Interview : Eoin Colfer

Réalisée par :Mail
Date :février 2006
Allan : Before talking about the Opal Deception, which was published in January in France, I want to exchange about you ; what do you accept to say us about you, about your course ?
Eoin : : I am a forty year old Irish man. I write about traditional Irish subjects, magic and fantasy, but I like to put a modern spin on things, and introduce technology into the mix.

Allan : United Kingdom manage to “export” easily their fantasy’s authors whereas in France, we must have wait for the adaptation of Lord of the ring or Harry Potter to start speaking about this particular literature : what are for you reasons of this decalage ?
Eoin : : I don’t know why this is the case, there are I am sure
many wonderful french language writers. I think the United States is very influential in these trends, and Irish and English books do not have to be translated.

Allan : Since I have make allusion to Harry Potter, what do you think of his success ?
Eoin : : I think it is great. I am a fan of Harry’s and JK Rowling has helped to convert millions of children to reading.

Allan : I do not want to compare your two characters as the story are totally different but I find that the success of Artemis is more interessant because you do not take profit of a massive publicity ; Artemis became famous gradually… When you take retreat, do you have preferred having a massive publicity or you find this way more interessant ?
Eoin : : I am very happy with Artemis and the way he progressed. I think if the books had been overhyped at the beginning there might have been a backlash. This way my fans are loyal and stay with me from book to book.

Allan : You are the first English that I interview so I want to know if the press is as severe in England as she was in France where Imaginary literatures are percued as under-literature ?
Eoin : : Some critics do not rate fantasy books, but generally some of the most revered books are in that genre, Lord of the Rings for example, so the general feeling is acceptance.
Allan : Do you read French authors ?
Eoin : : I read Dumas of course, but only in the translated form. My French is not that good yet.

Allan : We are now going to speak about Artemis. The first think that surprise me is the aspect “bad boy” of the character : we are more used to see nice boy or girl as hero in children’s literature… Do you want to break stereotype ?
Eoin : : I wanted to try and be original, though there is a history of bad boys dating back to Tom Sawyer and even the Artful Dodger, but they are less plentiful than straightforward heroes.

Allan : The boy is particulary “intelligent” but us his talent to conceal or to increase his personnal fortune : to be genius inevitably lead to bad acts ?
Eoin : : I think that genius does not nevcessarily have to be negative, as the books progress, Artemis moves on to more positive work.

Allan : I must recognize I have only read the last opus and I have not had problem to enter the story. Do you want to allow the readers understanding each story even if they have not read the firsts book ?
Eoin : : Yes, I wanted the books to be standalone adventures, though it is better to start at the beginning.

Allan : I have been surprised to by the freedoms you have take with chararactéristics of elves,dwarfs… Do you be aware that some addicts are chocked by this ?
Eoin : : Yes, I have had a few complaints from purists, but most fantasy fans are delighted to see a new interpretation of old favourites.

Allan : Now, a question that is in all spirit : will you continue with Artemis Fowl ?
Eoin : : I think there wil be 6 Artemis books, then he will hang up his book of evil plans.

Allan : I know that you came in January in France : do you frequently come and what part do you grant to the contact with your readers ?
Eoin : : I come to France at least twice a year, once on holidays and once on business. When I am here, I like to visit bookstores and meet the readers ans sometimes do readings.

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