Literaturschock: Mr Foster, if you look in the mirror and into your own soul, what would you see?

Alan Dean Foster: Someone full of questions to which he knows he will never get the answers.

Literaturschock: I know, you are asked almost every question again and again but is there any question you are never asked, but you wish people would ask you?

Alan Dean Foster: Why bother worrying about the future, when you'll be dead within half a century? Answer: Beyond my own self, I feel a personal responsibility to my species.

Literaturschock: If you would have a time machine like H.G. Wells' to which time(s) and place(s) you would travel and what would you you do there?

Alan Dean Foster: Cambrian Period, to see trilobites. Mesozoic, for the dinosaurs. Renaissance Florence, to meet da Vinci. The time of the American Revolution, to meet and chat with Washington, Jefferson, and especially Franklin. Early 19th-century Wien, to meet Beethoven and attend the premiere of his symphonies. And much, much, more. I'd do exactly the same things I do today: have a look around, and chat with interesting people.

Literaturschock: You are an enthusiastic traveller and so you visited many places all around the globe. What fascinates you in such a way at the travel and is there any special place, which is sitting deeply in your heart? (Why?)

Alan Dean Foster: I'd like to travel the universe, but I can only do it in my writing (though I get to take people with me). Stuck on this one planet, I want to see as much of it as I can. I have a bottomless appetite for knowledge. As to one place, I would have to say Papua New Guinea. Unmatched beauty and fascination both above and below the water.

Literaturschock: I suppose, you are very interested in our environment. Do you have a (perhaps crazy or absurdly) vision, how every one of us could protect the environment better?

Alan Dean Foster: Individually, it is important to educate people who do not intentionally damage the environment, but who are simply unaware of the damage they cause. That means using reason and logic to persuade them, not curses and marches.

Literaturschock: Imagine Spellsinger Novels would be translated onto the screen and you have to chose the crew. Who would be Jon-Tom?

Alan Dean Foster: Probably a young, unknown singer would be best. But Eminem would make a very interesting Jon-Tom. And Rammstein could sing for the Plated Folk.

Literaturschock: What is the thing, that makes a book to a very special book for you? And/or what makes a book (of another author) for you importantly? Does it have to contain a message? Or just have to amuse you?

Alan Dean Foster: For me to get interested in fiction by another author they have to surprise me. After so many years of writing, it's very difficult to surprise me either with style or content.

Literaturschock: What do you think is the most difficult and the easiest thing about writing?

Alan Dean Foster: The most difficult is simply doing it on a regular basis. If you sit around waiting for inspiration, you will never become a professional writer. The easiest thing...there are no easy things about writing. It's slow, difficult, painful work. Schreiben ist arbeit, und ist immer schwer.

Literaturschock: Who are some of your favorite writers, and do you find the time to read them? What are you currently reading?

Alan Dean Foster: I read mostly non-fiction. Recently read Sebag Montifiore's biography of Potemkin, Throwem Way Leg by Tim Flannery, and a big illustrated history Search for the Nile.

Literaturschock: Thank you very much for your time, Mr Foster! Many greetings from the Black Forest!

Alan Dean Foster: Bitte schoen, Alan F

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