Thursday, May 20, 2010

Interview with author David J. Williams

Today I have the honor of welcoming science fiction author, David J. Williams!

His new book, The Machinery of Light, comes out on May 25, 2010:

With The Machinery of Light, David J. Williams completes his furiously paced, stunningly imagined trilogy—a work of vision, beauty, and pulse-pounding futuristic action.
September 26, 2110. 10:22 GMT. Following the assassination of the American president, the generals who have seized power initiate World War Three, launching a surprise attack against the Eurasian Coalition’s forces throughout the Earth-Moon system. Across the orbits, tens of thousands of particle beams and lasers blast away at one another. The goal: crush the other side’s weaponry, paving the way for nuclear bombardment of the cities.
As inferno becomes Armageddon, the rogue commando unit Autumn Rain embarks on one last run. Matthew Sinclair, an imprisoned spymaster, plots his escape. And his former protégé Claire Haskell, capable of hacking into both nets and minds, is realizing that all her powers may merely be playing into Sinclair’s plans. For even as Claire evades the soldiers of East and West amid carnage in the lunar tunnels, the surviving members of the Rain converge upon the Moon, one step ahead of the Eurasian fleets but one step behind the mastermind who created Autumn Rain—and his terrible final secret.

Tell us about the Autumn Rain Trilogy.

The Autumn Rain trilogy takes place a hundred years from now, in a world that's been locked in a Second Cold War for much of the 21st century. The United States and its eastern rival, the Eurasian Coalition, have weaponized both space and cyberspace; but as they struggle to achieve detente and put aside their differences, a new player arrives in town. Autumn Rain's spectacular destruction of the Phoenix Space Elevator establishes the Rain as bona fide superterrorists -- but who are they? What's their angle? The hunt is on to stop the Rain before they can strike again.

Among the American agents sent into the field are Claire Haskell and Jason Marlowe. She's an expert hacker; he's a specialist in physical combat -- and they're former lovers. But they soon learn that their memories of each other may be constructs implanted by their spymaster-handler ...and that the Rain are now hunting them. Things go downhill from there...

The timeline of the Autumn Rain trilogy is incredibly complex. How did you go about creating this detailed history? How long did it take?

The timeline was the first thing I ever wrote, way back in the day. I ran around showing it all my friends, thinking this was actually the first #$# page of the epic novel I was going to write. Eventually someone broke the news to me that an appendix might be a better place for it…

Among other things, this series focuses on politics and the military. Are you a fan of political thrillers?

Absolutely. LeCarre, Deighton ...all the old cold war stuff I grew up on.

Will The Machinery of Light really wrap up the story and answer all questions?

Oh yes. And it won't be a cop out either -- I will explain #$# everything. No fake set-ups for fourth books either. This is IT.

Any rumors of movie adaptations for your books?

Would it further feed the rumors if I said "no comment"?

The artists who created the cover designs and website artwork did a fantastic job! Do you feel they captured the essence of the series? Did you have any input?

Bantam has knocked all three of my covers out of the park, no question. I had input on the first cover, actually -- they came up with the guy in the power suit, only he was standing on a barren rockscape that looked like the planet Klandathu from Starship Troopers. I wasn't up for rewriting the book to feature a giant bug hunt, so I suggested a cityscape background to give it more of a near-future (rather than space opera) feel.

You travel often for appearances. What type of event appeals to you the most?

Any event where I can meet people who my characters have connected with. They lived for so long inside my head that it's great to see them get out into the world and have some fun.

What were your science fiction influences in the area of books and movies?

Fave authors: Gibson, Zelazny, Delany, Herbert, Watts, Morgan.

Fave movie: Bladerunner, inevitably.

Tell us a bit about your work on the Homeworld video games.

Ah, Homeworld... well, I went to elementary school with Rob Cunningham, who became the lead artist at Vancouver, BC-based Relic Entertainment. I was taking a break from my corporate job at the time (now long faded in the rear view mirror) and pitched him/Relic my concept of a people who realize their heritage as former rulers of the galaxy. One thing led to another, and the basic story took shape from there. Incidentally, I'd say the central impact the Homeworld experience had on me was wondering why I was stuck dealing with corporate spreadsheets while my friends were drawing spaceships for a living. That was the genesis of the novels right there...

To what do you credit your success? The Australian convict heritage or the craziness?

