Crimson Head Elder exclusive interview with S.D. Perry, Capcom's official author for the Resident Evil games narratives. Foreword by site administrator & interviewer CrimsonElder.
I will begin this interview with a brief introduction to S.D. Perry and how the interview came into being. Stephani, or Danelle as she prefers to be known is an American novelist, daughter of Steve Perry, also an established author working on such popular franchises as Star Wars, Aliens, Predator, and Indiana Jones. Danelle is no stranger to popular franchise herself having worked on our beloved Resident Evil, Star Trek and like her father before her, Aliens and Predator. Danelle has not only worked on original novels but also movie novelizations too; you will read in this interview how she started to work with Capcom in 1998. She wrote two Resident Evil novels that year, followed by two in 1999, then one in 2000, 2001 and her last novel in 2004. Equalling up to seven books in seven years, five based on the series narrative, and two original stories but still based in the Resident Evil universe.
A few years after playing Remake I read through all of these books, as a serious and passionate fan of the series and its official canon. Having not liked the Paul Anderson films for their poor scripts and detrimental deviations from the canon narrative, I thoroughly enjoyed the novels of S.D. Perry, and still do. I was always fascinated by who wrote these novels, the approach the author took to constructing the narrative and Capcom's level of interaction. So I decided to message Danelle via Twitter (@sdp668), she was very open and enthusiastic to share her Capcom experience with the series' fans of the series, answering questions posed by readers of her novels, as posted at our Survival Horror community Forum. Danelle has been a great friend to Crimson Head Elder, taking her free time to answer all submitted questions, even becoming a resident of Crimson Head Elder. Please visit her profile SDP to pass on your own personal message of gratitude; there is also an Interview Thread for posting feedback.
CHE: I see that there is a three year gap between your Resident Evil Code: Veronica and Resident Evil Zero novelisations. Any particular reason why? Furthermore what made you decide to continue with the novels, what made you gravitate to the Resident Evil Zero narrative?
SPD: I have mostly done contract work throughout my career, writing tie-ins and novelisations. Someone hires me to write about or for a franchise/shared universe. When Simon & Schuster held the publishing license for Resident Evil they decided when to release the books and which games to have me write about.
CHE: Umbrella's conspiracy revolves around the events that take place during the PS1 original Resident Evil. Four years later Capcom remade the game and added elements such as environments, story, characters and new B.O.Ws. Did you ever consider rewriting Umbrella Conspiracy? Assuming you have played Resident Evil Remake 2002, do you like the new elements and how do you feel this new version would have changed the way you wrote the book.
SDP: I haven't played the remake, sorry!
CHE: I can't help but notice that you have written several books in the horror genre including Resident Evil, Aliens and Summer Man. Is this something that you choose to pressure personally? If yes then what inspired you too write in the horror genre? Do you enjoy horror movies? Did any specific ones inspire you?
SDP: I'm not just a horror fan, I'm a horror nerd! I read 'The Shining' when I was ten and fell in love with the genre. I read mostly Horror, Gothic to modern day, and I love horror movies, from subtle artsy scary, to total gore-fest. Even the really bad ones sometimes have a decent creepy moment, and I will sit through a lot to get to one of those moments. My all-time favorite horror flick is probably John Carpenter's 'The Thing'. The effects are pretty dated now, but I first saw it in my teens and it blew my mind. Isolation, paranoia, insanity; I love those themes, in movies and literature.
CHE: What was the process for creating the covers for the original books? Umbrella Conspiracy is without a doubt my favourite cover. It breathes atmosphere and everything I love about Resident Evil. Who helped you create the covers and how much input did you have?
SDP: My editor for Resident Evil, Marco Palmieri, oversaw the CG covers. He was a fan of the first game, the only one out when I was hired to write the first books, and novelizing the games were his idea. I wrote the books, but he was the mastermind behind the whole thing. I liked the covers, too, but had no input.
CHE: What is your favourite cover art for these novels?
SDP: Hmm. I don't know that I have a favourite. The first one was pretty good.
CHE: Is there any particular reason for the new covers?
