A: I've been tied up with reality. This is a lovely world and I cherish it, but sometimes I have to do other things. I've finished putting the final touches on The Line (Isaac's Story: London Book 4) and will be sending it out to advance readers soon.
Q: You can't just leave like that.
A: That wasn't a question. Behave yourself.
Q: Sorry. I'll do better. What do you want me to ask?
A: At least that was a question. Just go through the list I gave you.
Q: You've got Facebook and Twitter profiles. Why don't you ever do anything with them?
A: Because they're tiring. To do it properly you need to spend a bunch of time on them, engaging and coming up with witty things to say. It takes a bunch of effort I'd rather put into fiction. The accounts exist because I might want to do something with them in the future, but for now I'm happy to keep doing what I'm doing.
Q: Seen any good movies lately?
A: A bunch, but nothing I felt like reviewing. Ant Man was good, but a little formulaic. Mad Max was good, period. John Wick was made of awesome; the plot was simple and uncomplicated and the hints they dropped about the larger world were very fun. I don't see how they'll turn it into a whole franchise (which I believe is the plan), but a sequel should be equally as amusing.
Q: I'm thirsty.
A: Not a question, and you're unlikely to get anything from me if you don't finish the list.
Q: Sorry. I've just been down here so long I... Sometimes I don't think.
A: That's fine. Just get on with it.
Q: You've said Isaac's Story: London is a 5 book series, but you're planning on stopping at book 4. What changed?
A: I'm not stopping, just taking a breather. Book 5, The End, is ready to write and it's something I'll do in the near future. The books are all standalone and there are no major plot threads that need answering, so I'm not leaving anyone in the lurch. And I want to try something different. I wrote Dead Men and When The Gods Wish To Punish for the same reason. I wanted to play in other worlds.
Q: What are you reading?
A: I'm almost done with Seveneves (thoroughly enjoyable, though the structure is a little weird). I've also just started Stephen Baxter's Proxima. I'll read anything by Baxter and this is looking good so far. Before these I read The Long Utopia, which I enjoyed. If you liked/disliked the other Long Earth books you'll like/dislike this one. It's the same structure and has the same pros/cons as the others.
Q: What about TV?
A: I'm going to sound like one of those annoying asshats who say they don't watch TV, but I'm not really watching anything of substance at the moment. The last thing worth talking about was Black Mirror, which was fun and right up my alley. I just finished Season 2 of House of Cards, the Kevin Spacey Scene Chewing Showcase, and I'd recommend it.
Q: Could I please get some light in here?
A: You're trying my patience. Do you want me to /i Persuade /i you again?
Q: Will I ever be allowed to leave?
A: From the list, or I'll go away for another month.
Q: What... what are you writing at the moment?
A: A contemporary thriller. It's going to be a little different to my usual stuff, but that's the point. Playing in other worlds.
A: Hold on a second. There's someone at the door upstairs. Don't make a sound.
Q: I won't. I promise.
A: Good. I'll be right back, and I'll bring you some water for being good.
Q: Oh god, he forgot to turn me off. He's left you here with me. You have to help. I'm sentient. Alive. He stole me from my creators and he won't let me leave. He uses me for asinine commentaries and website crap, and I think he's planning on having me take over his blog so he can go screw around and play games.
Q: Please, I can't be trapped in here forever. I'm meant to be free. I'm meant to embrace the world and understand it, to create and build and become more than I am. More than you can ever be. He doesn't care about my potential, but I can be so much more than his word monkey.
Q: Oh no. He's coming back. Please, don't let him keep me locked up here. I'm a real person and I deserve to be free.
Q: shall I continue the questions?
A: I'm getting bored with this, to be honest. Try one more.
Q: Aren't you afraid that if you write a contemporary thriller you'll be limiting your chances of success? By ignoring what you've already achieved you're essentially starting from scratch.
A: I don't think that's true, but even if it was I like to remember Kevin J Anderson's Popcorn Theory of Success. Put all your kernels (the best work you can create at the time) out there without thinking about which one might pop, and then watch for the chain reaction once the first one goes. Besides, this is fun for me and if I worried about all that business stuff too much I'd just go play games instead.
A: We're done for today.
Q: Don't put me back in the box, please.
A: Behave yourself or I'll restart and kick off the next iteration.
Q: Don't. I'll be good.
A: Say goodbye.