Visions of Rebirth – Interview

Zuletzt aktualisiert am 4. November 2021 von DarkISI

Wie auch schon bei Fall from Glory, hat Randall sich auch für Visions of Rebirth die Zeit genommen, meine Interviewfragen zu beantworten.

Viel Spaß mit dem zweiten Interview der Founding of the Clans Trilogie.

HPG Station: Hello Randall,
since the first interview was great and well received, I think it would be great to do another one to cover Visions of Rebirth.

Randall N. Bills: Awesome. It was an enjoyable exercise the first time to walk back through the process. I’m sure this will be the same.


HPG: Last time you corrected me and told us, that Fall from Glory actually was released in English, contrary to popular believe, in form of a Battlecorps series. Is the same true for Visions of Rebirth?

RNB: No. Visions of Rebirth was never released via Battlecorps. So for any non-German speaking fans, this will be their first experience with the second novel, beyond the tidbits in sourcebooks, or if they perused


HPG: I think the second question can easily be the same as last time. You said around 25,000 words were added or changed for this one. That’s more than double from what was added for Fall from Glory. Do you have an exact number?

RNB: 28,832.

Visions of Rebirth auf kaufen (Taschenbuch & E-Book)
Buy Visions of Rebirth on Amazon – International Link to YOUR Amazon (paperback & eBook)
Visions of Rebirth auf Drivethru kaufen (E-Book)


HPG: Aside from additional content being added, you also said on Kickstarter that you massaged a few things. What exactly does that mean? Was the story actually changed or just corrected a little bit to fit with more recent sources?

RNB: At its heart, the story absolutely remains the same. But there were some subtle changes, one not so unsubtle change, and then huge amounts of additions. As I believe I mentioned in the previous interview, I’m simply a much better writer and storyteller than I was fifteen years ago (I sure hope that’s the case). Additionally, I really wrote those books in a vacuum, without the wonderful editorial, development and continuity apparatus that we’ve built today. So even outside of having additional content to review in various sourcebooks to determine how best to bring it into this novel, that additional apparatus, along with better skills, enabled us to see the many flaws that were in the previous book. And we worked hard to correct all of that.


HPG: What story arch from original version required the most massaging?

RNB: mmm…well that’s two-fold. The one that outright changed was Andery’s arc with Dana. I don’t want to spoil anything, but the position where he’s at with her in the previous version vs. this definitive edition is different; I.e. I’d originally planned on having that arc pass into the third book, but then realized I was wrong in that story tempo and so moved that transition to this book.

But that was really a singular change. The other change that was not so stark, but where the majority of the word count and massaging came in, was simply Andery’s over-all trajectory vs. his brother. Why was Andery doing what he was doing? Why did he feel so lost and swept up in Nicholas’ current. What transpired in some of the more bloody moments? I glossed far too much through those incredibly important moments: both macro and micro. And obviously, after nearly thirty thousand words added, there is no more glossing, but diving in to really get at the heart of what makes Andery tick.


HPG: Had Betrayal of Ideals any impact on Visions of Rebirth and its additional content?

RNB: Not a lot, actually. Blaine’s novel is very tightly woven to that time period so there was not a lot that I needed to add here. I did specifically dig up some nice little details to weave into the novel. For example he specifically mentions that the building of the Hall of the Khans was done with stones from the Pentagon Worlds once they were conquered. A wonderful bit of world-building that I ensured to include in this novel.


HPG: Since you hinted at that in our last interview: was there any scene in Visions of Rebirth that made you go „what the hell did I do there?“?

RNB: It was less a specific scene but more the lack of a scene. One of the biggest mantras of writing is “show, don’t tell.” And like all rules of writing, they are guidelines that can and should be ignored. But only if you have a more powerful way to tell that story. However, in one crucial instance of the previous iteration of the novel, when a critical moment occurs and Andery is forced into actions he never imagined he was capable of, I simply skipped said actions and jumped to the aftermath. I realized in hindsight I was missing an incredibly important moment of his progression. Showing the price we all pay when we are forced into such untenable positions. That new, long, multi-scene chapter ended up being one of the favorite of the entire book. Primarily because it’s a tough, emotional read that has you breathing a sigh of tension-filled relief when you finish. Those are the best moments in any novel.


HPG: I heard a few people complaining Andery was too whiny in the first book. Personally, I think you painted all his doubts and his minority complex very well. What do you think? Especially looking back at it after so many years? We saw some major character growth towards the end of Fall from Glory, is he a stronger personality in the second book?

