What made you decide to write Arthur's story?
A lot of it came from the fact that, while Ireland has a very rich mythology background, I've never read any fantasy set in modern day Ireland. Every other country is well represented by children's fantasy except Ireland. I just really liked the idea of seeing a monster rampaging through Dublin.
You've had an interest in Viking lore from a young age, did you have to do much research to write this novel?
I knew a little bit about the Norse legends beforehand - the story of Loki especially - but the myths have so much more to offer. I got a great translation of the legends and read them all a couple of times as I was writing the second draft and this really made the book a lot more interesting. The devil is most certainly in the details.
Arthur Quinn is a great name, had you considered others? I had a whole long list of names that I went through at one stage. I was pretty certain that his name had to be Arthur. It's actually a Celtic name that means 'Follower of Thor' so it seemed to suit very nicely. Quinn was my first choice for surname but I did go through a lot of them. In the end it was just a case of finding a name that had a nice ring to it.
Was it Dublin itself that inspired you to set the story there? I've been living in Dublin for a few years now and it just struck me that you only ever read dramas or comedies or crime novels set in the city. I'm a big fan of Doctor Who and love seeing the aliens destroy Big Ben or daleks on Tower Bridge. I just really wanted to give Dublin its own monster.
Do you think this helped you establish a strong sense of place? Once I'd decided that the book had to be set in Dublin, it certainly made things easier for me. I could picture very strongly in my head where the action was taking place, where Arthur would go to next, how he'd hide from the World Serpent, etc.
What was the publication process like for you?
ARTHUR QUINN AND THE WORLD SERPENT
Something wicked has awoken under the streets of Dublin ...
When his dad is offered a job working on the new Metro tunnel, Arthur has to move to Dublin with him. While exploring the dangerous tunnel and a hidden underground river, Arthur and his new friends Will and Ash find a mysterious glowing pendant. The pendant depicts a giant snake strangling the trunk of a tree. The friends soon figure out that the pendant is a warning, a sign that something evil is waiting underneath the city. Something that's been imprisoned for a thousand years, something left by the Vikings, something that can - and will - destroy first the city, then the world.
What did the Vikings bury under the city of Dublin and why did they leave it there? Who is the dark man that spies on Arthur and what is his evil plan? In the end, only Arthur and his friends can save the world from the dreaded World Serpent.
To find out more about Arthur Quinn and the World Serpent check out the Arthur Quinn Website and Facebook Page.
And be sure to watch the brilliant trailers on You Tube.
ABOUT ALAN EARLY
Born in Leitrim and now living in Dublin, Alan Early studied in the National Film School, Dun Laoghaire. Upon graduation in 2008, he co-founded Annville Films. From an early age he used to write and illustrate short stories about Banshees and ghost animals and whatever else struck his imagination. When he was ten, he visited Dublinia, a recreated Viking village and so began a love affair with Viking lore.
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