EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: New Book Deal for Adam Christopher

Angry Robot announce the news that Empire State author Adam Christopher has just signed a new 2 book deal. We thought it was only right to speak the man himself on what this means.

Below are the details of the new deal and then read on for our exclusive interview with the author of Empire State.

Following the hugely successful launch of his debut novel Empire State earlier this year, Angry Robot has signed Adam Christopher for another two titles.

Christopher revisits the world of the Empire State in a sequel, The Age Atomic, to be published in May 2013, with Hang Wire – a tale of ancient gods and serial killers – to follow within a year.

The deal included world English rights in physical and electronic formats and was negotiated by Angry Robot editor Lee Harris and Christopher’s agent Stacia Decker of the Donald Maass Agency.

New Zealand­born Christopher, who now lives in the UK, said: “I’m delighted to be back for another visit to the Empire State! Rad Bradley is a character close to my heart, and as soon as he reappeared on the page and started throwing punches, I felt like an old friend had returned… albeit one I’m obliged to put through the wringer again! Angry Robot continue to impress with a kick­ass roster of authors and titles, and I’m thrilled that The Age Atomic and Hang Wire will be part of it.”

Editor Lee Harris said: “I couldn’t be happier to have more of Adam’s books on our list. Adam joins a very exclusive club – he is now one of only three authors to have placed four books with Angry Robot. We’re thinking of getting them membership cards.”

Empire State was launched in January to widespread acclaim. Adam’s second novel – Seven Wonders – will be published worldwide in September 2012.

Visit Adam online at http://www.adamchristopher.co.uk, or check out his Twitter feed at http://www.twitter.com/ghostfinder.


Here is our exclusive interview with Adam Christopher who now joins the Angry Robot 4 book club as you can see by his fancy Avengers type membership card.


Geek Syndicate: What can you tell us about the deal and the books you intend to write?

Adam Christopher: The new deal is for two books, following Empire State (which came out in January), and Seven Wonders (which is due out in September).

The first book is a sequel to Empire State called The Age Atomic. We’re eighteen months on from the events of the first book, and the Empire State is in a bad way – the Fissure connected the Pocket universe to New York has vanished, and the city is starting to freeze. With Captain Carson walking out across the ice and vanishing into the fog, Rad is hoping that his friends in New York are working on a solution. In the meantime he stumbles across something big going down with a wacko called The King of 125th Street, who claims to be hosting a very interesting guest at his fortress in Harlem.

Meanwhile, in New York, a secret organization called Atoms For Peace is working on something in their underground bunker, something which Nimrod – displaced from his own department as Atoms For Peace begin to take over – discovers, but he goes missing before he can warn anyone. As it happens, Atoms For Peace are planning for war, and once again it’s up to Rad to save his home dimension.

In Hang Wire, we’re over in modern-day San Francisco, which is being terrorized by a serial killer dubbed the Hang Wire Killer, due to his trademark of stringing his victims up with steel cable. There’s also something asleep beneath the city, something which has awoken before, causing destruction on each occasion, and which is now beginning to stir again thanks to a secret power being released in the city above. And the circus is in town, but things are getting out of control as the pagan dance group seems to be worshipping a very real god and the manager of the funfair has started talking to his machines.

It’s an urban fantasy with gods and magic, and revolves a guy called Ted who gets caught up in it all.


GS: Knowing you have this commitment now how has it changed your writing schedule?

AC: It’s certainly changed things. The Age Atomic is a fresh write-from-scratch project – actually it’s the first time I’ve been contracted for a book that wasn’t done in some form, so there is a little bit of pressure there.

But writing is a job, and as with any job you’ve got deadlines and responsibilities and also a whole stack of other stuff that needs doing – admin, and marketing, etc. And then there’s the half-dozen other projects I’m working on at the same time!

So yeah, it’s going to be a busy year. But I’m lucky in that I love working to deadlines and oddly I quite enjoy pressure, and I’ve got the flexibility in my schedule to fit everything in. It takes a little organization and time management, but then so does any job.