SDP: Yes, but to explain it will take a super brief lesson on the work that I did for Resident Evil, and the nature of contract work in general. A publishing company sees something they'd like to put out a book on, a game, a TV show, whatever, and basically leases the rights to that product/idea for a brief period, for one or more projects. That company then hires a writer to make their project or projects happen. Usually someone who has already worked in shared universes, and can write quickly, without too much editing. The contract that the writer signs is usually for a flat fee, little or no royalties, and the writer doesn't get any rights to the material; they're selling their writing skills, period, and once the project is over, they have no say in what happens to what they've written, because someone else owns it. A few years ago, Titan books did a deal with Capcom, I'm assuming, and re-released the books with new covers. I had no idea they were even out until a guy on my Facebook feed mentioned it. It was cool to point them out to my kids in the grocery store, "Mommy wrote this", but I had nothing to do with it. No money, no input, no notification.
CHE: I can't help but notice that City of the Dead is you're longest book and by a significant number of pages (Usually around 100 pages longer). Was this because of the fact that it follows both Claire and Leon? Did this make a more difficult book for you to write?
SDP: Yes and yes!
CHE: When reading Nemesis I couldn't help but notice that Nicholai comes across as a very intense and cruel character. He is much more sinister than in the games especially in terms of dialogue. Did you get the feeling from the games that his character should play out more this way? Or is there another reason for this?
SDP: No particular reason. I like my bad guys really bad, I guess. Truthfully, I barely remember most of the characters past the first couple of games. I was a fan, but not a mega-fan, and I was on tight deadlines, and I wrote the books 15-20 years ago; the games and the books sort of blended together after a while.
CHE: Capcom are not really known for including romance into their projects. Did you feel like whilst you were writing the novels that you would like to possibly go down the romance route with any particular characters?
SDP: When I write, I imagine all kinds of stuff, but my editor gave me pretty clear instructions for these books, try for the feel of the game, lots of zombie-killing action, and minimal use of the F-word. We never talked seriously about putting in any romance past what was in the games.
CHE: Were there characters that you can recall survived, who you wished hadn't or thought would have helped the story if they had died. Furthermore, were there any characters who you knew had to die, but you enjoyed including them in the narrative so much so you wish you didn't have to kill them off?
SDP: Yes, though I totally can't remember many of the character names. Like I said, long time ago. I seem to remember being bummed when Steve Burnside died in the book, but it was still fun to write about; I loved watching him die in the game.
CHE: Have you seen any particular game that you thought 'I would love to write a novel about this one'?
SDP: Games in general? Sure. Silent Hill. I think it's been done by somebody else, though.
CHE: Yes, by author Sadamu Yamashita. Were you aware that Capcom have taken some elements from your books? Such as Barry's wife being named Kathy was first used in your novels. As well as Chris and Claire's parents dying in a car crash which was introduced into the games in 2015 with the release of Resident Evil Revelations 2. How does it make you feel that these novels written over a decade ago, still influence a multi-national company such as Capcom when they construct a new Resident Evil game narrative?
SDP: Nope, I had no idea. How does it feel? Er... good... it's weird. You have to understand, I had no idea that these books would be particularly popular. I wrote each one in about a month, up all night, jacked on nicotine and grape soda. I was a newbie writer and made newbie writer mistakes. I'll never fully live down that I didn't know my weapons very well, or the difference between a clip and a magazine. I'm slightly shocked that anyone even remembers them, let alone considers them inspirational. Or even canonical.
CHE: How did Capcom find and contact you to commission these stories? Or did you approach them?
SDP: I had no direct contact with Capcom! My only contact was my editor at S&S, Marco Palmieri. He was looking for a contract writer to do these books, and got hold of my father, Steve Perry, my dad's a very good and well respected write-for-hire guy, but my dad was busy, so he gave Marco my name. I'd already had a few tie-ins and a movie novelization published, and was a fan of the game; Marco read one of my Aliens books and then offered me the contract.
CHE: Did Capcom provide you with much information to use and develop, or did they rely on you to fill in the gaps in the narrative?
SDP: When I did the outline for the first book my editor asked me to put in some sinister history for the mansion, like, who built it, and why it was so mysterious. He also came up with the stuff about Jill being an ex-burglar. Capcom read the outline and told Marco that they already had a history for the house, and to leave it out. When the second game came out, they sent me some images of the characters. I think I got a few more character drawings for two of the other games. That was all of the input I got from Capcom ever.
CHE: Did you expect the hardcore fans of the series to be welcoming, even excited about the novels?
SDP: I had no real expectations. I hoped they would do well, but had no idea if the fans would like them.
CHE: What was the inspiration that kept you writing these books, and if you suffered any episodes of writers block what did you attempt to overcome this?
