- The Morton Report: One of the things that really struck me about this particular book was a strong sense of place as a living, breathing thing, a historical organism composed of both natural and man-made artifacts and creatures.
- Warren Ellis: I was after that sense of standing on the surface of deep time, and history reaching up into the present world. Of American cities, I thought that could be done most successfully with New York.
- The Morton Report: How different is working in prose from working on comics for you?
- Warren Ellis: Remember, what you see in a comic is just the visible part of the writing. Beneath that, I’m describing every panel on every page in enough detail for the artist to understand what I’m looking for. In a book, however, I’m trying to evoke the image, so that it lives in the reader’s mind—which, perhaps counter-intuitively, requires less specific detail. Broad strokes, texture and atmosphere as opposed to blueprint specificity.
- Rankin: I live on Edinburgh and set my work there. You live in England but tend to set your stories in the US. Why is that?
- Ellis: I do find the country endlessly fascinating. It’s like a vast cultural oven. You put that many people in one place, with that many resources and that much freedom to elevate or destroy themselves, and then put it under pressure, and all kinds of weird and wonderful chemical events will happen. If there was a God, then America is something he would do if his television was broken: a constant source of entertainment.
The New York Journal of Books reviews Gun Machine:
A clever, clever story evoking the earthy darkness of the island’s long lost forests and illuminating it with a fiber optic flicker… . Here is a book anyone interested in the Big Apple should read—it is not only a hunt for an unforgettable killer, but a quest to exhume the many New Yorks that have evaded our eye.
FYI: Gun Machine is now on sale. Happy new year, indeed.