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AFC Eoin Colfer Interview (6)

On the 17th of August 2008, AFC met up with Eoin Colfer after the last leg of his Fairies, Fiends and Flatulence tour for an exclusive one-on-one interview. ‘M’ is the interviewer, and EC is, of course, Eoin Colfer.

Please BE WARNED. This interview contains information on upcoming novels and the movie. This interview contains a basic plot for book 7 aswell as lots of other information that could be considered spoilers in the eyes of some readers.

The Interview

M: Hello again, Eoin! How did your US tour go?

EC: The US Tour went really good, we did three weeks of touring around in a big green bus.

M: I saw the pictures of that, it actually looked quite impressive!

EC: Yeah, so, we had a really nice time and the weather was great and the crowds were really good and I hadn’t done this show in the US before so I didn’t really know what to expect, but I was happy with it.

M: How’s the progress with the next ‘Artemis Fowl’ Graphic Novel going? Will it stay in sync with the original graphic novel, and is Giovanni Rigano illustrating it again?

EC: Giovanni and Andrew have been working on it so we’re in touch everyday. I’ve just had the first 60 pages and it looks fantastic, especially the arctic scenes, which look really magical. The light works really well, because you can add all sorts of light effects into it… I think it just looks really great, even better than the first one.

M: I’m really looking forward to this one, The Arctic Incident probably has to be my favourite book of the series.

EC: It’s probably mine too, you know… the good thing about that one was, when you’ve released the first one, you think the second isn’t going to be as good, so I was really determined to make it better.

M: We saw on Bloomberg that you may be writing another Artemis book sooner than you originally thought…

EC: Oh yeah, how did that look?

M: It looked really good! I’ll e-mail the video links over to you!

EC: Fantastic…

M: So yeah, we saw you might be writing another one as soon as 2010?

EC: Hmm… I don’t know, really, I’m planning to write a new Supernaturalist now. It’s the first time in a LONG while that I haven’t been writing anything. I’ve just finished a crime book.

M: Is that the adult crime novel you mentioned at our last interview?

EC: Yeah… so since then I’ve just been on the road, so it’s the first time in years since I haven’t been in the middle of a book?

M: Is it a nice feeling?

EC: Noooo! It’s like you’re waiting for a train, and you’re just like ‘Where the hell’s the train?!’ I’ve been a bit shifty and restless, so I want to get home and get into the next book.

M: You’re worried that you’ll get up to any mischief?

EC: Something like that! I’m worried that I’ll go out with some people and just never be seen again! As has happened to many writers

M: So why did you decide to leave Minerva out of this book?

EC: Well… I don’t really decide, the story just occurs to me and if the character’s not in it they’re just not in it. I want to bring Juliet back in it…

M: She hasn’t been in it for like… the past couple of books…

EC: I think I’ll bring her back as a bodyguard to the two young boys.

M: That’d be interesting to see…

EC: I mean, it’d be a good thing to see how she handles them, as they can obviously be quite a handful. So yeah, that’s a way to bring her back. But I think Minerva will be in future books… or a future book. It’s just when I think of a story that includes her.

M: How’re things actually going with the movie? We’re starting to hear rumours of a filming schedule starting as early as 2009!

EC: I was just over there in Hollywood, and when Jim Sheridan finished the treatment, erm, his daughter was commissioned to write the actual script which is now finished, and we’re just waiting now to see if that gets green lighted basically.

M: Have you seen the script?

EC: I have seen most of it…

M: And does it stick close to the original book?

EC: It sticks pretty close. Well, we’ve not really changed anything. We’ve added a new ending on after the old ending. So it’s like the original book with a new bit on the end. So, hopefully we should know in the next week or two. It’s kind of a busy period at the moment…

M: So, were there differences in your ideas for the first Artemis Fowl book and the book you actually came to write?

EC: Oh yeah, yeah, there were loads of differences. Actually, a lot was cut out of the first one. I have it somewhere, the original…

M: Are there things you look back on and would like to change?

EC: I think my editor was right… I cut a lot out… I went into the family history a bit too much and I was bogging people down with too much detail. I subsequently put in a lot of that detail in later books, rather than stuffing it all into one book. So, my editor was right! I bow down to her wisdom.

M: Fair enough! So if you could change anything in any of your previous books, big or small, would you?