GS: Will these books be stand alone or connected somehow and if so how?

AC: Although The Age Atomic is a sequel to Empire State, I’m hoping it’s a book that people who haven’t necessarily read the first one can still pick up and enjoy. Sure, you’ll get more out of it if you read Empire State first, but it’s not like they are a directly connected series telling one main story.

Hang Wire is totally standalone. I am actually a fan of standalone novels, and in fact I like standalone novels that have little nods to other works by the same author – Stephen King is well known for that, as an example. So perhaps eagle-eye readers will be able to see little connections here and there between my books.


GS: Angry Robot seems to be a publisher that is trying to push the envelope with its books, does this add pressure to come up with a unique idea that we are used to seeing at AR?

AC: The simple answer is: yes! It was interesting pitching the new ideas, because I’d kinda set the bar for myself with Empire State in terms of, well, weirdness or “Angry Robotness”, I guess! You’re right in that they are an imprint who aren’t afraid to play with genre definitions and concepts.

The sequel to Empire State was actually the easy bit – I had the world, I had the new story. For the mystery fourth book, it was a case of coming up with something original and maybe a little left-field – something that was like Empire State, but wasn’t Empire State! So while I have a stack of ideas and plots, a lot of them weren’t really suitable, as I needed something that wasn’t just a science fiction novel, or fantasy novel, or a horror novel. That’s not to say there is anything wrong with that kind of thing, and I fully intend to return to those ideas at some point. But this one needed to have that “Angry Robot Factor”.

So I culled my list of proposal ideas down to about a dozen – which is still a heck of lot, when you consider each one represents an entire 100,000-word novel – and my agent and I pored over them, trying to find the right one.

As it happened, Hang Wire was the one proposal that was actually written, in first draft form anyway – when I write, I get the first draft done, then shelve it for a few months while I get straight into the next book. So it was about time for Hang Wire to be pulled out of the archive for the rewrite, my agent liked it, and it seemed like the perfect idea for that fourth Angry Robot book. Angry Robot thought so too!


GS: When will the books be published and how far are you into them?

AC: The Age Atomic is due out in May 2013, and Hang Wire a year later. While I’m sort of ahead with Hang Wire, with that first draft done, The Age Atomic is a brand new project.


GS: Now that Empire State has been out for a while how does it feel?

AC: I still have that weird/cool feeling to think that my book is out there and people are reading it all over the world, and I still get a buzz when people send me photos of it on the shelf in the US, or Australia, or Finland, or New Zealand. After all the build-up towards the launch, and then you get those initial big reviews and interviews, it does quieten down, which in a way is anti-climactic, but in another it’s very necessary as I’ve got to slowly shift my focus onto the next book, Seven Wonders. And then it all starts again!


GS: What has been the best experience with the launch of Empire State?

AC: The two actual launches we held were brilliant – we had a huge turnout at the Forbidden Planet Megastore in London, which was a dream come true. That store is an SF mecca, so to have my own event was amazing. Then we headed to New York were I gave a reading at the New York Public Library, which is a night I’ll always remember! After that we had a week of trekking around bookstores, signing stock. It was amazing, as every single bookseller we met was delighted to have an author come in, especially one who wasn’t local. And Manhattan has some terrific bookstores. I must admit I came back with quite a few goodies!


GS: So does all this mean that you will be looking at a third book in the Empire State universe or should I say universes and what would you like to explore next.

AC: I have no plans at the moment, but I wouldn’t rule it out – after two books starring Rad, it might be nice to feature some other characters and to explore some other time periods and settings. That’s the thing with the world of Empire State – there is plenty of scope to tell completely different kinds of stories within the same universe. The best things come in threes, after all! But whatever happens, it’ll be a long way off yet!


We wish Adam the best of luck and look forward to his next novel out in September.

Source: Angry Robot
GS Reporter: Montoya

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