SDP: I'm sure this will sound crass, but I was hired to write these, and had specific deadlines to meet. In contract work, you get paid some money up front, and more when you turn in the project. I had writer's block a number of times, but at the end of the day, I couldn't afford to blow deadlines. There were bills to pay. Sometimes that meant just sitting down and forcing myself to get into the story.
CHE: Do you have any lines of communication with Capcom to this day?
SDP: No. My editor gave me the impression that Capcom didn't really like the books, but I never heard why.
CHE: What is your opinion of the direction the game narrative took, after your contribution?
SDP: I actually don't know. I rarely have time to play anything anymore. I write contract stuff and my own books and work at my kids' school as a lunch lady and other life things. The time investment that one of these big games takes is totally beyond my scope these days.
CHE: Are you still a fan of the series?
SDP: I'm a fan of the games I played, but I haven't played in a long time. Just recently, I plugged in the first game and was shocked to learn that my reflexes suck these days. I died in the dog hallway, like ten minutes in. Embarrassing, considering I used to be able to run through the game in under two hours.
CHE: Are you aware that the translations of your books are not very accurate?
SDP: I wasn't aware.
CHE: It has been said you received exclusive Japanese information from Capcom to help write the novels. If so, how much of it did you rely on as a source, and are you still in possession of such material?
SDP: I just got some character images, and an article about the game's creator; nothing else.
CHE: Do you like the covers of the reprints of your books?
SDP: Sure. I've only seen them online, well a couple at the grocery store and they looked nice.
CHE: What would Trent's views be on the current state of a world of Bioterrorism as depicted in the game narratives proceeding your final novel?
SDP: I haven't seen the later games, but Trent would always be looking for a way to manipulate things to his advantage, losing battles to win wars.
CHE: Your novels have attracted some criticism for plot holes and errors, due to lack of knowledge of the direction the story was going to take, and direction from Capcom. Given the opportunity, with hindsight would you rewrite any of your novels to coincide with the later games and the new information contained therein.
SDP: I have no doubt there are lots of plot holes and errors. In the later books, I put in a kind of disclaimer, explaining that mistakes were inevitable, considering the game makers/movie people/writers weren't in contact. I got no direction from Capcom and wasn't consulted or warned about anything I was writing whether or not it would contradict what they were up to. At the time I remember being frustrated when a new game would come out, blowing holes in the stories I had already written, but rewrites weren't being suggested or offered. Since Resident Evil is licensed material, someone would have to hire me to rewrite them before I could touch anything.
CHE: Are you aware that the Japanese versions of your novels have illustrations of the characters? What is your opinion on these drawings?
SDP: Sorry, wasn't aware!
CHE: Would you be interested in authoring further Resident Evil novels? Be it a standalone narrative, or a novelization of a new game release.
SDP: Absolutely. They were fun to write.
CHE: Who was your favourite character to explore?
SDP: Probably Rebecca. I also liked Ada Wong. And Carlos. And all of the villains!
CHE: Out of the characters you created who was your favourite?
SDP: Jeez! I don't remember! Karen, from Caliban Cove, maybe. Because she ate someones face!
CHE: Did you have ideas for future Resident Evil novels that never saw the light of day? If so can you provide our residents with some details?
SDP: Honestly, I don?t think I can even mention any ideas, without infringing on Capcom's property rights. Sorry!
CHE: Were any ideas or material cut from the books, such as plot, characters, B.O.Ws?
SDP: My editor cut some of my language; I have a foul mouth!
CHE: What is your favourite B.O.W?
SDP: Hmm. The Licker from the second game. Dig that crazy tongue!
CHE: Holden was Wesker's contact in Umbrella. He is mentioned in the Marvel comic, Wildstorm comics, and the unused Romero Script. Were you given any information on this character from Capcom, were you even aware of his existence?
SDP: No, I didn't know.
CHE: What was the reasoning behind placing Raccoon City in Pennsylvania?
SDP: I don't actually remember. I think it was my editor?s idea, but he might have gotten it from Capcom.
CHE: In your first novel, you made reference to the Japanese novel 'The True Story Behind BIO HAZARD'. Was it your choice to make this inclusion, or did Capcom make this request?
SDP: My editor must have asked me to put it in. I tried not to reference stuff I didn?t know about.
CHE: Have you had the opportunity to read George Romero's rejected screenplay, written for his canned Resident Evil film?
SDP: No. I heard he might be getting involved, and was totally psyched to think he might have read one of my books. The Living Dead movies (Night, Dawn, Day) are classics, but I had no personal connection to the movies, in any way. I'd like to read it though, I'm a fan!
