MIDNIGHT BLUE-LIGHT SPECIAL, the second novel in Seanan McGuire’s INCRYPTID series, launched today. I’ve read the first chapters and the book gets off to a rollickin’ start — no surprise for any adventure featuring Verity Price nor for any book coming from Seanan’s pen. As always, I’m honored to have Seanan stop by and spend a few minutes answering questions.
ANTHONY: Let’s start out with an easy one: where does MIDNIGHT BLUE-LIGHT SPECIAL pick up in relation to the previous book, DISCOUNT ARMAGEDDON? Can new readers jump right in with this volume, or do they need to read the books in order?
SEANAN: It’s always best to read things in order. I try to provide enough information to let new readers find their way in without feeling shut out, but the introductions all happened in the first book. MIDNIGHT BLUE-LIGHT SPECIAL picks up a few months after the events of DISCOUNT ARMAGEDDON, and focuses on the same central cast.
ANTHONY: What interesting new Cryptids are we introduced to this time around?
SEANAN: Hey, now. That would be telling.
ANTHONY: You can’t blame a guy for trying! Has your approach to writing Verity changed at all now that she has a full novel behind her?
SEANAN: Nope! If there’s something tall, she’ll try to jump off it; if there’s something that needs to be shot, she’ll shoot it; if there’s a dance floor available, she’ll be on it. She’s matured as a character–I feel like that’s inevitable–and she’ll continue to grow and learn, but the core of Verity Price remains the same, which means that writing her is fun and familiar.
ANTHONY: You’ve also written a number of short stories about the Healy-Price clan, three of which detail how Jonathan Healy and Frances Brown met in 1928. Will the Jonathan-Fran stories get collected in print form at some point?
SEANAN: I hope so? Honestly, that’s not something that’s easily within my control. If the main series keeps selling well, I’ll hopefully be able to convince DAW that we should do a collection of the Jonathan and Fran stories. I’ll have to write enough to make a volume first, so…
ANTHONY: I’ll keep my fingers crossed, as I really enjoyed those stories. There’s also so much more family history to explore — Alex and Enid Healy leaving The Covenant and the generation between Jonathan & Fran and Verity and her siblings, for two examples — so I have to ask: will we be seeing other stories that fill in the InCryptid backstory any time soon?
SEANAN: Yes, but. I tend to give those stories away for free, to say “thank you” to my fans for reading, and that means that they have to come after paying work. I eventually want to work all the way through Jonathan and Fran to Alice and Thomas, because Alice and Thomas are really the relationship that defined the current generation. It’s going to take me a while to get there, since again, I can’t always drop everything for another InCryptid short. I feel like it’s going to add a lot of depth to the later books in the series, though, so I keep pressing forward.
ANTHONY: Of all the holidays celebrated by the Aeslin Mice, what is your favorite?
SEANAN: It varies, but I’m very fond of the Sacred Rite of What the Hell is That Thing, I Don’t Know, We’re Gonna Need a Bigger Gun.
ANTHONY: The last time we chatted, I asked about your favorite book and you discussed IT and 2012 being the latest in Pennywise The Clown’s cycle. Now that 2012 is over — was Pennywise’s latest rampage everything you hoped it would be?
SEANAN: It was, it really, really was. I went to Maine and spent time with Cat Valente, whom I adore, and we tramped all over Bangor, and it was glorious. I’m so glad I’m a geek.
ANTHONY: Oh, I wish I could have been along on that trip! Finally, any other upcoming projects you’d like to tell us about?
SEANAN: Right now, I’m working on the eighth Toby Daye book and the third InCryptid book. Coming out in the next year, I have MIDNIGHT BLUE-LIGHT SPECIAL–naturally–as well as the seventh Toby book, CHIMES AT MIDNIGHT, which I’m very proud of. There’s a new Mira Grant coming up, PARASITE, which doesn’t have a release day yet. And then there’s VELVETEEN VS. THE MULTI-VERSE, which wraps up the first Velveteen vs. cycle. It’s going to be a busy year!
You can keep up with Seanan’s news, learn more about the InCryptid universe, and find two of the InCryptid stories referenced above by visiting Seanan’s website, and you can also follow her on Twitter @seananmcguire.