That, and not knowing the meaning of the word "quit."

What’s next for you?

Possibilities include: a science fiction screenplay, a medieval thriller screenplay, a dark fantasy novel, and jail.

Thank you, David, and we certainly hope it's not jail!

About David J. Williams-

Descended from Australian convicts, David J. Williams nonetheless managed to be born in Hertfordshire, England, and subsequently moved to Washington D.C. just in time for Nixon’s impeachment. Graduating from Yale with a degree in history some time later, he narrowly escaped the life of a graduate student and ended up doing time in Corporate America, which drove him so crazy he started moonlighting on video games and (as he got even crazier) novels. The Autumn Rain trilogy sold to Bantam Spectra in the summer of 2007; the release of THE MACHINERY OF LIGHT in May of 2010 completes the series.

Visit David’s blog HERE and be sure to check out The Machinery of Light Trailer



Congratulations on a most awesome interview. I have learnt quite alot from it,I think I can understand Sci Fi a bit more than I did this time yesterday.
Thanks for sharing this with us.

Thanks also for your visit and comment, may take your advice and get a new laptop. I am getting so much aggro from this one still I shall end up tearing my hair out and I won't look good bald.

Enjoy your day,

Unknown said...

Wow. This seems to be so exiting. I have always loved Sci Fi. I sure will enjoy this if its adapted into a movie...:)
Awesome interview. Have a good day, Alex!


Unknown said...

Very nice interview and I might have to check out that first book in the series.

Helen Ginger said...

Thanks David and Alex. Very interesting post. This sounds like something my son would enjoy. I'll look for the first in the series.

Straight From Hel

L. Diane Wolfe said...

David's right - meeting the readers and fans is the best part.

Great interview, guys!

DEZMOND said...

The "no comment" answer got me most intrigued :)) for obvious reasons off course :)
I hope the Eurasians win in the novel :)
We wish David a lot of success with the trilogy!

Arlee Bird said...

Sounds like quite an interesting epic series. Very fine interview.

Tossing It Out

Hannah said...

Awesome. Aren't interview fun?

I love that cover!

Great job!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Yvonne, don't go bald!

Dez, thought that would interest you!

Unknown said...

Love the interview.. I just contacted an author of a very famous blog for an interview and she said Yes.. so I will try that for the first time.. I love your Kate Beckinsale picture... Did you purchase Avatar already...??? This book looks like one I would read.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Wasabi, that's great!
And yes, I snagged Avatar on the first day - of course!

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

Great interview!

I love that the trilogy will actually wrap the plot up and not leave readers hanging. There's nothing like *thinking* you're reading the last book and not have everything tied up!

Sounds like a great series. Thanks for the tip.

Anonymous said...

Have to echo the sentiments above - great interview. This was a great read (some great questions here). Thanks so much for sharing.

Jemi Fraser said...

I agree - great interview - I learned a lot :)

Charles Gramlich said...

Good interview. I wasn't familiar with this trilogy before but I will check it out. It certainly sounds like the author did his work on this one.

India Drummond said...

Loved the interview! I'm a big fan of sci-fi, and I imagine I'll enjoy this book!

Ella said...

Great interview, Alex and David!
These look great; I hadn't heard of these! I can't wait to read them; I know what my son is getting for his birthday ;-D

Carol Kilgore said...

I rarely read science fiction, but this sounds fascinating.

Especially "...hacking into both nets and minds..."

Blows me away. How scary if someone could hack into our minds.

History of video games said...

Very nice interview and I might have to check out that first book in the series.

Elana Johnson said...

Jail! LOL! Sounds like a great finale -- and a movie??? Yes, the rumors are flying.

Lola Sharp said...

I'm with him on Blade Runner (I know you don't care for, I don't know. *sigh*).

Great interview, Alex.
I love his author bio...witty.

Happy Weekend!

bloggeratf said...

"Possibilities include: a science fiction screenplay, a medieval thriller screenplay, a dark fantasy novel, and jail."


I would love to see some dark fantasy from him. That gets my vote...

Glynis Peters said...

Great interview. Thanks for sharing both of you.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks everyone for stopping by for David's interview!

ediFanoB said...

Great and informative interview!

I finished The Burning Skies some days ago and can't wait to read the final volume The Machinery of Light.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

EdiFanoB, I'm looking forward to my copy as well.