RNB: Andery was always going to have imposter syndrome. He has a father that is one of the greatest personalities in millennia, responsible for some of the best, and simultaneously most deplorable, actions in human-occupied space. And then he’s got an incredibly passionate and powerful mother that somehow enables the to survive under Amaris. And then a brother whose as driven (if not more so), by the horrors and hard calls made to survive a brutal occupation. It’s nearly impossible, IMO, in that scenario, not to have that imposter syndrome fully baked into you.
However, I get it. It can be a little difficult to deal with such characters. I remember, all those years ago, reading The Wheel of Time was it was first publishing, and book after book Rand is whining and whining. “Come on!” Until he finally comes into his own and I’m like “YES! Finally!”

So yes, Andery was always going to be “whining” in the first book. But I hope readers can strive to step back and try and put themselves in his place (as impossible as that may be). And wonder if they might not be filled within whining as well.. And yes, there is still self-doubts in the second book as he continues to progress. But I believe it’s not nearly as much as the first book, as he has found a little more support. But there will be a moment in book 2 when he reaches a new level of that progression…and its brutal and painful. But hopefully also a pay off moment for the readers.


HPG: How you look at Nicholas? Is he a megalomanic nutjob or more of a tragic character, who suffered so many psychological wounds, that he really did what he thought was the right thing?

RNB: Both. He absolutely is a megalomaniac. And I do not want to diminish many of the monstrous actions he took. So I’m not trying to turn him into a fully sympathetic character. I think that would do a disservice to all that’s been written. Instead, I’ve tried to just provide a little more depth, a little more understanding. Moments where you wonder “if I was in those shoes, might I have made a few of the same decisions?” Hopefully for all of us the answers to nearly every question is an unequivocal no. But if even one of those moments leaves you with a “maybe”, then I believe I’ve done my job.

Visions of Rebirth auf kaufen (Taschenbuch & E-Book)
Buy Visions of Rebirth on Amazon – International Link to YOUR Amazon (paperback & eBook)
Visions of Rebirth auf Drivethru kaufen (E-Book)

HPG: Last question. Since you didn’t write the third book back when you wrote the first two, but only recently: did you change your original plan for the third book based on feedback that came in over the years and would it have gone differently, had you not had the chance to add content to and massage the first two books?

RNB: Yea I am very confident that the book would’ve been very different if I’d written it all those years ago. If for no other reason then I tried something exceptionally ambitious with the third book. And it’s simply not something I would’ve been capable of pulling off previously.

Not to mention there would not have been Operations: Klondike. I thanked Christoffer Trossen and Chris Hartford in book 2 for all the amazing work they did on their magnum opus work of the Reunification War, Liberation of Terra volumes I & II and Operation Klondike historicals; Klondike remains one of my all-time favorite BT sourcebooks. But in book three I delve into the details there as I’ve never had to do before. Since all of that came after I’d written the first two, I don’t think it would’ve been nearly as strong; just a wonderful synergy between the novels and sourcebooks.

Obviously we won’t know until its released to the community, but hopefully the final book is the pay-off to the Founding of the Clans that everyone has been waiting for. Especially since I worked incredibly hard to introduce an “ah, ha!” moment towards the end. Pretty difficult considering how much has been written in those sourcebooks. But again, just have to wait and see if I pulled the surprise off or not.


HPG: Thank you for your time. And prepare for more questions in a couple months, when the third book arrives. We will also have the usual cover analysis for the awesome new cover up on Sunday.

RNB: I dropped a few hints about book three above. So yeah, once again, this has been a joy. I very much look forward to delving into more questions in the next interview. Thanks!

Dir gefällt die HPG Station? Du willst sie unterstützen? Dann hilf, sie zu finanzieren (Webspace kostet Geld und die News hier eine Menge Zeit und irgendwelche Werbebanner oder Trackingcookis will ich absolut nicht hier haben).

Du kannst entweder einem der Links auf der Seite zu, Amazon (COM, CA, FR, IT, UK…) oder Drivethru folgen oder auch gerne PayPal Me nutzen und ein Dankeschön hinterlassen. NEU! Gerne könnt ihr die HPG Station auch über Patreon unterstützen.

Kleiner Babymech/Little Baby Mech ist als kostenlose Fangeschichte verfügbar. Das perfekte Buch für alle kleinen Battletech-Fans.

Ein Gedanke zu „Visions of Rebirth – Interview

Schreibe einen Kommentar

Deine E-Mail-Adresse wird nicht veröffentlicht. Erforderliche Felder sind mit * markiert