CHE: What do you think of the reported quote by Paul W.S. Anderson, that your novels are not faithful. Leaving aside the universal appalling scripts, dialogue & production levels across every one of his Resident Evil films, how very ironic when his critically panned movies fail to follow accurately a single element of the game narrative (much to the displeasure of by far the majority of Resident Evil fans). Notwithstanding his unfounded, ignorant criticism of your novels, he brazenly appropriated elements of your books! Examples of this include the armed & intelligent zombies, taken from your novel 'Caliban Cove', and the laboratories and test areas for B.O.Ws, taken from your novel 'Underworld'. How do you feel about this?
SDP: Huh! I didn't know he'd ever looked at the books. I don't really have an opinion, I guess. Nowadays, there's a lot more co-ordination in shared universes, but canon used to not be such a big deal, particularly for a new property.
CHE: As fans of another Survival Horror series, Alien, do you have plans to do a sequel to the book Aliens: Labyrinth? Or even another book in the Alien universe?
SDP: Last year, I wrote the text for a book called 'The Weyland-Yutani Report', that came out in a limited collector's edition, from Insight Editions. I think they'll do a general release in the next year or so, I don't actually know, but it was cool to play around in the Alien universe again. Like I may have mentioned earlier, contract writers have to be hired by the property/license owner, and it's an invitation-only kind of situation.
CHE: Why did you focus a great deal of attention on Rebecca Chambers in your novels, especially the first? Did Capcom ask you specifically to include this character? If so, what was the reasoning behind this decision? Or was it due to your own personal interest in Rebecca, perhaps she was she your favourite character? Or was it because you felt she had a potential you wanted to develop further than the games were providing for the character?
SDP: The first contract was for four books, two based on the first two games, two original. My editor suggested that I pick a minor character from the first game to write about in the first original book, which was set to come out before the second game was released. I picked Rebecca because she wasn't a major character, and she didn't die in the first game. I had no idea she would eventually become a major character for Capcom.
CHE: If you were given the opportunity to write a new original (and possibly canon) narrative for one of the more recent characters, deceased or alive, who would it be and why? If you haven't been following the series recently are there any old characters you wanted to explore further?
SDP: I'm sorry, I haven?t followed the series. Wesker would be fun, wouldn't he?
CHE: Have you seen the canon Resident Evil films, CGI movies titled Resident Evil Degeneration, and Resident Evil Damnation? If so, what did you think of them? Would you have liked to see one of your original novels in film format?
SDP: I saw part of the first theatrical movie, once; other than that, I haven't seen any of the adaptations/films. I only wrote two original ones, 'Caliban Cove' and 'Underworld'; would I see a movie based on one of them? I don't know. I'm kind of a weird person, I write books and send them out and don't usually think about them again, or read them, or watch the movies. I'm a fan of writing more than I am what I'm writing about, if that makes sense. I mean, I get into whatever I'm working on, but that's part of my job. Embracing what the fans dig, to get it the way that they do; it's like I'm hired to be a professional fan, and write what I like about a property. Even the really cool stuff, I tend to set it aside once I'm done with a project because I have something else I have to get interested in, professionally.
CHE: Which book in the series did you enjoy writing the most?
SDP: Probably the second game adaptation, 'City of the Dead'. I'd already written a couple of books so I wasn't afraid of the process anymore, and I loved that game. I also liked Nemesis, for the pursuer/Mr. X.
CHE: Which book proved to be the most challenging creatively?
SDP: 'Umbrella Conspiracy'. Because there weren't a lot of game adaptations out, and I hadn't read any, so I was pretty much guessing how to turn a game into a book. I played the first Resident Evil about a billion times, trying to get the feel of the game and memorize all of the elements, but I was twenty-something. I just kind of made the format up.
CHE: Has Capcom asked if you could write more novels based on the recent games?
CHE: Have you seen any of the Resident Evil movies? Did you enjoy them and which ones are your favourites?
SDP: I haven't, sorry, except for part of the first one. I liked the lasers-in-the-hall trap, but that's all I actually remember.
CHE: Did Capcom restrict you from covering anything in your novel or did you have a lot of control?
SDP: Capcom only told me not to write about the history of the mansion, in the first novelisation. Other than that, decisions were made by my editor or by me.
CHE: You have authored novels from within the Resident Evil, Star Trek and Alien universes. What is your preferred to write for and why?
SDP: Interesting question, but one that I can't really answer. When I'm actively working in a universe, that's my favorite universe. I've liked working in all of them.
