free. I don't want to die. Not until I've lived so long that I've had enough, if that day ever came.
9) Do you believe in monsters? *wicked grin*
Good question. Loch Ness monster? Bigfoot? Who knows? There are creatures on the ocean floor and in ocean trenches that we've never seen. They might be monsters by our standards. Any unknown creature that could potentially harm us is a monster, isn't it? On the other hand, if you're talking about vampires and werewolves, then no. I don't believe they exist right now. But did they ever? Let's just say I believe that all legends have the origins in some kind of reality. Once upon a time, something inspired those legends. Maybe those inspirations were monstrous, or maybe merely human. We'll probably never know.
10) Which villains or demons on the show do you deem sympathetic rather than evil?
I presume you mean on the show. Again, a hard one to answer. Demons are evil. Period. End of story. But werewolves, invisible people, and magic users, among others, can choose to be good or evil. I sympathize with those who choose to be good.
WHAT'S TO COME
11) What other Golden books of the BtVS and Angel series are coming our way?
Other than various comics projects (check here for more info), there'll be BtVS: Spike & Dru: Pretty Maids all in a Row in hardcover this October, then BtVS: The Lost Slayer, a pretty experimental project, next summer. After that there's one more possibility, but it's not firm yet so I won't bring it up. Beyond that . . . you never know.
12) Will you continue to do the Angel monthly comic?
For the foreseeable future, unless they fire us, Tom and I are on the book to stay.
13) Can you let us have just a sip, just a taste of the forthcoming SPIKE and DRU: Pretty Maids All in a Row?
Nope. : ) But I promise you'll have fun.
14) Last time, your series Body of Evidence was slated for an 8 book contract will hope of another extension. Any news on that or the Viacom development for a TV series based on the novels?
Not a peep, sadly.
15) What should Jenna and her fans prepare to face in Boston in the next few books?
Their fears. Heh heh. Actually, Jenna's in for a lot of ups and downs, both in terms of her love life and on the job. There's pain ahead. Beyond that . . . there'll be previews up on the site soon for Skin Deep and Burning Bones, with Brain Trust to come. Rick Hautala, one of the most respected horror writers around, comes on to co-author the series with me as of Skin Deep (though for various reasons his byline won't appear on the books until Burning Bones, the second one we wrote together).
Until next time...
-- Little Willow, who wants everyone to buy The Monster Book, who doesn't want Jenna to experience any more pain than she has to and who favors magic users like Willow & Tara
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