Today I am interviewing Tim Lebbon, author of the new urban fantasy, horror novel, Relics.
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DJ: Hey Tim! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!
For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?
Tim Lebbon: Thanks for having me! I’m mid-40s (edging into late 40s), married, two kids, dog, all very average thus far. But I make a living writing novels. Relics is my 41st novel (including 7 in collaboration with Christopher Golden), and I’ve also written hundreds of short stories and novellas, and a handful of screenplays. I’ve won a few awards, had a movie made (Pay the Ghost with Nicolas Cage), and I’ve written horror, fantasy, science fiction, thrillers, and quite a few tie-in novels for Srar Wars, Hellboy, Alien, Predator, and other franchises. I love exercising––swimming, biking, running––and regularly race in triathlons. I’ve been bald since my early twenties, which is fine, because hair never suited me. I love real ale, a huge range of music, and cake (also a huge range). Don’t like shellfish.
DJ: What is Relics about?
Tim: Short version – Angela, a criminology student, discovers an underground trade in the relics of mythological creatures after her fiancé goes missing. As she searches for Vince, she encounters a crime boss dedicated to collecting these relics … and she realises that some of them aren’t old. Some are fresh.
Long version – buy the book!
DJ: What were some of your influences for Relics?
Tim: I had the idea of the relics after reading a lot about poaching in Africa, the trade in ivory and other animal parts, and paid hunts. The trade in old relics quickly turned into something more… Also, I really wanted to write a London thriller, and the two ideas merged really well.
DJ: Could you briefly tell us a little about your main characters? Do they have any cool quirks or habits, or any reason why readers with sympathize with them?
Tim: Well, that’s difficult to say in such a short space. I hope they are compelling. I have several point of view characters, but the main ones are Angela and Vince. They’re a couple, very much in love, but when Vince vanishes one day––and apparently leaves her a goodbye note––Angela won’t accept that he’s gone. She goes looking for him, and it’s this that leads her into the stranger, hidden world. A world he already knows a little abit about. I hope they’re realistic, and I think their relationship is the strong backbone of the whole novel.
DJ: What is the world and setting of Relics like?
Tim: It’s contemporary London.
DJ: Could you elaborate more on what underground black market is? What are some of the items that could be bought here?
Tim: You can buy relics from old, dead mythological creatures. An angel’s feather. A shrunken cyclops’s head. A mermaid’s scale. The more money you have, the more amazing things you can buy, all found by experienced relic hunters. It’s a secretive trade, because there aren’t that many relics found and demand is high. So, therefore, are the prices. Some people will go to extreme means to obtain these relics.
DJ: What was your favorite part about writing Relics?
Tim: Setting the novel in London. I’d written a couple of novels with a rural setting, including The Silence and The Hunt, so it was good to set this new novel in the big city. It has its own challenges––I live in the countryside, so perhaps don’t have a firm grasp of city life––but I’m pretty familiar with London, and I enjoyed the challenge of writing a novel with such a setting. I spent a couple of days wandering around, trying to absorb some of the atmosphere, understand the way London and its people work. I don’t think anyone really knows the city, so it was fun trying to imagine aspects that hardly anyone knows.
DJ: What do you think readers will be talking about most once they finish it?
Tim: I can’t try and second-guess what readers will like about the book. Hopefully different people will enjoy different aspects––the thriller elements, the Kin, the ending. I hope plenty of people will like all of it!
DJ: What was your goal when you began writing Relics? Is there a particular message or meaning you are hoping to get across when readers finish it? Or is there perhaps a certain theme to the story?
Tim: I don’t look to write novels with messages or themes. They might develop over the telling of a story, but I write entertainments, and that’s my first aim with everything I work on––write a good story and entertain the reader.
DJ: When I read, I love to collect quotes – whether it be because they’re funny, foodie, or have a personal meaning to me. Do you have any favorite quotes from Relics that you can share with us?
Tim: “Are you afraid I won’t believe you?”
“No, I’m afraid you will.”
DJ: Now that Relics is released, what is next for you?
Tim: Titan have just released my novelisation of the movie Kong: Skull Island. There are two more novels in the Relics universe, the second of which I’m writing right now. I’ve also just finished a fantasy novel with Christopher Golden. One of my novels is being optioned by a Hollywood studio, so that’s quite exciting (I can’t say much about it yet), and I’m also hoping to write some more thrillers. There are a few other movie and TV things ticking over, as well.
DJ: Where can readers find out more about you?
Facebook: Tim Lebbon
DJ: Before we go, what is that one thing you’d like readers to know about Relics that we haven’t talked about yet?
Tim: Well, I think it’d make a great TV series…
DJ: Thank you so much for taking time out of your day to answer my questions!
Tim: Thanks for having me!
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*** Relics is published by Titan Books and is available TODAY!!! ***
Buy the Book:
Amazon | Barnes & Nobel | Goodreads | Kobo
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When her fiancé Vince goes missing Angela Gough, an American criminology student, discovers that he was a part of this secretive trade. It’s a big-money business—shadowy, brutal, and sometimes fatal. As the trail leads her deeper into London’s dark side, she crosses paths with a crime lord whose life is dedicated to collecting such relics.
Then Angela discovers that some of these objects aren’t as ancient as they seem. Some of them are fresh.Gripping supernatural terror launching a new trilogy by the acclaimed author of Coldbrook (“distinct, unique, and absorbing”), The Silence (“truly addictive”), and the Alien-Predator “Rage War.“Tim Lebbon’s RELICS opens a darkly beautiful glimpse into another world, one lurking in the shadows, hovering at the corner of the eye. If Anne Rice and Clive Barker had written a story together, it might have looked something like this novel: richly imagined, fantastical, yet grounded in the grit and reality of modern-day London. I look forward to the wonders and terrors yet to come.”–JAMES ROLLINS, New York Times bestselling author of The Bone Labyrinth
“A magical, perilous drama full of characters who live and breathe, darkness you can feel…”–Christopher Golden, New York Times bestselling author of Ararat
“Tim Lebbon is an immense talent.”–Joe R. Lansdale, creator of Hap and Leonard
I’ve been published for over fifteen years and have written over thirty horror, dark fantasy and tie-in novels, including Coldbrook, The Cabin in the Woods, the Noreela series of fantasy books (Dusk, Dawn, Fallen and The Island), the NY Times Bestselling novelisation of the movie 30 Days of Night, Alien: Out of the Shadows, Star Wars: Dawn of the Jedi – Into the Void, and several books with Christopher Golden, including The Map of Moments and The Secret Journeys of Jack London. I’ve also written hundreds of novellas and novels. I’ve won several prestigious awards, and some of my work has been optioned for the big screen.