CHE: What do you think about the canon issue?
SDP: I don't know that I'm qualified to address the issue. My editor pretty much said, "Just make it fun", and that's what I tried to do. When I was hired only the first game was out, so I stuck to the game as much as I could, but canon wasn't a thing. I guess I wish that Capcom had given me some direction, so I could have adjusted accordingly, but they were a giant company and I was just a write-for-hire doing a few books for an American publisher; I doubt I was on their radar at all. Now, people occasionally find it necessary to point out that I contradicted myself, the games, etc., but it was kind of unavoidable at the time. If people enjoyed the books, that's cool, and if the lack of continuity made them hate the books, that's cool, too. To each his or her own.
CHE: Were you intimidated when you first undertook to write for Capcom and their hugely popular, globally beloved series?
SDP: Yup! I'd done a couple of graphic novel adaptations, and one movie script, but I was still a noob. I loved the first game. I was only about halfway through when I was contacted about writing the books and tried to do it justice, but I really didn't know what I was doing.
CHE: Do you feel that some negative feedback in this debate have been silenced by the recent inclusion into the canon of two of your own book inventions.
SDP: I know there's a debate, but I'm not involved in it. I may have mentioned, I'm kind of weird; I have social anxiety issues, among others, so I try to avoid reading reviews. I'll see ten nice ones, then one that says I suck, and that one review will stick in my brain and keep me up nights. I know some people don't like the books, but there's no way that any writer is going to make all of the fans happy, all of the time, so I just kind of stay out of it. I do my thing and try not to get into debates over stuff I can't control.
CHE: You wrote two original Resident Evil novels, independent from the game narratives; was it more enjoyable to write a unique story for this universe, affording more creative freedom?
SDP: Yes and no. It was a little harder, because I didn't have a clear blueprint, but I also got to come up with environments and new characters and monsters, which was cool.
CHE: Did you ask Capcom if Nicholai died in the game?
SDP: No. They got copied in on all of my outlines and first drafts, and didn't offer direction about anything.
CHE: What was the end game plan for Trent? Would he have brought down Umbrella?
SDP: Trent was my editor?s idea. He wanted a mysterious character with unknown motivations to stir things up a little, and be a common thread throughout the novelisations. Would he have brought down Umbrella? I think yes, but there was no ultimate end game when I put him in.
CHE: What is your favourite book to read?
SDP: I re-read Hell House by Richard Matheson every Christmas. I've read several Stephen King books more than once, and most of Lovecraft multiple times. I just like to read, and horror is my favorite.
CHE: What inspired you to become a writer?
SDP: I don't really have any other marketable skills! Also, my dad is a writer, so I knew it was a real job that was really within reach, at an early age. I started writing stories and journals and stuff as a tween, and always got positive feedback from my parents. For a while I wanted to be a poet, and my father kindly pointed out that making a living as a poet would be super difficult. Most writers aren't wealthy, and have day jobs, by the way, but I just love to write, it makes me feel good about myself, so I keep doing it.
CHE: How do you relax after a hard day of writing?
SDP: I have a part-time day job during the week that requires I get up early (well, early for me, 7am), so I usually do that and then go home and nap. I get up after a few hours, hang with the fam (married for twenty years this Halloween to an awesome dude, with two excellent boys, aged 11 & 13), make dinner, do my relaxing things. Then I write, and am usually up into the small hours. Weekends I sleep in and try to catch up on chores. I don't write every day, though, sometimes just a few times a week. Depends on if I have a deadline, and how soon it is. To relax, I read a lot, and can kill a book in a day or so. I watch movies with my husband, or binge-watch seasons of things on my Kindle (I just watched all of Hannibal last week and totally, guiltily enjoyed it), or play simple video games, usually puzzles (Quell, The Room, that kind of thing). I ingest relaxing substances occasionally, which is legal in my state. About every other week, I go out with a girlfriend for cocktails. Basic old lady type stuff, but I don't garden and I am generally anti-social, deeply introverted.
CHE: Much of the narratives of your game based novels seem to focus heavily on the original game scripts before they were edited and finalised. Was it a challenge working from these early scripts?
SDP: I didn't have any scripts. I either played the game or used a game guide.
CHE: In the first Resident Evil novel you wrote Wesker's death scene the same way he died in the obscure Sega Saturn version of the game. Was this intentional because fans wouldn't expect it?
SDP: No. I don't even remember what version I played, but I know we had a Sega Saturn back then. I tried to write what I played.
