David Niall Wilson & Patricia Lee Macomber
co-authored STARGATE ATLANTIS: Brimstone. Here they talk about what
they love about the show and what they hope you will love about
1) How and when did you become a fan of Stargate
SG1 and/or Stargate Atlantis?
DNW: I came late to
the game. I have led a life of travel, and a lot of shows I would
have watched slipped past me, so when SG-1 got popular, I didn't
really see much of it. I became a fan of Stargate Atlantis very
quickly after watching it a few years ago. We got all the seasons
through Netflix at that point and caught up. I am also a fan of
the new show, Stargate Universe.
PLM: I watched the
original "Stargate" movie way back when it was first released.
David and I are both avid science fiction fans, so we spent one
summer catching up on the seasons we had missed and our love affair
with Stargate continued into the current season of Stargate Universe.
2) Whats your all time favourite Stargate
SG-1 and/or Stargate Atlantis episode and why?
DNW: Hide & Seek
is my favourite. I cannot get the opening scene out of my mind,
Sheppard tossing Rodney off the balcony, Dr. Weir asking if they
thought a good first test was being tossed off a balcony, and Rodney
saying, "Oh, no, he shot me!" Rodney is definitely my
PLM: I part ways with
David on favorite characters. I adore Ronon and Teyla. I have to
agree with the episode Hide & Seek, though. Rodney's exuberance
over the new-found force field was priceless.
3) What made you want to write a Stargate novel?
DNW: Much like when
I wrote my Star Trek Voyager novel, it was the chemistry of the
characters. When I get to the point that I can hear them all talking
in my head, I know I can write something that fits. The characters,
even through different seasons and different interactions, all held
together wonderfully for me in Atlantis, so I felt comfortable there.
I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to become part of the
PLM: Again, I live
for Ronon and Teyla. Their interplay is amazing and the tension
between Teyla and Sheppard and Teyla and Ronon is wonderful to work
with. I've been writing science fiction since I was 15, so moving
into the Stargate multi-verse seemed a natural.
4) Whats the hardest thing about writing
in the Stargate universe? And whats the best thing about writing
in the Stargate universe?
DNW: For me, it's remembering
all the permutations of technology. Being a fan of many different
SF shows, and watching them constantly, I have to shut off most
of my brain and focus to keep things working the way they should..
The best part is getting to bring the characters to life
and the best part yet to happen? Hearing from the fans. Really hoping
they're going to like what we had to offer. Actually, the BEST part
of this particular book was having the chance to write with Trish
again. She and I have been collaborating for a long time, words,
life, and love; our finest collaborative work is named Katie...
PLM: Getting the technology
right is important, yes. Sometimes, that part can be tricky. But
I believe that all fiction is character-driven. If you have great
characters and spend any length of time with them, they will tell
you what the story should be. Stargate has great characters, fully
fleshed-out and multi-layered. I hope I hit the nail on the head.
At least I had a great collaborator to help.
5) Tell me about your favourite scene in your
DNW: I have decided
NOT to tell you about my absolute favourite, because it would give
away things that are too important. I'm going to go with the dream
Rodney is having at the beginning of the book, where he's about
to be recognized for his genius, and Dr. Weird is presenting the
award, dressed provocatively. I think the conversation he has with
Ensign Cumby immediately after that is hysterical. Of course, I
PLM: If I told you
my favorite scene, I would ruin its impact. So, just a hint: It's
toward the end and involves Rodney. My favorite scenes usually involve
Teyla or Ronon, but this time, Rodney steals the show, I think.
6) What do you hope readers enjoy most about
DNW: The way we handled
the characters, particularly Rodney and Sheppard. I think we have
some great twists in our plot, and even a small message to the work
as a whole. I am hoping that the ending has the effect on readers
that we hope it will.
PLM: I hope they enjoy
the way we sort of unleashed Rodney. And I hope they can find a
bit of themselves in these wonderful characters.
7) How did you become a professional writer?
And do you have any tips for budding authors?
DNW: For me, it was
a long process. When I decided to write professionally, after years
of saying I was "a writer," I took a course from Writer's
Digest Books called "Writing to Sell Fiction." My instructor
was J. N. Williamson. He taught me a lot, but more importantly,
he got me "connected" to the small press, fanzines, and
writing organizations. I started having more success after publishing
my own magazine for a while and practicing editing other people's
work. My first published novel was the Star Trek Voyager Novel :"Chrysalis".
I would say the most important thing for writers today to do is
to not get caught up in all the magic get-published-quick schemes
out there. Take your time, learn the craft, work toward being published
and accept the stones and arrows of editors along the way. Unless
you are a prodigy, you aren't as good as you think you are; none
of us are.
PLM: I set out to become
a famous writer when I was 15. Of course, I thought it would be
so simple then. Turns out it wasn't. I wrote for pennies a lot,
or even for free. I wrote a lot of stuff for hire and some stuff
that I still look back on, convinced that it was awful. I still
think some of my best stuff is up in the attic in a file cabinet,
never to be seen by anyone. I would advise any budding writer that
they should study great writers to a certain degree, but study people
even more. If you know what makes people tick, you can write great
characters. In this business, it's really not about WHAT you know,
but WHO you know.
8) Whats your opinion of fanfiction? And
have you ever read or written any?
DNW: I took a different
road, so I have not really written much fanfiction. I have good
friends, like Kay Reynolds, who made a real name for themselves
in that world. If the work is well-written and not too far off into
the erotic side of things, I enjoy reading it, but for the most
part, with my own publishing company and deadlines looming on all
sides, I seldom get the opportunity. I think it's a great place
to hone your craft if you are interested in writing "tie-in"
work, as well.
PLM: I adore fan fiction.
I cut my writing teeth on Star Trek fan fiction, back in the days
when people like Sondra Marshak were unknowns. We were all devoted,
working for copies, weaving together stories that touched us. I
went on to write X-files fan fiction, though by that time the internet
was the venue of choice. But when you write a story and someone
takes the time to send you a hand-written fan letter...that truly
means something. Fan fiction will always be near and dear to my
heart and I don't think I'll ever stop writing it entirely. It's
just that now, I get paid for it once in awhile.
David Niall Wilson has been writing and publishing horror, dark
fantasy, and science fiction since the mid-eighties. His novels
include, Vintage Soul, The Mote in Andreas Eye, Deep Blue,
the Grails Covenant Trilogy, Star Trek Voyager: Chrysalis, Except
You Go Through Shadow, This is My Blood, and the Dark Ages Vampire
clan novel Lasombra, On the Third Day, The Orffyreus Wheel, and
the upcoming novel Maelstrom.
He has over 150 short stories published in five collections,
one of which, Defining Moments, was nominated for the Bram Stoker
Award in 2007. He has won the Bram Stoker Award for his poetry,
and his short fiction. He wrote the screenplay for the movie GODHEAD,
released in 2007 from Blurgirl Productions ( http://www.godheadthemovie.com
), and his Dark Noir Comedy KILLER GREEN has been optioned by Ambergris
David lives and loves with Patricia Lee Macomber in
the historic William R. White House in Hertford, NC with their children,
Billy, Zach, Zane, and Katie, occasionally his college genius daughter
Stephanie, two Pekingese, and a chinchilla named Pook Daddy.
Patricia Lee Macomber has been writing since she was 15. Her first
novel was contracted that same year but never published. She spent
several years writing Star Trek fan fiction and finally finding
publication in "Best of Trek #13."
Years later, she turned to writing horror and found
a home as editor-in-chief of Chiaroscuro magazine. Her stories can
be found in "Shadows Over Baker Street," "Shivers
2," and the "Dark Side" anthologies.