byÂ CraigÂ Knight
Thirty years ago it began with Magician and rather fittingly concludes with Magicianâ€™s End. Did you ever imagine the Riftwar Cycle would be so successful and span so many books?
Not until I got deep into the Serpent War saga.Â Then it started to dawn on me we might end up doing all 5 Riftwars.Â Didn’t know how many books that would take at the time.
How do you feel now that the Riftwar Cycle has come to an end and you reflect on the series and its conclusion?
It’s too soon for anything like perspective.Â I’m pleased the series found an audience and that for the most part that audience stuck it out.Â I find like any project I can look back and think of a couple of things I could have done better, but that’s always the case.Â On the whole I’m pleased with how things turned out.
Looking back at the entire series, is there anything you would have done differently with the benefit of hindsight?
Appropriate follow-up to the previous question.Â Nothing major.Â There are a couple of places where I think I could have made a different choice.Â And some stuff that got put in that never went anywhere.Â In Shadow of a Dark Queen I introduce Miranda through the gimmick of her saving Erik and Roo while she’s disguised as an old crone, a whole spy disguise thing I basically dropped as soon as Miranda came on stage.Â I could have cut that entire bit, for example.
There are quite a few plot strands to resolve from the previous books, not least being Pugâ€™s prophesised demise. What can readers expect to encounter in Magicianâ€™s End?
Without getting into spoilers, I hope the reader finds the conclusion makes sense given what has occurred in the previous books.Â There will be some triumphs among all the ashes, and a few happy endings for some characters.Â What I hope the reader finds satisfying is the explanation of why things went the way they did.
Has writing Magicianâ€™s End been more difficult or challenging than previous books as you seek to bring things to a conclusion?
Not really.Â The most challenging aspect was the wrapping up of loose ends, some of which go back to Magician.
Will you be bidding a fond farewell to Midkemia or do you think youâ€™ll return at some point in the future?
Never say never.Â Midkemia is a virtual world, and I’m writing basically a history of an imaginary place.Â Lots of things went on after the Rifwar Cycle, though not on that comic scale, of course.Â I certainly could do more stories in Midkemia.
Do you have any other projects planned that you can tell us about?
At this point I’m in discussion with my publisher about what’s next.Â We’ve more or less agreed in principle to a new series, The War of the Five Crowns, which appears to be a trilogy.Â The first book is entitled King of Ashes.
Iâ€™m sure all your readers will want to express their heartfelt thanks for giving us such a fascinating and enjoyable story over the years. Do you have any words for your fans before we get to grips with Magicianâ€™s End?
Yes, please.Â Thank you for the support.Â Without your affection and spending your hard earned money on my stories, I’d be doing something else.Â So, again, thank you all very much.
Check out our review of Magician’s End HERE