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Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Not so black and white

I've just done an interview for the Exeter University student newspaper, Exeposé, in which I talk about interactive fiction, games, comics and future projects.

The main focus is my recent reworking of Frankenstein as a (sort of) gamebook. That's still available in the App Store but, if iOS isn't the apple of your eye, it's not long now before we'll be releasing the epub3 and Kindle versions. These have been coded by Spirit Entertainment, the developers of the new FL apps.

Here is the moment when the monster, having spent a whole year hidden in an outhouse adjoining the home of the De Lacy family, tries out the clothing he has made himself in preparation for finally meeting them:
You hang around the border of the woods at daybreak until you see a man with a scythe walking on the far side of the field. He is a long way off. Stepping out from the trees, you raise your hand in greeting. 
And he waves back. He waves. A simple gesture that men make to each other every day. It means more to you than anything you can remember. Your heart is pounding in elation as you turn back into the enveloping comfort of the woods.
So where was I? Oh yes, the interview was conducted by Tom Bond and Emily Lunn, Exeposé's books editors, and you can read it here. Just below the interview, there's also a review of the app (or ebook as we must soon call it) which gives a thumbs up - though here's yet another reviewer with a knee-jerk dislike of Victor Frankenstein. Where are people ingesting this dogma? The story of Frankenstein and his monster is much more interesting than simple good guy/bad guy. Victor is irresponsible, yes, and that's tackled at several points in my version, particularly in the dinner conversation with Professor Waldman. But the monster does murder three innocent people in Mary Shelley's novel - and may or may not murder up to four people in my version, depending on the level of alienation you encourage. The tragedy is that Victor and the monster destroy each other, emotionally, morally and at last literally. You want a simple good versus evil story, read Dracula.

I'm yakking away on pages 23-24, but there's plenty of other good stuff in there worth a look, including an interview with Peter Molyneux about his new company 22Cans. Curious? You will be.


  1. Kickstarter will be available in the UK on halloween. You can already start setting up projects right now.

    May I hope? :)

    1. Huh? I must be missing something. I didn't even mention Kickstarter, did I?

    2. Nope, just chose the first entry of the blog :)
      Just thought I'd ask in case that you haven't noticed ;)

    3. Ah! No, I hadn't noticed... Well, Jamie and I were talking about doing a large-format, full-colour deluxe hardback collecting FL books 1-6, which would be a limited signed edition. I'm not sure we'd get enough backers, though.

  2. So no plans for a FL7 kickstarter :(

    1. Well, I think there's probably only a couple of hundred diehard FL fans out there - I mean the folks who'd be willing to stump up $30 or more each. On their own, they couldn't possibly fund the production of a new book. The only way I can see that working is if the apps can bring in a bunch of new readers. Right now, though, a Kickstarter would just fizzle and go out, I'm sorry to say.