Scott Brick interviews KJA and BH

Image
    Abandon all sanity ye who enter here

Moderators: ᴶᵛᵀᴬ, Omphalos, Freakzilla

User avatar
Hunchback Jack
Posts: 1982
Joined: 30 May 2008 15:02
Location: California, USA

Scott Brick interviews KJA and BH

Postby Hunchback Jack » 17 Jun 2008 16:59

At the end of the Hunters of Dune audiobook, Scott Brick (the reader) interviews KJA and BH. Brick seems like a genuine Dune fan, and he asks some penetrating questions that elicit some candid responses from the authors. It's pretty revealing.

I won't reproduce the whole thing here, as it's very long, and there may be copyright issues. But I'll include some of the more interesting exchanges.

Edited to add: you can find the interview here.

HBJ

(Oh, and stop me if someone's already done this somewhere).
Last edited by Hunchback Jack on 17 Jun 2008 22:23, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Hunchback Jack
Posts: 1982
Joined: 30 May 2008 15:02
Location: California, USA

Postby Hunchback Jack » 17 Jun 2008 17:38

Some interesting information on the fabled Dune 7 outline.

KJA: ... and, an amazing thing happened right after Brian and I started talking about the project, because nobody knew where Frank Herbert was going with it, um, we discovered Frank's final outline for Dune 7.

SB: Hmm.

KJA: So, we did get the road map. Brian, you wanna talk a little bit more on that ...

BH: Yeah, it's just a three-page, er, maybe two-and-a-half page outline, but it's er ... it's... it's concise, we've, um ... we've ... we've added a lot, a lot to it, I mean, it was, it was more of a ... an inspiration for us in kind of a general concept, than a detailed scene-by-scene outline, so Kevin and I have, have fleshed out the characters and the scenes and, ... um, and I think, er, oh a few weeks later, I started rummaging around in my storage and I ... and I found additional general er, Dune ... Dune notes of my father's that have really helped us too. So, it was kind of amazing to have these things appear right after Kevin and I met.

[Some comments from BH about his mother looking out for them, then ... ]

SB: So, you all had started making plans and then, essentially you found, a roadmap?

[KJA and BH talk over each other, then ...]

BH: Well, I wouldn't say we found a roadmap, I'd say we found ... clues.

SB: Okay.

BH: It's been more clues than ... than precise roadmaps.

SB: I was curious, because you had written about this in The Road to Dune, about having found this. I was always curious how detailed an outline it was, and how much room it gave you for improvisation, shall we say?

[KJA takes a breath, but BH answers ahead of him]

BH: No, it wasn't that detailed, it was more general.

SB: Got it.

KJA: But it answered the questions that we needed to have answered, I mean, there's ... there's some big mysteries that's [sic] left at the end of Chapter House Dune and Frank Herbert could say more in a sentence than some people can say in chapters, so we were able to find ... what we had to do in order to write the rest of the story, and in fact it's ... it was such a huge story that was kind of sketched out in this outline, that it took us, er, either one 1500-page book to tell it, or two much smaller, 700-page books. So that's why Hunters of Dune is the first half of the grand climax.

SB: Right.


More later. It may be a while, as it takes time to type in this stuff :).

HBJ.

User avatar
orald
Posts: 3010
Joined: 28 Feb 2008 14:48
Location: Maximum Security Mental Hospital
Contact:

Postby orald » 17 Jun 2008 18:11

Hunchback Jack wrote:
Frank Herbert could say more in a sentence than some people can say in chapters

Or in this case, most of FH's sentences are longer than P&B's "chapters".

HBJ wrote:
it was such a huge story that was kind of sketched out in this outline, that it took us, er, either one 1500-page book to tell it, or two much smaller, 700-page books. So that's why Hunters of Dune is the first half of the grand climax.

Yea, and 75% is recapping. :roll:
In memory of Perach, who suffered and died needlessly.

I wish I could have been with you that one last time.

User avatar
Omphalos
Inglorious Bastard
Posts: 6623
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 11:07
Location: The Mighty Central Valley of California
Contact:

Postby Omphalos » 17 Jun 2008 18:16

More! More!

Thanks!

User avatar
Mandy
Cat Herder
Posts: 1700
Joined: 08 Feb 2008 20:18
Contact:

Postby Mandy » 17 Jun 2008 19:24

lol..I can't wait to read more of this. It makes them look like even bigger twits.

User avatar
Lisan Al-Gaib
Posts: 418
Joined: 11 Feb 2008 15:34
Location: In the Heart of My Religion.

Postby Lisan Al-Gaib » 17 Jun 2008 19:28

Oh my Good!

You find the most precious prove against them!!!!

