Andrew Lane is a household name thanks to his Young Sherlock Holmes novels, written with the blessing of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's estate, so it was something of a coup when he agreed to write a brand new story for SHARKPUNK...
Sharkpunk: What, do you think, is the reason for people's enduring fascination with sharks?
Andrew Lane: Sharks don't think, or emote, or worry. They just go straight for whatever it is they want and they don't give up. In that sense, they're somewhere between James Bond and a full scale psychopath, and I think that's why we both fear them and are fascinated by them. Sometimes we wish we could have that single-mindedness, that lack of distraction, and that complete focus. Just sometimes.
SP: What was the inspiration behind your story Blood Relations?
AL: I had a feeling that enough people would be writing stories about... er... actual sharks, and so I wanted to go off at a tangent and write about what would happen if you could cross a man, in some biological sense, with a shark. What would happen? What would he experience? There's also the metaphor there somewhere about a man seeking something in the city in the same way that a shark seeks out its prey in the ocean.
SP: What challenges, or surprises, did you encounter in writing your story?
AL: The challenge was to portray a man who has been given an entirely different set of senses. What would that be like? How would be experience the world?
SP: If you had to pick a favourite shark, which would it be?
AL: I have a fondness for the Hammerhead Shark, on the basis that it looks really cool and nobody really knows why its head is actually that shape.
SP: Do you have a favourite fictional shark (in books, comics, films, or video games)?
AL: I do like the genetically enhanced shark that bursts out of the water in 'Deep Blue Sea' and chomps on Samuel L. Jackson in that great shock moment.
SP: What's coming next from Andrew Lane?
AL: Book #8 ('Night Break') in the Young Sherlock series, book #1 in a new series called 'The Darkness of the Stars', plus short stories in a Moriarty anthology and an 'X-Files' anthology. Plus I appear to be in early development on two different TV series. It's all go...
Andrew Lane trained as a physicist and spent 29 years providing scientific advice to the British Army and the Royal Air Force, but he has always had a parallel career as an author - a career which is now his full time occupation. He has, over the past few years, written eight books for the Young Adult market concerning a 14-year old Sherlock Holmes. He has no direct experience of sharks, but he once threw up on a dolphin. Oh, and he actually went through the same operation as he describes in his story, except that the surgeons were taking something out rather than putting it in.