Leigh Holland’s Interview with George Bachman
Today, I’m interviewing George Bachman, author of “Spellcaster”, on my blog. Thanks, George, for the interview!
Thank you for speaking with me.
Leigh: Tell us a little about yourself.
I work in the software sector in New York in addition to writing.
Leigh: What inspired you to write Spellcaster? What drew you to Historical Fiction with a paranormal component?
I’ve always wanted to write something on the late Victorian era around the turn of the century, when social attitudes among the English aristocracy were under attack by wealthy Americans trying to penetrate their ranks. I have also always wanted to do a paranormal novel incorporating a whole range of historical magic beliefs such as those practiced by Aleister Crowley and his circle. I thought an alternate reality fantasy novel such as Mark Helprin’s Winter’s Tale or one of John Crowley’s Aegypt books would be the perfect medium to incorporate all these things.
Leigh: What was the most difficult thing about writing Spellcaster?
Dialogue is the most difficult part of any story, always. Besides that, making the magic believable in a recognizable social milieu.
Leigh: Which writers have inspired you?
Generally, Nabakov, because of his love of language, Cao Xueqin, because of his ability to mix fantasy and reality to make immersive worlds, Calvino, because of his intelligent use of genre, and Austen, because of her genius in creating characters that seem to walk off the page. For this particular story, Helprin because of his haunting magic realism and Crowley because of his inventiveness in mixing history and fiction.
Leigh: How much research did you do for Spellcaster?
Quite a bit. Most of the rituals in the book are historical or have a strong historical basis. I tried to get the social reality as right as I could to make the steampunk elements more believable. The historical background of the Sir Tomas section is how it may have been if a few facts had been different (such as Edward II not inheriting Gascony as a feudal vassal) with many real-life players of that era.
Leigh: What is your writing process like? Do you have a set writing schedule? Do you work from an outline or write the first draft from strict inspiration?
I generally write after work when I’m not doing anything else, for as many hours as I can fit in, no set schedule. I have a very general outline telling me where I’m heading and the major points to hit, not much else. The outline is the initial inspiration which never entirely goes away as I fill in more and more details.
Leigh: What are you working on now? Can you tell us anything about it?
Another historical fantasy, this one set in Renaissance Europe.
Leigh: What book are you currently reading?
Diarmaid MacCulloch’s Christianity: The First Three Thousand Years.
Leigh: Who designed your book cover?
A very talented artist named Clarissa Yeo, of Yocla Book Designs.
Leigh: What are some of your hobbies?
Travel, reading, Asian cinema, and anime.
Leigh: Where can readers find out more about you and your work?
Amazon Author Page: George Bachman’s Amazon Page
Goodreads: George Bachman at Goodreads
Thank you very much, George, for taking the time out of your busy schedule to take part in this interview.
You can find George Bachman’s “Spellcaster” at: Spellcaster.