You have to be canonize!
The singular multiplicity of this universe draws my deepest attention. It is a thing of ultimate beauty.

-- The Stolen Journals


User avatar
Hunchback Jack
Posts: 1982
Joined: 30 May 2008 15:02
Location: California, USA

Postby Hunchback Jack » 17 Jun 2008 20:18

Talking about their writing process.

[BH:]Frank Herbert was a teacher to me. Both Bill Ransom and I are the only two writers who have actually sat side-by-side with Frank Herbert as, - basically Bill and I were students - as we worked on books with him. But, Kevin and I have evolved into - in fact, we did this pretty early, we recognized what our different strengths were - our writing style, our syntax and all that, is fairly similar, which is helpful, but our strengths are different. And so for all the books except for one - and I'll just leave that one to the fans to guess - um, Kevin and I actually played to our strengths on the first draft. So I would write the Bene Gesserit chapters and Kevin would write more action- and science-oriented chapters.


BH talks a bit about the book where they "swapped" chapters. Kevin talks about how their writing skills have improved and they try to write better every book. I can include that later if you like, but it's not very specific and it's a lot of talk, so forgive me if I leave it out for now.

Gotta eat. More later. (And better stuff coming, I promise) :)

HBJ

User avatar
Hunchback Jack
Posts: 1982
Joined: 30 May 2008 15:02
Location: California, USA

Postby Hunchback Jack » 17 Jun 2008 21:26

Some comments on Omnius and Erasmus, and differences in writing styles.

SB: (paraphrasing; it's a long question) At what point did you realize that the old man and woman from CH:D were Omnius and Erasmus?

BH: Well, this is where ... Omnius and Erasmus are actually ... characters that Kevin and I created. They were not based on any notes that we found of Frank Herbert's at all. But we combined those two characters that we created, that we ... and, these are concepts, it was a story concept that we threaded in, knowing we were heading for Hunters of Dune and Sandworms. And we combined what we added ... our own concept to Frank Herbert's overview. And Frank Herbert's overview, then, is where we immersed these two characters.

KJA: Well, and Frank Herbert's ... the outline, and the .. the roadmap ... or the clues that he gave us ... told us basically the origin of the old man and the old woman, and where ... that it did tie all the way back to the Butlerian Jihad and that it did ... connect this whole vast story arc and epic history that he had come up with. Which is kind of one of the reasons why we had to do the Butlerian Jihad books before we could go all the way to Hunters and Sandworms, because we needed to lay this whole foundation. Now, that's one of the differences between our writing style and Frank Herbert's writing style is, he often left a lot of things ... unsaid, he put them kind of in the background, between the lines, and in fact, in Heretics of Dune, the planet Earth - I mean, the planet Arrakis is, is charred and basically destroyed, and all the life on it is supposedly killed. And he does that in-between chapters. He doesn't show it. And Brian and I, our writing style is kind of a more ... we want to show you things and do it onstage instead of offstage, and so, whereas Frank Herbert, if he had been around to write Dune 7, which, frankly, Brian and I would rather he had stayed around to write it so that we could read it like new fans instead of writing it. But he would have left a lot of the details in the background, and up to his readers to put together. And ... we kind of like to show everything instead. And that's why we wanted to build this whole history, always knowing where it was going.



Sorry about that; KJA went on an bit there, but I thought I should include his analysis of the difference between his writing style and Frank's.

By the way, I'm deliberately not commenting on these until I post all the quotes. But needless to say, I think they are ... interesting.

HBJ

User avatar
SandChigger
KJASF Ground Zero
Posts: 14490
Joined: 08 Feb 2008 22:29
Location: "Whatcha having, shoog? Hurry up and order now, I ain't got all day!"
Contact:

Postby SandChigger » 17 Jun 2008 21:37

I just wish they HAD SOME BALLS WITH HAIR ON THEM and would release the fucking Outline already. :evil:

Having to rely on what these two idiots think something means, or what they deign reveal, is ridiculous.
I have heard of only one mistake that doesn’t have an explanation for a careful reader...with an open mind. (And, no, I’m not going to tell you what it is!) —KJA

I don't like every writer's style; for instance, I have never been able to get through Ursula LeGuin, China Mieville, or Iain Banks, all of whom are critical darlings. —KJA

I...had written a bunch of Star Wars and X-Files books...that proved not just that I'm a hack, but that I could write in somebody else's universe... —KJA

User avatar
Hunchback Jack
Posts: 1982
Joined: 30 May 2008 15:02
Location: California, USA

Postby Hunchback Jack » 17 Jun 2008 21:39

Never gonna happen, dude. Then everyone will know that all the lip-service Kevin has been giving to "following Frank Herbert's vision" is just so much bullshit.

