Author Q&A

Every now and then I let some of the questions I’m asked pile up so I can answer them all at once.

Here’s the latest batch! And if you want to play along, just send me a question by replying here, sending me a message via Twitter or through Facebook! Heck, you can even ask me something via Tumblr! I do aim to please.

Let’s started:

When will we see a new Rook volume?

Volume six appeared in 2011 and since then, we’ve gotten re-releases of the earlier books and two Tales of The Rook volumes. In the past I’ve teased that Tommy Hancock was going to be writing a trilogy of Rook novels that would comprise volumes 7-9 but with his schedule, that may or may not be the case any longer. I don’t have any definitive plans to write a new Rook novel myself, either, but I can tell you that he plays a  major role in Götterdämmerung, the crossover novel that I’m currently writing. He’ll be teaming up with Gravedigger and Lazarus Gray in that one!

So don’t give up hope… I may do a new one at some point.

Which of your characters is your favorite?

I always have trouble answering this one. They’re all special to me in some way… I guess I’d lean towards Lazarus Gray as of today but Gravedigger, Fiona Chapman and The Rook will always be dear to me, as well. Hell, they all are!

I can’t answer that.


Any chance of you and George Sellas doing a comic together about one of your characters?

Maybe? We’d both be interested but it’s a matter of logistics and finances. To get something published through Image, for instance, would cost a couple of thousand per issue in addition to the creative costs. There’s always the self-publishing route via IndyPlanet or something but there’s smaller chance of something catching on there.

I’d love to see a book about the villains/the members of Assistance Unlimited/Leonid Kaslov! Could it happen?

I’m lumping all three of those together because I get asked them so frequently. All are possibilities and I’d like to see all of them happen, either spearheaded by me or someone else. I only have so many hours in the day, though! I’d also like to see a Handbook of my universe but, again, when would I do it? Anybody out there want to volunteer their services to help out? I’m game.

Who should play The Rook in a movie?

Anybody! Nah, seriously… I used to say Nathan Fillion, during his Firefly days. Now that he’s gotten older, I lean towards Matt Damon… but I could be swayed in other directions. I never play the casting game too often.

Why aren’t you writing any Shadow stuff for Dynamite?

They won’t let me? 🙂

I did send in a couple of inquiries as instructed on their website but I never got any response back from them so I assume they’re well-stocked on writers for the character. Given that they’re working with folks like Michael Uslan and Matt Wagner, they probably don’t need me.

Our image today is of the iconic Michael Caine. Enjoy!

The Rook Flies Again… In October!

The new edition of The Rook Volume One is expected to take flight in October 2012. Fans of the series have been waiting for the first five volumes to come back into print and Pro Se will start the process off next month. The other volumes will follow with a new version released every few months after. These new editions will have new covers and new interior art by George Sellas. Each book will be completely re-edited, as well.

Stay tuned!

The Rook IV (Marvel Heroic RPG Stats)

THE ROOK (Fourth Version)
Ian Morris
First Appearance: “The Black Mass” (The Rook Volume One)

Affiliations: Solo D10 Buddy D8 Team D6

Distinctions: D4 (+1PP) or D8
Hero Worship
Crime Never Sleeps — And Neither Do I!

Power Sets:
Workout Fiend
Enhanced Reflexes D8
Enhanced Stamina D8
SFX: Second Wind – Before making an action including a Workout Fiend power, player may move the STRESS TYPE die to the doom pool and step up the Workout Fiend power by +1 for this action.
Limit: Exhausted – Shutdown any Workout Fiend power to gain 1 PP. Recover power by activating an opportunity or during a Transition Scene.

Weapons Against Evil
Knife of the Elohim – Weapon D6
SFX: Powered by the Lord. Replace D6 with D10 damage when using the Knife of Elohim against enemies who are supernaturally evil.
Limit: Hard to Hide. The Knife of Elohim glows with golden light when in the presence of evil.
Limit: Gear

Heart of the Demon (Ring)
Weapon D6 (brands The Rook’s symbol onto the flesh of his enemies)
Limit: Gear

The Looking Glass
Precognition D10
Limit: Uncontrollable – Change into a complication and gain 1 PP. Activate an opportunity or remove the complication to recover the power.

