What can you find here? Reviews of new and not quite so new Sherlock Holmes novels and collections. Interviews with authors, link to blogs worth following, links to where you can purchase my books and some reviews of my work garnered from Amazon sites. Plus a few scary pics of me and a link to various Lyme Regis videos on YouTube...see what we do here and how....and indeed why!!! Next to the Lyme Regis Video Bar is a Jeremy Brett as Holmes Video Bar and now a Ross K Video Bar. And stories and poems galore in the archives.

Thursday, 31 March 2016

MORE BEYOND WATSON with Luke Benjamen Kuhns

I have Luke Benjamen Kuhns with me today. Not literally (I might have to feed him!). Luke is a London based crime writer and reviewer. He has published several novels including The Untold Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (now in Italy & India), Studies in Legacy and graphic novels The Horror of Frankenstein and Case of The Crystal Blue Bottle. He also  contributed to the Fan Phenomena series: Sherlock Holmes, spoke at University College London’s Past and Present conference on pastiche writing and was featured on the Japanese TV Network NHK. 

First of all, I hope I am forgiven for taking your family name in vain in 'An American Adventure'.

 HA! No, no I had no problem with that. The Kuhns' are a crazy bunch from my experience. 
Your short story collections are well-known for the great plotting of the individual pieces. The question is: How the hell do you keep coming up with them?                         

 I find it really hard, to be honest. Sometimes I feel like these stories could be full length novels or novellas. Which is exactly what happened with The Scarlet Thread of Murder. But often I try and come up with a good murder or I'm inspired by something I've seen somewhere and go from there. But it's no easy task. Especially when you do lots of short stories, because you sometimes want to reuse ideas but you don't want to come across as lazy or unimaginative so you always got to push yourself to come up with new or interesting characters and narratives. 

How does your home or work life inform your writing? Is it easy to find the time you need? 

Yes, there are influences. A conversation here, a comment there can sometimes be the basis of a subplot or lead to an interesting piece of interaction within a story. I know my story The Acquitted Client (in Untold Adventures) was based on my friend who had an issues with a cabdriver that lead to a court case, lots of fees, before finally being acquitted when the driver was actually in the wrong. So work and personal life is always a source of inspiration, often it's just finding the right Victorian setting for that! And no, it's never easy to find time!! Often is very hard and you work through the tiredness in order to get things done.  

You have collaborated with some very talented people on a series of Sherlock Holmes graphic books. How did that come about and can we expect more? 

Crystal Bottle (my first) was a charity effort and that put m in contact with lots of illustrators (many of whom I've developed great friendships with). But how it came about was that I simply wanted to try and comic but I didn't have the funds to pay, hence why we did a book with royalties for Undershaw and many many illustrators were keen to help. I met Marcie Klinger who illustrated a part of Crystal Bottle and went on to do my second book. We have a third in the works, but not sure when it'll be ready. But I would like to do more comic book in the future. Marvel, here I come! 

How did you find writing your piece for 'Beyond Watson' given the non-involvement of Watson? 

It was a very fun challenge. Scarlet Thread of Murder was a story that in some part featured Holmes but didn't always get told by Watson, so I loved the idea of writing a Watson-free story.  The tricky bit was writing a story that hadn't been done before! I always loved the character of Violet Hunter and thought it would be incredibly fun to see where she was and if she had any other adventures or interactions with Sherlock Holmes. 

Do you feel you have grown as a writer through your Sherlock Holmes tales? 

Certainly. I was incredibly inexperienced when I wrote Untold Adventures and it painfully shows! But I laugh it off now. Holmes/Arthur Conan Doyle have been great to research and learn from. Writing these stories have put me in contact with some really wonderful writers who have been great influences and encouragements to me. I'm certainly no pro. I might have graduated from Freshmen to Sophomore, but no further! Or I might still be in that Freshmen year. haha! But I've picked up some great tips that have aided my second and third books. 

What can we expect from you in the near and far future?

I am completing a historical piece about Undershaw, that will be releasing in July/August of this year. It'll be a very short intro to Arthur Conan Doyle and his early life and his time at Undershaw. I still have a graphic novel on the back burners and I'm writing my first wholly original crime novel that I can't say much about now. But I'm really excited for it and seeing where it might take me. 

Visit Luke's website: HERE

For the latest news on Beyond Watson: HERE

1 comment:

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Nice interview. It was interesting to learn about how varied Kuhns' writings have been, even the pivoting about the character of Sherlock Holmes.