Oops, was that a comment? Sorry, back to transcribing ...

HBJ

User avatar
Lisan Al-Gaib
Posts: 418
Joined: 11 Feb 2008 15:34
Location: In the Heart of My Religion.

Postby Lisan Al-Gaib » 17 Jun 2008 21:42

Very much interesting!

They are giving us their asses to be kicked :twisted:

more, more!


I think two pages of Frank's outline will tell us more than 700 pages from them.
The singular multiplicity of this universe draws my deepest attention. It is a thing of ultimate beauty.

-- The Stolen Journals


User avatar
SandChigger
KJASF Ground Zero
Posts: 14490
Joined: 08 Feb 2008 22:29
Location: "Whatcha having, shoog? Hurry up and order now, I ain't got all day!"
Contact:

Postby SandChigger » 17 Jun 2008 21:52

Lisan Al-Gaib wrote:I think two pages of Frank's outline will tell us more than 700 pages from them.

You mean "three pages, er, maybe two-and-a-half pages", right? ;)
I have heard of only one mistake that doesn’t have an explanation for a careful reader...with an open mind. (And, no, I’m not going to tell you what it is!) —KJA

I don't like every writer's style; for instance, I have never been able to get through Ursula LeGuin, China Mieville, or Iain Banks, all of whom are critical darlings. —KJA

I...had written a bunch of Star Wars and X-Files books...that proved not just that I'm a hack, but that I could write in somebody else's universe... —KJA

User avatar
GamePlayer
70mm God
Posts: 2993
Joined: 09 Feb 2008 11:26
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Postby GamePlayer » 17 Jun 2008 21:57

It's sickening reading about these two yammering about their strengths in writing. The only strength found in the writing of KJA and BH is the potent stench emanating from the few decomposing remains of the English language left in their wake.

Still, I suppose at worst it's pleasantly affirming to a critic like myself. Nothing better than having those two prove my negative opinion of their work and I don't even have to lift a finger :)

User avatar
Hunchback Jack
Posts: 1982
Joined: 30 May 2008 15:02
Location: California, USA

Postby Hunchback Jack » 17 Jun 2008 22:03

Okay, last quote. There's more I can put in, but these are by far the best bits, and it's so damn long.

Anyhoo, this quote speaks for itself.

SB: When I read Chapter House 20 years ago, and especially when I read Hunters, I was reminded that your parents were a team, they were a partnership and they'd fashioned this universe together. And on the page you have an elderly couple, and they're seemingly omnipotent at times, they're watching over this universe from a remote vantage point. I couldn't help thinking of your parents doing the same thing - watching events in the Dune universe unfold.

BH: Well, I'll just add one more element to that, that they both loved to work in the garden. And I guess you could say that their stories were ... were the plants and flowers that they were nurturing, but ... I think that my Dad, when he created characters, he always took elements of various people and put them into it. But, that ... that could have been part of it, but I would say that would be a subconscious element to it. That's an interesting observation, I like that.

BH jokes with KJA about stealing the idea from SB. SB laughs.

KJA: I hadn't noticed that myself. I kind of had a chill when Scott just mentioned it, I thought, "Oh, that's so obvious, how come I didn't see that before?"


That's it guys. Enjoy.

HBJ

User avatar
Lisan Al-Gaib
Posts: 418
Joined: 11 Feb 2008 15:34
Location: In the Heart of My Religion.

Postby Lisan Al-Gaib » 17 Jun 2008 22:22

:shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock:

What Brian Herbert do! He sold his soul to the ignorant devil!

They're pure fuckers!


Jack, can I re-post that in the Dune Brazilian community?

People there would love read that.
The singular multiplicity of this universe draws my deepest attention. It is a thing of ultimate beauty.

-- The Stolen Journals


User avatar
Hunchback Jack
Posts: 1982
Joined: 30 May 2008 15:02
Location: California, USA

Postby Hunchback Jack » 17 Jun 2008 22:24

Sure, repost wherever you like. Thanks for the comments.

BTW, I've added a link to the first post in the thread.

HBJ

User avatar
Lisan Al-Gaib
Posts: 418
Joined: 11 Feb 2008 15:34
Location: In the Heart of My Religion.

Postby Lisan Al-Gaib » 17 Jun 2008 22:45

I'm still shocked about the comment of KJA. He entirely proved himself a jerk.

BTW, in the end of the interview seems that they never really knew each other. How can KJA write books inside Duniverse with the Frank's son and don't ask him about the Frank's life? How can he address himself as the biggest Dune fan and don't realize that Daniel and Marty were the representation of Frank and Beverly? How can he do that?
The singular multiplicity of this universe draws my deepest attention. It is a thing of ultimate beauty.

