There used to be a time, way back when, that I used to run interviews with authors. They were fun, challenging and people liked to read them. Then I stopped for some reason. Well, today, the interviews are back, but the tables are turned. I was asked by Jo Fletcher Books, a great genre imprint from the UK, to be subject to an interview. Mostly, we talk about blogging, but there is also discussion about some of the novels that really opened my eyes to the world of Fantasy literature. Since its terribly topical and popular, here’s a taste from the interview that discusses one of my favourite novels, The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien:
What are your all-time favourite reads?
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
As I grew from childhood and into adolescence, I veered away from Fantasy, magic and adventure, replacing them instead with laser guns, time portals and spacefaring. Science Fiction ruled much of my pre-adolescence. I still remember being in grade four, I was nine, and getting gruff from my teacher because I wasn’t reading the assigned novel during silent reading. It was The Cay by Theodore Taylor, appropriate for most readers my age. Instead of reading The Cay, I was reading Jurassic Park. I lost touch with Fantasy because, well . . . I was a boy and Fantasy was full of princesses, unicorns and other such girly stuff. I don’t know where I got such ideas, certainly not from my parents, but there they were.
At age eleven, however, my mom finally convinced me to give The Hobbit a shot. She was an avid reader of both Fantasy and Science Fiction, and rarely steered me wrong. I expect the only reason I gave The Hobbit a shot, however, was because of the languorous, fiery Smaug, stretched out atop his pile of gold, scrolls of gold-etched dwarfish runes capped the top and bottom of the book’s cover. It was pretty cool. I still own that copy of The Hobbit I read it, and fell in love. The rest, if you’ll pardon the expression, is history.