Thursday, August 6, 2015

Lou Anders

Lou Anders drew on a recent visit to Norway, along with his adventures traveling across Europe in his teens and twenties, to write Frostborn and Nightborn, combining those experiences with his love of globe-trotting adventure fiction and games (both tabletop and role-playing). However, he has yet to ride a wyvern. With the addition of characters Desstra and Tanthal, Anders hopes that his second book in the Thrones and Bones series will continue to appeal to boys and girls equally. He is the recipient of a Hugo Award for editing and a Chesley Award for art direction. He has published over five hundred articles and stories on science fiction and fantasy television and literature.

Last month I asked Anders about what he was reading. His reply:
Right now I’m reading Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix with my son, the first time for both of us. I read the first two Harry Potter novels very soon after they were released, but I also began a career as a professional editor around the same time. So when book three was out, I was too busy with my own slush piles to read further. In fact, for a good portion of the next fifteen years, I never read more than the first book in any series I didn’t acquire myself. The reason was that I felt I needed to keep up with as much as I could beyond my own list. Reading six “Book Ones” from separate series would teach me more about the climate of speculative fiction than reading six books in the same series.

Then, maybe four or five years ago, my son was old enough for me to begin reading Harry Potter to him. We made it to the third book, but he started to find it a little frightening. I realized that these books were originally released one per year, for an audience that aged a year between each one. So we decided to read Harry Potter ourselves at the rate of one per year as well. But then word came of the Hobbit movies, and we paused to read The Hobbit in preparation for the films. As we were finishing, Lego announced they had secured a Lord of the Rings license, and my son declared he wanted to read that as well. The trilogy took us a solid year, after which he asked me to read The Silmarillion. I was hesitant but he was insistent, and we tackled it. We made it all the way to two chapters from the end when he said, “You know, Dad, this really is too much,” and we made the choice to go back to Harry Potter.

By this time he was several years older, so we didn’t feel the need to ration them out, and we’ve been racing through the books. We are closing in on the end of number five (my favorite so far). I have seen beyond this point in the films, and I do live on Planet Earth, so I know what’s coming. But experiencing them for myself, I’m still struck by what an amazing writer J. K. Rowling is. Had I encountered her at a younger age, she would have been a huge influence. As it is, she’s a huge inspiration. Meanwhile, I am dreading reaching page 596 of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.
Visit the official Thrones & Bones website, Lou Anders's website, Facebook page, and Twitter perch.

The Page 69 Test: Nightborn.

My Book, the Movie: Nightborn.

--Marshal Zeringue