Interview with Paleontology Author Neal Robbins
Tonight, I would like to talk with Neil Robbins, who specializes in paleontology and related fields. He authored Najimah’s Gifts to Dousares and Ilat. His forthcoming novels include Sand Beneath the Rainbow, Owl’s Topaz, Cyborgs and Greens, and others. Neal moderates World of Paleontology, Eastern Archeology, Babel, National Reptile Association, and other Yahoo forums related to paleontology and archeology. Explore Neal’s world of extinct dinosaurs and fossils, along with his literary works at www.worldofpaleontology.com.
BARBARA: I see you have a strong interest in paleontology and a background in philosophy. Do you write full time?
NEAL: I work on my fiction writing two or three hours in a day. My fiction writing is something that I do four or five days during a week.
BARBARA: I notice more fiction books and movies revolving around paleontology coming out. What do you think about the Jurassic Park series? Was it realistically done?
NEAL: From an overall perspective, the Jurassic Park series was good. There were a few inaccuracies. Tyrannosaurus Rex was not the fast runner that the Jurassic Park movies portrayed it to be. There were some dinosaurs (for example, Troodon and Velociraptor) that could run much faster than Tyrannosaur Rex.
BARBARA: How did you research your background for Najimah’s Gifts to Dousares?
NEAL: I had a strong background in Middle Eastern culture before writing Najimah’s Gifts to Dousares. I had spent time in the Middle East and had taken a lot of coursework in Middle Eastern studies at the University of Texas at Austin. I have a working knowledge of Arabic and Turkish. I have also studied Akkadian, the language of the ancient Babylonians and Assyrians. Now I am learning Avesta, which is a form of older Persian.
BARBARA: Tell me about Babel and some of the other forums.
NEAL: Babel is an all purpose intellectual forum. Malcolm Lawrence is the moderator of it. My other groups are more specialized. For example, Marine Paleontology (I am the moderator) is a paleontology group. I also moderate an archeology group called Eastern Archeology.
BARBARA: What advice would you give a new author trying to promote their books?
NEAL: My advice would be this: Use every resource that you can find to promote your books. It’s a battle where no holds are barred. Use the Internet to the fullest extent possible. The more people that you know, the better the chances are that you will be successful with your books.
BARBARA: What did you find most difficult about your works-in-progress?
NEAL: The writing itself is quite easy. The hard part is finding an illustrator. Some artists did illustrations for me in the past, but they don’t have time for it now due to other projects.
BARBARA: What did you enjoy most about the creative process?
NEAL: I enjoy the adventure of the creative process. It’s an adventure to write a novel.
BARBARA: Tell me something about the other books that will be coming out in print.
NEAL: There is one called Cosmic Icicles; it is a futuristic science fiction novel. Another is The Eyes of Lilith’s Serpent. That one has a mythological format and is set in the ancient Middle East. A sky goddess named Naila is in it.
BARBARA: Where do you see yourself five years from now (publishing)?
NEAL: I see myself as being well established as an author five years from now. I’m very optimistic about it.
BARBARA: Where may a reader order copies of your books? Are they available in E-book format?
NEAL: My books can be ordered on Amazon.com. Those are where the sales pages are located.