Today we have the pleasure of presenting James Frey. James and Nils Johnson-Shelton have co-authored the book ENDGAME. The book is already being made into a movie and as a game.
Hi James. Thanks for joining us.
What’s it like knowing that your book is already on its way to being a movie before it’s even on the shelves? When can we expect to be lining up for tickets?
It's exciting. I was thrilled when Marty Bowen and Wyck Godfrey decided they wanted to work on this with me, and the people at Fox have been amazing. I'm going to get out of the way and let them do what they do best, which is make cool movies.
What inspired you to add interactive puzzles to your book?
I read a book called Masquerade by Kip williams as a kid. It was a book with a puzzle in it. If you solved the puzzle you won a gold rabbit worth 50 grand. I loved it and was fascinated by it and always wanted to do something like it. I am also fascinated by all of technology we have at our disposal today, things like the internet, mobile phones, search engines, social media, GPS maps and easily made and delivered video. I look at them all as additional storytelling tools. I wanted to do something that used all of them, and told a story across multiple platforms and used multiple technologies.
Along with owning a review site I’m also the CEO of WEtap Media, a software development company. I’m interested in what your augmented reality game, based on your books storyline, will be like. Do you have any news on that? Who’s producing it and when can we expect to buy it? Will you be doing anything with VR, Virtual Reality...the Oculus Rift (Oculus Rift) headset?
I am doing the Endgame mobile game and ARG with Google Niantic, which made an amazing game called Ingress. Can't say much about it right now except that it is going to be amazing.
Take us into the book series. What can readers expect from the plot? The characters? The experience? The overall series from book to book?
The book is about a game that has been prophesied and foretold for thousands of years. Generations of players have trained for it in secret. It starts when 12 asteroids slam into earth's surface. The outcome of the game will determine the future, if any, of humanity. The story is told over the course of three novels, and a series of novellas. I hope readers find it exciting and fun, it keeps them turning the pages to find out what happens next.
Where did you first come up with the concept of Endgame? What experiences and current day objects played a part?
Like I mentioned, I had been thinking about Masquerade for years, and thinking about what a contemporary book with a puzzle using today's technology might look like. I came up with the story about three years ago, wrote the first book with Nils about two years ago, and have been the puzzle and the universe since then.
How do you plan to celebrate the bookshelf release? The movie premier?
I'm really nervous and excited. We're having a launch party in NY the day the book comes out (you should come to it!). The movie won't be for awhile. Movie premieres are always kind of nuts. Lights cameras people. I'm a writer. I love being alone in a room for days on end.
Where can readers meet you?
I'll be doing a 12 city tour for Endgame. I'll be in the US, Canada and the UK.
Are you a crowd pleaser or do you prefer to hide in the back and hope no one sees you?
I definitely get nervous before an event, and I'm always terrified no one is going to show up, but I like readings and touring. It's a chance to say thank you to all of the booksellers and readers who support my work.
Outside of apocalyptic titles, what other genres do you write?
This is my first apocalyptic title! I've written four other books, none of which really fits into a specific genre. They were just books I wanted to write.
The cover of your book has a symbol on it. How does that play into the story / world?
The symbol is based on the symbol of ancient secret society. I can't tell you which one, you're going to have to figure it out yourself!
Thanks James for interviewing with me. I'm looking forward to reading your book and figuring out the puzzles.