EC: Oh yeah, I would change a few things. My earlier books have a lot of references to weapons which I don’t think is really necessary to kids, and I see sentences and think ‘Ooh,’ I should’ve used this word there and that word there. But they’re normally things that only I know…

M: A little while ago we heard that the BBC had brought the rights to turn Half Moon Investigations into a TV series… any word on that?

EC: I’m actually going down there tomorrow morning for a meeting with the BBC so I’ll probably know more then… but it seems to be going ahead quite quickly which is strange.

M: A bit different to the Artemis Fowl movie, isn’t it!

EC: Certainly, and that’s been just under a decade. 

M: I remember they’ve been trying to do it since 2002.

EC: 2001, actually, I sold it 2000, and now it’s 8 years on! So hopefully they’ll get there eventually… probably two years after I die! They’ll be like ‘How did he know?! He’s like Nostradamus!’

M: How’s the next Supernaturalist book going? Are you going with the plot that you gave us in our last interview?

EC: Y’know, I can’t even remember… something about Stefan in the afterlife right?

M: Yeah.

EC: I don’t know, I’ll probably add in more but that’ll definitely be an element of the plot.

M: In your show you said you were planning the next Artemis Fowl book already… any news you want to give on that?

EC: Well, the basic plan is that Opal Koboi is in prison in Atlantis and somehow Artemis ends up in there with her. I kind of want to bring Artemis back to being a villain…

M: We saw a little bit of that during The Time Paradox…

EC: Yeah, but I want him to be, for some reason that you don’t know, he has to do this really bad thing… he doesn’t want to do it but he has to.

M: When I taking submissions for questions for this interview, one of the first questions I got was ‘Can you please kill Opal off in the first sentence of the next book?’

EC: People are getting tired of her… well, there’s two Opals now…

M: Oh yeah!

EC: So one of them has to go back, so I have to finish that thread. I think that Opal has one more book in her then I can move on…

M: Ah, hinting at more than a seventh book…

EC: I really don’t know at the moment, I just don’t plan that far ahead. If people are still reading them and I still enjoy writing them then who knows? I’m definitely thinking one more, then I might take off and become… a badminton instructor. That’s my unfulfilled ambition.

M: I don’t know if you’ve seen online, but there’s actual a petition for you to write a seventh book quicker.

EC: Quicker!

(Eoin and his PA laugh)

M: I think it has something like 200 signatures already…

Eoin’s PA: What are they going to do if he doesn’t write one?

M: I think we’ll all just get together and revolt or something…

Eoin’s PA: They might just start reading Anthony Horowitz?

EC: Don’t even say it! Anthony’s books are good though…

M: Not as good as the Stormbreaker movie.

EC: It was good…

M: No, not really… well, I didn’t think so.

EC: I didn’t actually see it… but I heard it was good!

M: I wasn’t a big fan of it… anyway, enough of that! Lets get back to the interview! Are you strongly influenced by fans reactions to your books when they come out?

EC: Erm, I do, I take a measured look at them and say ‘Hmm… that’s interesting’, but if someone says ‘I don’t like this character’ I won’t really take much notice, because in any page of fan reactions they’ll contradict themselves many times. One fan will say ‘I like this character,’ when another fan won’t, and another fan will say ‘I like this part,’ when another won’t. If there was an overwhelming reaction, maybe like there was to Jar-Jar Binks in Star Wars, like it was 90 fans and they all hated it, then I’d think that it might be worth fixing…

M: It’s hard to please everyone though, to make something that everyone will love?

EC: It is hard I think, that’s why I think the good thing about the Artemis books is that they appeal to a certain type of people… like me!

M: A little while ago you mentioned an adult crime novel you were writing? How’s that going?

EC: It’s going really good actually, I’ve just finished it and handed it in, I think I was just planning it when I talked to you last.

M: Yeah, I don’t think you gave us much information on it.

EC: Well, it’s a noire comedy. I don’t know when it’s coming out, it just went in so I’d imagine it’ll be out next summer.

M: What’s it called?

EC: Plugged.

M: Plugged?

EC: Plugged. I can’t really talk about it without giving it away, it’s like a double meaning… plugged in the noire way, getting shot, but it’s also about hair plugs!

M: (Laughs)

EC: It’s difficult to write a noir book about hair plugs!

Eoin’s PA: Ear plugs did you say?

EC: No, hair plugs. You can get plugs for your hair. So it’s called ‘Plugged!’

M: Awesome. Anyway, I think that’s pretty much everything I wanted to ask!

EC: Thanks Matt!