Yesterday, I shared my thoughts on this very original sci-fi audiobook. And I promised you we would come back and chat with the author behind the story and the voice that gave it life. So here they are, in our first-ever author-narrator interview, R.M. Mulder and Andrea Emmes!
Welcome! We are so thrilled the two of you have taken time to chat with us about your collaboration on this book!
Q1 – This question is for both of you. Andrea – what was your favorite part about working with Richard on this book? Likewise, Richard, what have you enjoyed most about working with Andrea?
Richard: My favorite thing about Andrea is that she is a genuinely kind-hearted person. Both Andrea and I had experienced some difficult personal hardships of a similar nature before and during the production of Conquest, which led to developing a wonderful friendship.
Andrea: Working with Richard has been a dream. With authors new to audiobooks, there is always a learning curve as the audiobook world works very differently than in publishing texts/ebooks, and Richard was so gracious and patient as we went through the process and in letting me “do my thing” as I worked hard to bring his story and characters to life! Not only did I enjoy working on his book, but I also made a really good friend in the process.
Q2 – Those are the sweetest answers! Okay, next question. Andrea – what made you want to be a narrator? Is there a moment you remember that set you on that path?
Andrea: I’ve been an actor for over 20 years and have been doing voice over for about 10 years so transitioning to audiobooks wasn’t a stretch, however, I wish I had gotten involved much, much earlier. For me, I was forced to retire from performing back in 2006 due to a severe injury and neurological pain disorder diagnosis (RSD / CRPS) and ended up going back to college because I needed to figure out what I was going to do now that I could no longer perform on stage. I got a Bachelor’s Degree in Game Art and Design and was lucky to work as a game designer for Disney Interactive for a few years but then was laid off in 2014. Had a hard time getting more work and my husband, who listens to audiobooks voraciously, said, “Why don’t you do audiobooks?” BOOM! YES! Why don’t I do audiobooks? So, I did some reasearch, got coaching, and here we are over 3 years later, best-selling audiobook narrator and loving every minute of it.
And Richard – what about writing sci-fi appeals to you? Have you always wanted to write or is this a spur of the moment thing?
Richard: I began professionally writing at age 12. It’s kind of a funny story, really. My mother had encouraged me to keep an active journal. By the age of 13 I had already filled two full journals and I was eager to continue. Since I didn’t have the funds to buy another paperback journal, I began storing my daily journaling on my computer under a password protected document labelled “The Secret Journal”. At the time I was chronicling my feelings about a girl I was crushing on. One day I made the foolish decision of letting one of my guy friends read a portion of what I had written. The next thing I know, the girl I had been crushing on approached me and said “I hear you’re writing a book about me.” She then demanded to read it. I was absolutely mortified, as you can probably imagine. Over the course of a week I did a hard-core rewrite and created a fictional story similar to the experiences I had chronicled. She was pleased. Six years later, after hundreds of rewrites, I published my first novel at the age of 18 – a sci-fi mystery titled The Secret Journal.
What about writing sci-fi appeals to me? I have always been fascinated with stories set in a not-too-distant future. Writing in these worlds helps me escape the mundane day-to-day tasks in life to an alternate reality of my own. My favorite TV series and movies have all been sci-fi: Star Wars, Star Trek, Andromeda, Stargate, and Battlestar Galactica, to name a few, are among my all-time favorites.
Q3 – I think you just named every sci-fi show I have ever loved! lol. Okay, here is your next question 🙂 If you could meet one author, who would it be?
Richard: That’s an easy one! Dan Brown. I love the way he uses Third Person Omnicient narration to help us get inside the minds of his characters. In every single one of his stories, he opens up with a mysterious murder scene – and the mystery surrounding the murder isn’t revealed until much later in the story. He is hands-down my all-time favorite author. In fact, I patterned my style of writing after his!
Andrea: J.K. Rowling. Her characters are so emotionally rich, incredible storytelling, especially in the Young Adult arena and knows how to create magical worlds. She is a master at what she does.
Q4 – Because I am obsessed with good vs. evil, who is your favorite literary villain / bad guy?
Andrea: This is a hard one, as there are so many good ones, but I love Johnny Marcone from The Dresden Files. He’s a total mobster, vicious killer, but he also has joined forces with Harry Dresden to help save Chicago from whatever new weird supernatural baddie that has come to town. He’s so complex, you love to hate him and hate to love him!
Richard: He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, aka Voldemort. I loved the way J.K. Rowling developed his character vicariously through hushed whispers and terrified rumors. Rarely did she ever get inside his head, and in the few times that she did the scene was always horrifying.
Andrea: I love him too and how he transforms from so many different forms before he can come fully back to life is terrifying ! Just the fact that he was a parasite on Professor Quirrel is creepy!! Reminds me of the Edward Mordake myth.
Q5 – That is perfect! I love J.K. Rowling’s writing style for that very reason (how she developed Voldemort). We are nearing the finish line here. Last question. If you could meet any ONE character from Conquest, who would it be and why?
Andrea: I’d love to meet Tiamat, Lily’s dragon! I’d love to fly all around the world and other universes and see events from the past and present. Plus, she’s a freakin’ DRAGON 🙂
Richard: I would like to meet John. Having lived for over 2,000 years, and considering the amazing people he’s met – I’d love to just sit down and chat with him.
Richard, Andrea – thank you both for doing this interview! I had so much fun doing this interview with both of you at the same time! You definitely made me a happy Ginger 🙂
Guess what, booknerds? We have a GIVEAWAY for you today! Richard is offering an audiobook code to ONE lucky winner (US or UK available – just make sure to tell us which one you need lol!). How to win? This one is easy – just tell us why you want to read this book! What appeals to you? Leave your answer in the comments below! This giveaway will run until FRIDAY December 22, 2017 so don’t wait!
That’s all for today!