1. Raymond Benson On Writing James Bond, Splinter Cell & More

    By Devin Zydel on 2007-03-09

    A new webcast interview with Raymond Benson, the author of six James Bond continuation novels and three novelizations, has appeared online at Writer’s Webcast.

    To listen to the webcast, click here and scroll to the 28 February 2007 link (author Robert Goldsborough is also featured in this webcast) to download and listen.

    Benson explains how researching for the book The James Bond Bedside Companion led him to England where he met several members of the Ian Fleming family as well as his business representatives, whom he got on really well with. ‘I wanted a book about everything,’ he says regarding the reason for writing the Companion. ‘Ian Fleming’s life, the books, the movies, everything you wanted to know about James Bond.’

    On the topic of becoming the new 007 author, Benson says: ‘The author who was writing James Bond before me, John Gardner, had announced his retirement. So, out of the blue, the Fleming estate phoned me and said ‘we think you’re the guy who could write a James Bond novel, would you like to do it?’

    ‘I had to reinvent myself,’ says Benson when discussing the move from the Bond novels to his own original stories, such as Face Blind and Sweetie’s Diamonds. ‘The three suspense novels I do are more in the Hitchcock vein; they’re more about ordinary people who get caught up in extraordinary circumstances … it’s the kind of suspense I like.’

    Benson also mentions how writing the novelizations for three Bond films possibly led to him being recommended for the Tom Clancy Splinter Cell novels, which he wrote under the pseudonym of David Michaels. ‘Ironically, those two Splinter Cell novels are my only two New York Times bestsellers, and my name’s not on them,’ he says with a laugh.

    As for the future? ‘I’m continuing on with my own stuff. In 2006, I wrote two novels and three screenplays and the novels are now circulating amongst publishers.’

    Click here to listen to the entire webcast for more details including his work on role-playing games, the writing process, and much more.

    Stay tuned to CBn for all the latest literary James Bond news.

    Read The Raymond Benson CBn Interview.