Last November Marissa Meyer, best known for her series the Lunar Chronicles, introduced fans to the world of Renegades. It's the first book in a trilogy about superheroes and supervillains who battle over the future of a city where morality is never as simple as good versus evil—as Nova (an Anarchist aka Insomnia) and Adrian (a Renegade alias Sketch) know all too well. Book two, Arch Enemies, will be out next November. Meyer talked about flipping the superhero script and balancing multiple projects.
What inspired you to write ‘Renegades?'
I've loved superhero stories since I was a kid. I can remember sneaking into my brother's room and stealing his X-Men comics. That was my first introduction to superheroes and this genre. I really love the vicarious nature of superheroes stories. So, when I got the idea a few years ago about writing a book with superheroes, I wanted to write a story in which a girl raised by supervillains fell in love with a boy raised by superheroes. I loved that idea of playing with their alter egos and secret identities, and what could happen when they started to uncover who they really were.
In January 2018, just two months after ‘Renegades' was published, your second graphic novel, ‘Wires and Nerve, Volume 2,' was published. Did you work on both books at the same time?
Yes. I started writing Renegades back in 2013. So I would work on it for a couple of months and then switch over and write Heartless, and then I'd work on Renegades a little bit, and then I worked on Stars Above [part of the Lunar Chronicles series published in 2016], and then Renegades, and then the Lunar Chronicles graphic novels. I'm kind of always bouncing between projects.
How do you keep all these worlds and stories straight?
Lots of file folders full of little notes and tidbits. And it's really important once I'm nearing the end of a book that I go back and reread all of the previous books in the series because there are always going to be things I forget. I make it a point to make sure I haven't contradicted myself anywhere.
‘Wires and Nerve, Volume 2' was the last book you wrote connected to the Lunar Chronicles. Is that series complete?
I think I'm done, but I've thought that I was done before. At this point I'm not working on any Lunar Chronicles books or graphic novels. But if an idea were to come to me that I was really excited for, then I would definitely be willing to pursue it.
The second book in the Renegades series, ‘Arch Enemies,' comes out in November. Is there anything that you can reveal about it?
There's going to be more of everything. All of our favorite characters will be returning and in this book, I had a lot of fun playing with Adrian, who starts to uncover more of his vigilante dreams and tries to determine who he wants to be, and how is he going to fit into this world of superheroes. At the same time, we see Nova torn even more so than she was in the first book between her Anarchist and her Renegade loyalties. So both characters are kind of being torn in different ways, which has been playing out in some really fun dialogue and some action sequences that I've really enjoyed.
Today, 11 a.m.–12:15 p.m. Marissa Meyer will be in the Autographing Area. Today, 12:30–1:30 p.m. Meyer will appear on the panel "NaNoWriMo: The Power of Writing with Abandon," in Room 1E07.