Acrobatic Expert D8 or 2D6
Combat Expert D8 or 2D6
Covert Expert D8 or 2D6
Crime Master D10 or 2D8 or 3D6
Menace Expert D8 or 2D6
Mystic Expert D8 or 2D6

Background Info:

In one possible future, the Earth is plunged into an age of magic and chaos in the year 2006. In this reality, documentary filmmaker Ian Morris grew to fame reporting on the heroes of the past, especially the masked vigilante known as The Rook. Plagued by a medical condition that limits his ability to sleep, Ian spent his nights dreaming about the past — until the day the past came crashing home. Finally meeting his idol, he learned that he’d been chosen to become the newest version of The Rook. Given a set of weapons by his idol, Ian became the world’s newest nocturnal avenger. Alongside his lover, Fiona Grace, this version of The Rook was active from 2009-2012, when he gave his life to save humanity from a prophecy predicted by the Mayans. Ian had fathered a child with Fiona, though he did not live to see its birth.

Favorite Characters

Awhile back, I talked about some of my favorite books that I’d written but I also occasionally get asked about favorite characters. It’s a sticky question, since to some degree, I love all my creations — they’re my “babies,” as it were. But there are definitely ones that have a spot closer to my heart:

1) The Rook — Obviously, Max Davies would be near the top. I’ve written six books about him and he’s my most well-known creation. But I do have a love/hate relationship with him, in that when I do other projects, people always want to come back around to talk about The Rook. I’ve “finished” his series multiple times and always get sucked back in. Still, Max and his family are the backbone of the fictional pulp universe I’ve created and all the other characters exist in his shadow.

2) Lazarus Gray — For  years, I tried to create a viable second “series” to The Rook. I did some good projects along the way but nothing that really felt like I could do this series for years — until Lazarus Gray and his friends in Assistance Unlimited came along. Taking all the things I loved about The Avenger and mixing them up with my own supernatural-tinged style, Lazarus has quickly become one of my all-time favorites. The first seven stories featuring him should be out in September from Pro Se and then a full-length novel, Die Glocke, will follow in 2012.

3) Fiona Chapman — The star of my controversial novel Rabbit Heart, Fiona is the fictional outlet for my most visceral desires. Beautiful, intelligent and deadly, she’s the epitome of the “hot bad-ass girl with a sword” archetype. Though I may never do a sequel to the story, she’ll always be close to my heart.

4) Ascott Keane — Not my original creation but I feel connected to him because he’s appeared in multiple Rook stories and co-starred in Rabbit Heart. Though the original character fought Doctor Satan in the Golden Age of the Pulps, I think I’ve tweaked Ascott enough that I can feel a sense of ownership over him.

5) Violet Cambridge — Violet starred in The Damned Thing and had a cameo in The Rook Volume Six. A tough-as-nails lady P.I. in the late Thirties, Violet is a well-rounded character in my opinion. Her quasi-romance with Rook supporting character Will McKenzie was quite charming, in my opinion. Her novel was one of my most tightly-written works and I think it holds together very, very well.

Honorable mentions: Leonid Kaslov, Guan-Yin and The Furies.

The Killing Games

I’m currently working on a short story set in 1937, shortly after Max Davies (aka The Rook) married Evelyn Gould. Featuring an island that shouldn’t exist, Nazi weather-controlling machines and a healthy dose of romance, I think fans will enjoy this. It’ll be part of Pro Se Productions’ Cinematic Pulp series – and as for what Cinematic Pulp means, stay tuned 🙂


What’s On the Horizon?

I’m currently hard at work on what Pro Se Productions will be calling a “Cinematic Pulp” story. Basically, this means that I’m writing a novella that will have a LOT of artwork included with it — not enough to make it a true Graphic Novel but enough to warrant a new category for the work. I believe that artist Pete Cooper (YESTERYEAR) is attached to the project. The story is entitled THE ROOK: THE KILLING GAMES and it’s been a blast to write so far. More details to come.

The Rook Volume Six

The sixth volume in the bestselling Rook Chronicles is now in stores!. Featuring a cover by Ed Mironiuk and interior illustrations by Anthony Castrillo. Also, my short story “The Devil’s Workmen” will appear in The Avenger: The Justice Inc. Files from Moonstone Books. This collection of new stories featuring classic pulp hero The Avenger is due out soon. My story “Summer of Death” will appear in The Green Hornet Casefiles.