CHE: You have adapted movies into novels too. Are there any differences between adapting a film and adapting a game to the novel format?
SDP: In general, I don't know. The only games I've novelised were Resident Evil, but for me, it was very different. The movie novelisations were actually written from scripts. Basically, you take 120 pages of screenplay and try to turn it into 300 pages of book. I didn't have a script for any of the games, I just played a lot. After the first two, I also used the game guides.
CHE: The thing most fans of the novels love is how you fleshed out the characters, especially minor ones like Joseph Frost, Forest Speyer and Kenneth J. Sullivan who never had a lot of screen time as living beings in the original games. Do you recall how and why you decided to portray some of them like you did? For example you portrayed Joseph Frost as the team wise ass who always picked on Brad Vickers for his cowardice.
SDP: Thanks! But I don't recall, I'm sorry. I made stuff up because I had to say something about them, because books need characters that seem real.
CHE: One of the most frustrating things about the novels is the continuity errors from one novel to the next in the game based books. The continuity errors seemed to get worse as the series progressed. Do you blame Capcom for not giving you the final draft of their finished game scripts to work from for these errors?
SDP: I mentioned earlier, the continuity errors were pretty much beyond my control. I only ever got feedback once from Capcom, for one aspect of my first outline - history for the mansion. My editor dealt with them directly, but I never met or corresponded with anyone from the company. Do I blame them? No. I mean, if they'd told me what the games were going to be about, I would have changed stuff, but again, they were a big company and I don't think anyone thought the books would be so popular. I don't blame them for not being more interested in what was, to them, probably not a big deal.
CHE: You write villains especially well, and as heinous as their actions are you manage to make them likeable. Do you have a particular favourite villain from the series?
SDP: Thank you! I like writing for villains. I like humanising them, and I?m interested in how people can compartmentalise things, to make themselves NOT the villain in any given situation. I remember liking Birkin in the second game, and of course, Wesker was pretty classic.
CHE: Where did that infamous Wesker moment come from; the line "I've got a hard-on like you wouldn't believe"? That's caused much controversy amongst the community!
SDP: I had no idea there was controversy! I made it up, because I thought it would make him seem more bad-ass!
CHE: How did it feel to write the story about such a popular franchise? Or in other words, how did it feel to bring life through words on a page to something that people used to seeing visually?
SDP: Resident Evil was popular, but remember, only the first game had come out when I was initially hired. I was young and didn't yet recognize the limits of my writing abilities, so I just kind of went for it. I wasn't really thinking about the fans, I was thinking about making my boss happy. It was cool, though, to be hired to play video games and then write about them. I bragged on it a little to my friends.
CHE: Several years ago prior to the reprinting of the novels there were rumours circling the internet that you had been working on a Resident Evil 4 novel. Is there any truth to this?
SDP: Nope. In about 2009, I was contacted by another company about possibly writing more books based on the games past Zero, but they ended up not getting approval from Capcom and nothing was ever signed.
CHE: What did you have planned with the Trent story-line? He is definitely one of the more intriguing characters?
SDP: Trent was my editor's invention. Marco was an X-Files fan, and wanted to see a character like the cigarette-smoking man from the series; a mysterious high-level player with unclear intentions. We never actually discussed a final design, but my own personal belief was that Trent was lying to everyone in order to promote what he really wanted - the total obliteration of Umbrella.
CHE: How many more original novels did you have planned?
SDP: I was only contracted for two, so I only came up with two.
CHE: What inspired the story-line for Caliban Cove?
SDP: I was supposed to write a book kind of like the first game, with a minor character from that game. I picked Rebecca because she seemed obvious and I liked the idea of a super-young genius girl, and then added in all of the Resident Evil elements that I was drawn to; an isolated location, a solid bad guy from an evil corporation, puzzles, a team of unprepared soldiers, and monsters and zombies created by the t-Virus. In other words, I used the tropes but tried to make up a new story. It was just an idea; I pitched it to my editor and he said go for it.
Thank you, everyone, for your questions. I know I didn't answer everybody, but I hope I touched on the major themes and was at least slightly not-boring. I'm humbled by the ongoing interest in stuff I wrote way back when, and if you enjoyed the books, even if just to bitch about them, then I did my job, and am proud to have done so. I was lucky to be invited into the universe and lucky to have had a smart, creative editor, and I'm especially lucky that people like you care about what I did, for whatever reason. It means a lot to me that I was able to connect with people, or at least make readers happy for a few hours. Thanks again!