1) Tell us about your current or last science fiction novel. What is it about and how did you come up with the concept?
My science fiction novels focus on the plight of an escaped convict, the notorious Kayla McGann, as she tries to evade both the governing authority (the Union) and bounty hunters. It plays heavily on the light and dark sides of human nature, and gives the reader the perspective from both sides. Fast paced, multiple characters across a vast human empire, hatred, revenge, political games, power hungry maniacs, it has it all and I am really enjoying writing it. The story is told through a series of fast-paced “Episodes” – a serialization concept based on how Stephen King released Green Mile, which was a reading experience I very much enjoyed! Four episodes have so far been released, and five is due out soon. This story arc will be either 8 or 10 episodes in length, and ideas for a second “season” are already formulated.
2) How did you get started writing science fiction?
That is impossible to say really. I have written from childhood, and my first attempts at novels were Doctor Who homages when I was about 9. I love reading horror and thrillers the most, but when it comes to writing, science fiction works for me. Possibly, it is that the genre allows the writer to create “huge” stories, without the boundaries of what we know now and the societies and rules we live by in the real world.
3) What specific sub-genres within science fiction do you write in and why?
Hadrian’s Gate would best be described as a dark science fiction saga, set in a future expansionist galaxy.
4) What tropes do you think are important for that sub-genre?
That is actually something I gave a lot of thought to before commencing the series! I have a little book that notes down the main aspects of life, everyone’s life, and I took each one and considered how they might change in the future. There are many emotions humans enjoy and always have, and I wanted to make sure these were important in my plots; love, power, hate, fear. These aspects are human constants and will not change. Similarly, there are human constructs that have been around for as long as civilization, and I did not see these changing much either; war, crime, politics, race hate, celebrity, science, religion. The tropes I use flows from that thinking, so we have a government that rules with an iron fist, we have questionable science, we have battles in space, we have space criminals, we have love affairs, we have betrayals and power games on a galactic level!
5) Do you prefer to write in first or third person and past or present tense?
The first book I ever finished (a horror) was actually in the first person, and I loved writing it! This series is very much in the third person, but I do jump into the heads of the characters frequently and in doing so dabble with the first. Similarly, the narrative is past, but when telling it from a characters perspective can be told in the present.
6) What is your favorite part about being a writer?
The work being read by others, and them enjoying my stories.
7) What is the hardest part about being a writer?
Oh without doubt, editing and proof-reading! You need to do it again, and again, and again and even when you involve a proof-reader, they still miss things which can be annoying!
8) What stories or authors influence your writing?
The Hadrian’s Gate series combines influences and ideas I have had stored up for many years! I only finally managed to get the pen flowing though when I looked at it all through a different lense, which was, bizarrely, Game of Thrones! Whilst my plot, characters and settings bear absolutely no similarity to the dragon filled world of GoT, what I have taken on is the multiple storylines all proceeding at rapid pace, and a complex depth of characters. Another big influence was the “feel” of Blake’s 7, a cult British Sci-fi series from the late 1970s / early 1980s. The expansive human race, a corrupt government, and a band of unlikely comrades… Other influences are undoubtedly the numerous science fiction stories, series and films I’ve read over the years. Writing style, though, is most likely influenced by the man I’ve read the most – every book in fact – and that would be Stephen King.
9) Recommend a great science fiction book or movie that we might have missed you didn’t create?
I’m going to recommend a TV series already referenced. Blake’s 7. It’s old, its clunky, the acting is very hammy at times, but this was the late 1970s. What it had, though, was grittiness and dark themes that were pretty unique for that much gentler time – TV drama’s were not as bold or brutal as they are now. It portrayed a future with real people, people who had flaws and emotions, not just trained astronauts or space cadets. As a young child, it left me with such fond memories. As an adult, re-watched, I loved it all over again!
10) Anything else about you or your novel that you would like us to know?
It has a complex plot, and I might just carry it on until I’m too old to write! 11) What’s the best way to find you online? I’m on Twitter as
@Hadrians_Gate, Instagram as GeorgiaKnightAuthor, Facebook as Hadrian’s Gate – Georgia Knight and you can find my blog and series updates at https://hadriansgate.wordpress.com/ – basically, I’m everywhere!