With Hugh Howey currently touring in Europe and the UK, he took some time to speak to the BBC about Wool’s rise to bestseller status and his thoughts on the likelihood that a movie will be made.
How involved were your readers in shaping Wool?
I liken it to the difference between recording an album in a studio and playing live. When you play live it’s you and an audience and you get energy from the applause.
Everyday I was getting emails, Facebook posts and tweets. It was energising knowing I was writing for an audience.
I’ve hidden my phone number in one of the books and people find it and call me randomly. It’s awkward when it happens but I like that blatant transparency about everything. This ride’s not going to last forever and why not just enjoy it?
What’s it like dealing with publicists and agents?
Hugh Howey’s sequel will be published next in April
Agents started calling me when the first four Wool books were topping the the science fiction chart on Amazon.
The agent I’m with now hired a co-agent in Hollywood to take it to JJ Abrams and Joss Whedon and all those guys – and Ridley Scott’s the one who won the rights for it.
How likely is it the film will get made?
I’ve had really low expectations because I’ve worked in the book industry and I’ve seen how many books get optioned – but everyone is really excited about this.
Me and Ridley Scott have exchanged emails, but he’s the top of the food chain and would get involved when this thing goes ahead.
Have Ridley Scott’s films been an influence?
I’m sure I was influenced growing up on Alien and I’m sure Ripley [the character played by Sigourney Weaver] was in my mind when I wrote the character of Juliette. I’m sure the pacing of Wool also harkens back to his older works where you can develop characters and tell the story rather than starting off with explosions.
The full interview can be read here.