Jennifer Fallon is the author of the Tide Lords series, the Second Sons trilogy and the Hythrun Chronicles, as well as writing tie-ins for Stargate and Zorro and has created a superhero for the Chick in Capes Anthology. She also has short stories coming out this year in Baggage and Jack Dann’s Legends of Australian Fantasy.
Jennifer has just moved from Central Australia to New Zealand where she plans to run writer’s workshops (as soon as her furniture arrives).
1. You’ve had a big upheaval recently! What inspired you to move from the Northern Territory to New Zealand and set up the Reynox International Writer’s Retreat? What are you hoping this first year will bring you?
The idea for the writers’ centre has been a dream of mine for many years. I am also fortunate enough that, thanks to writing, I have the resources to pretty much live and work wherever I want. I fell in love with New Zealand when I was over here for the world premiere of the 3rd Lord of the Rings movie in 2003. I made an offer back then, actually, on one of the properties they used in the film but the accountant who owned the place didn’t want to sell.
Ever since then I’ve had my eye on the place. I did some research about the best location to be (you know… no volcanoes or tectonic plate fault lines… that sort of thing) and came up with the Canterbury region in the South Island. It was then just a matter of waiting until the right property came up.
2. The first decade of this century saw you publish 14 novels, which is an extraordinary achievement. What have you learned about writing and the writing life in that time? Would you do any of it differently?
I read an interview once with Alex Hailey, the author of Roots where he was asked a very similar question. His answer was “type faster”.
My answer would have to be… not much. Everything I have done, or has happened to me this past decade, has influenced who I am and what I write. Changing anything would have altered this, and given I’m pretty happy with where I am and what I’m writing, I would be a fool to wish for it to be different.
I have learned that I must have an ending before I begin committing a story to paper. And I would perhaps, given the last ten years to live over, be a little more circumspect on my blog, and try not piss off a powerful and influential international editor whose wrath seems somewhat… disproportionate… to my crime… but hey… I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t put my foot in occasionally.
3. Your next series, the Rift Runners, won’t be published until 2012-14. Is this long delay so you can write the whole series before it begins publication? What stage are you at with the books, and what can you tell us about them?
I’m not sure where you’re getting those dates. My understanding is that book 1, The Undivided, is due out in March 2011. I have to deliver the first book in a couple of months. The delay is so I could have the time to develop the world fully, without cutting corners or having the pressure of a deadline I couldn’t meet. I knew when I signed the contracts that I would be relocating, so that was factored into the timeframe. I won’t start book 2 until book 1 is delivered and accepted.
4. Which Australian writers or work would you like to see on the Hugo shortlists this year?
All of them.
5. Are you planning to go to Aussiecon 4 in September? If so, what are you most looking forward to?
Yes, I’m planning to be there. As for what I’m looking forward to, I’d the only thing I can say for certain is catching up with the other writers I know. The rest of it I haven’t even spared a thought about. I have 4 Supanovas, two books to deliver and a writers’ retreat to organise before then, I don’t even have the furniture in my house yet.
Previously in Snapshot: Marianne De Pierres, Richard Harland, Karen Miller, Margo Lanagan, Ben Peek, Narelle Harris, Paul Collins, Damien Broderick, Shane Jiraiya Cummings, Angela Slatter, Dion Hamill, Garth Nix, Tansy Rayner Roberts, Trudi Canavan, Thoraiya Dyer, Keith Stevenson, Juliet Marillier, Gillian Polack, Jason Fischer, Alisa Krasnostein, Tehani Wessely, Amanda Rainey, Justine Larbalestier, Rowena Cory Daniells, Glenda Larke, Adrian (K.A.) Bedford, Kaaron Warren, Nicole Murphy, D.M. Cornish, Deborah Kalin, Jonathan Strahan, Alan Baxter, Gary Kemble, Lezli Robyn, Kate Eltham, Robert Hoge, Will Elliott, Trent Jamieson, Felicity Dowker, Jack Dann, Lee Battersby, Peter M Ball, Nyssa Pascoe, Lucy Sussex, Andrew McKiernan, Amanda Pillar, Deborah Biancotti, Kim Falconer, Gabrielle Wang, Kim Wilkins, Paul Haines, Karen Healey, Stephanie Campisi, Stuart Mayne, Christopher Lynch, Simon Petrie, Alison Goodman, Russell Blackford, Rhonda Roberts, Ben Payne, Christopher Green, Kylie Chan, K.J. Taylor, Robbie Matthews, Kirstyn McDermott, Russell Farr, Simon Haynes, Kate Orman, Cat Sparks, Sean Williams, Penni Russon, Robert Hood
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