-- The Stolen Journals


User avatar
Serkanner
Posts: 2829
Joined: 17 Feb 2008 18:44
Location: Den Haag - The Netherlands

Postby Serkanner » 18 Jun 2008 04:37

I can hardly wait to see a comment from Byron on this interview and his defence that the HLP does a great job on preserving Frank's legacy. The bloody morons don't understand one single bit of his work ... not one single bit.
"... the mystery of life isn't a problem to solve but a reality to experience."

“There is no escape—we pay for the violence of our ancestors.”

Sandrider: "Keith went to Bobo's for a weekend of drinking, watched some DVDs,
and wrote a Dune Novel."

User avatar
SandChigger
KJASF Ground Zero
Posts: 14490
Joined: 08 Feb 2008 22:29
Location: "Whatcha having, shoog? Hurry up and order now, I ain't got all day!"
Contact:

Postby SandChigger » 18 Jun 2008 07:03

Who was it commented a while back that the HLP is its own greatest enemy?

Seriously, why did they let that interview onto the Audio book CD? Don't they THINK at all.

(Hear Kevin reading from Sadworms in his sample chapter podcast: "Think! You can think, can't you?!")

I'm struck with the same incredulity as when I looked through Brian's Timeweb and realized how bad it was and wondered why the hell the family let him publish it.

It's no wonder Kevin is riding them bareback and making them sleep on the wet spot: they're a bunch of idiots. :roll:
I have heard of only one mistake that doesn’t have an explanation for a careful reader...with an open mind. (And, no, I’m not going to tell you what it is!) —KJA

I don't like every writer's style; for instance, I have never been able to get through Ursula LeGuin, China Mieville, or Iain Banks, all of whom are critical darlings. —KJA

I...had written a bunch of Star Wars and X-Files books...that proved not just that I'm a hack, but that I could write in somebody else's universe... —KJA

HoosierDaddy

Postby HoosierDaddy » 18 Jun 2008 11:13

Wow. I never thought they would admit all of it. Losers.

User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18157
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Postby Freakzilla » 18 Jun 2008 12:02

I startied a new topic about this at DN where I posted a quote from KJA claiming the outline was "complete and full" and then what HBJ transcribed here. I asked which it was.

It was promptly deleted.

I guess they are censoring the authors' own words now.
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

User avatar
A Thing of Eternity
Posts: 6090
Joined: 08 Apr 2008 15:35
Location: Calgary Alberta

Postby A Thing of Eternity » 18 Jun 2008 12:08

I saw that thread for about 1.5 seconds...
Image

User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18157
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Postby Freakzilla » 18 Jun 2008 12:20

Someone should ask KJA this on his myspace page.
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

User avatar
Hunchback Jack
Posts: 1982
Joined: 30 May 2008 15:02
Location: California, USA

Postby Hunchback Jack » 18 Jun 2008 13:22

This may not come through when reading just the individual quotes I've posted, but throughout the interview there's this stark difference between Brian and Kevin's answers.

Brian has to tell the truth. You can tell that he wishes he could say that the outline was more extensive, that Omnius and Erasmus corresponded directly to ideas his father wrote in the outline, but he just can't quite bring himself to.

In response, Kevin is in full marketing mode (and damage control). He tries to emphasise at every opportunity - without giving specifics - that the information is there in the outline, that they are fulfilling Frank's vision for the series. He understands that he has to woo fans of the original series to convince them to buy this book, and mentioning Frank's name as often as possible is the only way to do that.

My opinion of Brian went up as a result of this interview; he seems to have genuine respect for his father, and tried to be as honest as he could about just how much of the book was their own work. My opinion of Kevin went down. He came across as a snake oil salesman.

Just my opinion,

HBJ

User avatar
SandChigger
KJASF Ground Zero
Posts: 14490
Joined: 08 Feb 2008 22:29
Location: "Whatcha having, shoog? Hurry up and order now, I ain't got all day!"
Contact:

Postby SandChigger » 18 Jun 2008 13:28

Most of the interviews come across a bit off like that, don't they?

Kevin probably slips something into Brian's cool-aid when they're together, family keeps him under house arrest otherwise?


(SpiceGrandson was logged in when I logged on, but it looks like he left without making a comment.)
I have heard of only one mistake that doesn’t have an explanation for a careful reader...with an open mind. (And, no, I’m not going to tell you what it is!) —KJA

I don't like every writer's style; for instance, I have never been able to get through Ursula LeGuin, China Mieville, or Iain Banks, all of whom are critical darlings. —KJA

I...had written a bunch of Star Wars and X-Files books...that proved not just that I'm a hack, but that I could write in somebody else's universe... —KJA


Return to “˲”