Chris Morphew is the author of the action-packed Phoenix Files series, about a group of teenagers who have 100 days to stop the world from ending, and he’s also one of the authors who write the Zac Power series (under the name H I Larry) . I got the chance to ask Chris a few questions when he came to Christchurch last year.
What is it like to be one of the authors of the Zac Power series?
It’s pretty cool! Whenever I visit a school and ask how many kids have read a Zac Power book, I’m always amazed at how many hands go up!
What’s your favourite Zac Power gadget?
I think Zac’s Turbo Boots in Volcanic Panic are pretty awesome. Jetpack shoes powerful enough to blast someone out of a volcano? That sounds pretty good to me!
Zac Power books written by Chris Morphew
What inspired you to write your action-packed Phoenix Files series?
This might sound a bit morbid, but one of the biggest things I want to do with The Phoenix Files is tell a story about hardship and suffering. I want to be really honest about the darkness and brokenness of the world. But I don’t want to stop there. I want to suggest that the darkness and the brokenness isn’t all there is, and that maybe there’s a bigger story being told that makes the bad parts worthwhile in the end.
In The Phoenix Files Luke, Peter and Jordan learn that there is only 100 days until the end of the world. What would you do if you knew you only had 100 days left to live?
I would pray a lot. And then maybe see if I could find a super-powered homeless man to tell me what was really going on.
What was the book you loved most as a child?
That’s a tough one! There are so many!
Fiction: The Narnia series, Animorphs, Where the Wild Things Are…
Non-fiction: The Bible and books about dinosaurs.
Who is your favourite author/children’s author?
It’s a toss-up between C.S. Lewis and J.K. Rowling.
Why did you want to be a writer?
Because I love telling stories! I think fictional stories have incredible power to help us understand the real world in new ways.
What’s the best thing and worst thing about being a writer?
The best thing is having the opportunity to explore interesting ideas. The worst thing is usually my next deadline. I write pretty slowly, and sometimes it’s hard to keep up!
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Write about things that matter. If you care about your story, then other people are far more likely to care about it too.