>> FEATURED AUTHORS
Jay, Summer and Dylan live for music and their bands - and are about to find themselves in the biggest battle of their lives. Because Rock War is searching for the 12 best young bands in Britain - and they are all out to win!
Bestselling author Robert Muchamore talks to us about his new series, ROCK WAR!
Q: Has music always been important for you and is that why you decided to focus on music for your new series?
A: I've always enjoyed music, but I wrote Rock War after realising how much my fans were into it too.
Q: Why did you decide to feature a contest between the bands?
A: There were more kids talking about X-Factor on my fan forum than were talking about my books!
Q: What kind of music do you enjoy?
A: I listen to pretty much everything, depending on my mood. I never listen to music while writing because it's too distracting. I only have music on if I'm doing something routine, like my accounts or answering e-mails.
Q: How much research did you need to do into the music business before you started writing this?
A: I had to look into some aspects of the music business, but the level of research needed for Rock War is much lower than for one of my Henderson's Boys historical novels.
Q: If you had your own band, what would you call it and what kind of music would you play?
A: Err... I haven't got a clue to be honest. Maybe rock or something!
Q: Your bands come from different backgrounds - very privileged and very deprived. Does this reflect the real world of music?
A: I wanted the bands to be as different as possible. It would be pretty dull if all the characters were the same. I think anyone can flourish, but it's definitely easier if your dad's a millionaire and he sends you to Eton!
Q: You have several different lead characters in the book. Did you write their stories separately, and then bring them together?
A: No, I always write in the order the chapters appear in the book, because it's very important to build tension in all the right places. For instance, you leave a hook at the end of the chapter, and then keep the reader in suspense by switching to a more mundane scene from another story thread!
Q: Do you have a favourite band in your story? Do you know who's going to win?!
A: I know who's going to win, in terms of fame and success. But hopefully, when kids get to the end of the four Rock War books, they'll also be made to think whether fame and success is what truly makes you happy.
Q: How will the series pan out, how many books are you planning to write in the series?
A: The plan is for four books. Book one is about how all the bands form and enter Rock War. Book's two and three are going to be about the competition itself, and book four will focus on the aftermath.
Q: Are you planning to write any 'spin off' stories from the central series?
A: The first book is only just out, so it's a bit early to speculate. I suppose if the series was really successful and I thought of a good idea I might do a spin off. But that's something I'll think about in 2016, at the earliest!
Q: How different a process was it for you to write this compared to writing your Cherub books?
A: There's not much difference. Henderson's Boys was different because of the historical setting, but Rock War and CHERUB are more or less the same.
Q: Will you be returning to you child spies in CHERUB any time soon?
A: There will be a new CHERUB book, Lone Wolf, out in August, and another in 2016.
Q: How does your writing day go?
A: Boringly, I try and work a standard 9-5 kind of day.