Recently, Phoenix Comic Fest staff had a chance to sit down with Melinda Snodgrass, screenwriter and author of the Wild Card series. Check out the interview below and catch her at Phoenix Comic Fest 2018 this May 24-27, 2018 at the Phoenix Convention Center.
I really love the amazing costumes that you get to see at a comic convention. I can’t sew a stitch so I find this both delightedly and awe-inspiring. And I love connecting with fans and just talking, and answering any questions people might have. Writing is a very generous profession. A lot of people helped me with my career and I like to pay it forward.
A novelist friend of mine, Victor Milan, invited me to a large group autographing and afterward, they let me tag along to Fred Saberhagen’s house. I wandered from room to room listing to people like Suzy Charnas and Fred and Roger Zelazny talking and I realized these were the most interesting people I had ever met and I wanted to be with them not with lawyers. So I started writing and I sold and the rest is history.
Another dear friend, George R.R. Martin, helped me make that transition. George and I had been friends and in a gaming group together and after he went out to Hollywood he called and said, “Hey, Snod, I think you’d be pretty good at this screenwriting thing and if you write a spec script I’ll show it to my agent. So I did, and it landed me my first job on Star Trek: The Next Generation and I’ve just continued since then.
Understanding that less is more. If a section of dialogue is over four lines long it better be the final speech from The American President or the filibuster speech from Mr. Smith Goes to Washington or the famous Network speech.
It’s a big space opera that will take my two main characters from age 18 in the first book to their fifties in book 5. It’s got aliens and social issues of class and the role of women and also a love story at its heart. And of course, there are some battles.
The sex scene. I find them very hard to write. They can be either too clinical or just too cotton candy.
Noel Matthews aka Double Helix from Wild Cards. He is such a grey character and such a bastard. On the other end of the spectrum is Richard Oort the hero from my Edge books. He’s a paladin.
Not just George. I’m collaborating with up to 7 other writers when we do a Wild Cards book. Writing for a shared world is the closest you’ll get to the experience in a Hollywood writers room while writing prose. George and I co-created Wild Cards together a lot of years ago and we are still going strong.
I just finished the fourth Imperials novel, I’m writing for and editing the upcoming Wild Cards book Three Kings, and developing Wild Cards for television.