[Editor's Note: Jim Butcher will read from and sign copies of his new Dresden Files novel, Changes, on Thursday, April 8th, at 7p.m. at our Cedar Hills Crossing store. (Click here for more info.) To honor the occasion, we're pleased to feature Butcher's Powell's Q&A from 2007.
Describe your latest book.
Most recently, I've been pounding out the fourth book in the Codex Alera series, Captain's Fury, and I'm in the midst of writing the finale even as I write these words. With any luck, it will be done before the weekend is out.
But the latest release is White Night, the ninth book of the Dresden Files. In it, Harry Dresden, Wizard at Large, manages to get himself involved in yet another fine mess when he comes across the trail of a serial killer who is murdering members of the magical middle class, the have-nots of the wizard world. He sets off to find and stop the killer before he can strike again ? and begins to get really nervous when mounting evidence makes a bleak case against his half-brother Thomas, the White Court vampire.
When one is dealing with the White Court, though, nothing is ever quite what it appears to be ? and Dresden may finally have gotten in over his head one time too many.
If someone were to write your biography, what would be the title and subtitle?
How to Slay Dragons, Catch Unicorns, Break into Publishing, and Do 101 Other Impossible Things, or... The Little Author That Could.
What fictional character would you like to date, and why?
Lara Raith, because at the end of the date, she'd kill me, which would save my wife the effort.
I'm polite like that.
Introduce one other author you think people should read, and suggest a good book with which to start.
Everyone, but everyone, should check out Naomi Novik and her Temeraire series, beginning with His Majesty's Dragon. Highly imaginative fantasy world, very believable, very intriguing and fun. She writes fantasy the way it ought to be written. Only she doesn't do it fast enough!
Offer a favorite sentence or passage from another writer.
"Death drove a green Lexus." It's a bitching first line for a novel from, I think, a book called Tick Tock by Dean Koontz.
What is your astrological sign? If you don't like what you were born with, to what sign would you change and why?
Scorpio on the cusp of Libra. Since I've got some Libra, it means I like wide spaces and big open rooms, but because I'm mostly Scorpio I WANT THEM ALL TO MYSELF! RARRRRRRGH!!!!
And come on, I'm a freaking Scorpio. We're wicked sexy and a little bit crazy. What Scorpio wouldn't want to be a Scorpio?
What is your idea of absolute happiness?
Sitting in a dark, quiet living room on a summer evening with the windows up, the lights out, heat lightning and summer thunder on the horizon, a newly-finished chapter on the laptop and my wife and son sleeping safe and sound in bed, knowing that anything that wants to hurt them is going to have to come through me.
Finishing a close second to that is being piled on the couch with wife, son, and dog, eating Burger King and watching Buffy.
What is your favorite indulgence, either wicked or benign?
I'm a video game addict. No, not a nerdy guy who plays games a lot. An addict. Only that's not the right word because I DON'T HAVE A PROBLEM AND I CAN QUIT ANY TIME I WANT.
I've quit sixteen times in this year alone!
I've got multiple high level characters on Everquest and City of Heroes/Villains. I'm a Major in Battlefield II and a Brigadier General in Battlefield 2142! Do you have any idea what that means? One more rank, and I get to be... drum roll... a MAJOR. GENERAL.
Yes, yes. A Major General!
I'll be the very model of a modern major general; I'll have information vegetable, animal, and mineral; I'll know the Kings of England, and I'll quote the facts historical, from Marathon to Waterloo in order categoric? You get the picture.