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We’re back with Part II of our interview. We’ve been speaking with Robert W. Cabell, playwright and author, about his Mermaid Kingdom series. When we were setting up this interview with his publisher, Gazebo Books, Bob chimed in: “Now I can’t wait for my 20 questions,
or do I get 40 or maybe just 30?” Well, we gave him 32! Bob was a good sport about it and yesterday, we published the first 16 questions and today, we wrap up with the remaining 16.
[stextbox id=”Question” float=”true” width=”250″]If you haven’t read Part I of this interview, [intlink id=”6131″ type=”post”]go ahead and read it first[/intlink]. Don’t worry. We’ll wait for you.[/stextbox]

When we took a break from the first part of our interview, we were discussing one of the main characters, Perl, who will be the focus of her own spin-off series in the coming months. Today, we’ll learn a bit more about her as well as some of the other characters in Robert Cabell’s stories. Let’s pick up where we left off in the interview.

 

Large Q In her own way, Pearl rescues her Grandmother, Helmi, from petrification. Is there, perhaps, some greater purpose to this in the story?
Large A Yes, turning the old gods turning to stone thru apathy and sorrow is an ongoing part of the books and series.  That tends to happen in our lives, as we get older.  Apathy or fear sets in and we sit back and let the world pass us by.  That is a mistake for everyone.
Large Q Perl comes in to her birthright with as much aplomb as anyone who suddenly has gills & a tail can. Why do you think that is?
Large A Growing up, Pearl was “different” and to her, the dreams and fantasies she surrounded herself with were her real world.  Also I have known several adopted people, and they all grow up fantasizing who their “real parents” are, no matter how great their adopted parents, or “Mom & Dad” are.
Large Q Miranda is featured prominently in All the Mermaids and is the Heroine of Mermaid Christmas What can you tell us about her?
Large A Miranda is a fearless and as beautiful as the sea.  Which kind of sums up my oldest niece.
Large Q Your stories span millennia. In what way will Perl’s life be different from both her mother’s and grandmother’s.
Large A Pearl has to deal with the world of man, even more than her mother Miranda did.  Also thru the transformation of Pearl, we also finally realize the prophecy of the creation of the new race of mer-folk.  So Pearl will act as both a future ruler of that race, and an ambassador to the world of two-leggers, or humans above.  And she will deal specifically with pollution of the oceans.
Large Q Finally, there is Poseidon’s youngest daughter, Helmi. What can you say about her character?
Large A Helmi is more shy and retiring than her daughter or granddaughter, because she spent so much time alone, away from the company of others in her early centuries.  But she has the wisdom and the concept of time far beyond that of either Miranda and Pearl.  In the sequel/ prequel The Mermaid King of Krakatau which starts at the birth of Miranda, and ends at the explosion of Krakatau.
Large Q Perl and Mark seem to develop a mutual crush during the brief voyage through the Panama Canal. Does Mark feature in Perl’s future
Large A Yes, but not until the second book in the series Pearl, A Modern Day Mermaid. 
Large Q Love and friendship are two of the main themes in both books. Are there any others?
Large A Each series has its focus.

All The Mermaids In The Sea sequels /prequels to are The Mermaid King of Krakatau and Pearls of Wisdom.  They deal heavily with Greek Mythology and the Titans, and spins of the other series of books I have coming out all about the Titans and the “creator gods” of Greek Mythology and how Media became the hag.

Pearl, A Modern Day Mermaid focuses on environmental issues, young romance, and the complications of interracial species. 

The Magical Adventures of Princess Miranda focuses on great moments in history, and will have its own – “Aurthinian – Merlin” book next. 

The Aquatic Adventures of Alex and Alexandra will be more “Potterish in that is creates the alternate world of Oceanus, a city created by Poseidon that houses all the great treasures of the gods, and the adventures of young twin merfolk.

Large Q The Sea Hag – a.k.a. Media – and her surrogate represents the force of evil in your story. Can we expect any other baddies to appear?
Large A Cronos, the Hag, the scarz and the Greek family will continue to plague the mermaids with a few new creature twists.
Large Q Miranda meets an untimely end. Will she somehow return as did Helmi’s mate or will she remain a shade?
Large A That is the focal point of Pearls of Wisdom and the answer is  “yes and no”.
Large Q You have planned several series of books stemming from “All the Mermaids”. How many books in all do you envision?
Large A As many as I can write before I die.
Large Q How have All the Mermaids and Mermaid Christmas been received by both readers and critics?
Large A So far it has all been 4 and 5 stars or – “one of my favorite books of this genre” which is a gift from god to any writer.  You can’t help but break out into tears when people decide to validate your work with any kind of praise.  We write because we have to get this story down that is clawing it’s way out of our brain.  Not for money or fame.  The validation form readers is the true gold for a writer.  And when they go to websites like Goodreads or Amazon or Barnes and Nobles and post reviews, it is the greatest gift they can give to help a book take off and have a life.
Large Q What other books have you authored?
Large A

I did a book on humor called The Encyclopedia of Laugher with Joey Adams.

            The Hair-Raising Adventures of Jayms Blonde

            Blonde Jokes, Jayms Blonde Jokes a photo joke book about blondes and life in general

            All The Mermaids In The Sea

            A Mermaid Christmas Volume One of The Magical Adventures of Princess Miranda

            Pearl, A Modern Day Mermaid Volume One:  Attack of the Atomic Vampire Lamprey

            The Atomic Adventures of Alex and Alexandra Volume One:  What’s A Kraken?

            The Little Dyslexic Angel an illustrated children’s book

            The First Superstar about the life and times of the French Actress Sarah Bernhardt,

which is coming out this summer.

            The Clone Whores of Atlantis, 2048 coming out next fall.

            Chaos And The Titans coming out for Christmas of 2013

Large Q You are a playwright as well. How does the creative process for the stage compare with that for All the Mermaids?
Large A Every format you write in has some kind of “restrictions” except  – novels.  There you have total freedom to write what you want.  In a play you have to think about cast size, production costs.  In a play it is all about dialogue and interaction.  You can’t really give the “history” in a narrative except in very rare occasions.  There is no lush description of the surroundings or complex action or locations.  It is limited to live dialogue and unless you have a huge Broadway budget, a fairly limited set.

My musicals are very different.  Z – The Masked Musical of Zorro which has two productions in Germany this coming summer, is a heroic epic.  My Off-Broadway Musical Pretty Faces is about a beauty pagent for plus size women.  Act One is the week of rehearsals for the pageant, and Act Two is the Pageant, on and off stage.  Both of these have albums available on i-Tunes. 

I have a series of plays about Sarah Bernhardt and Oscar Wilde, and those are all about dialogue.

Large Q You seem to be a creative Renaissance man. Is there anything else that you’d like to be able to do?
Large A Well, I like to say I have been paid for everything and arrested for nothing.  If I hadn’t gone into theater, I would have become a marine biologist, which explains my passion for the sea.  But – I’ve been in the “Entertainment Industry” for over 40 years, and that gives you the time and opportunity to do anything you want.  And I wanted to do it all.  One by one, but try doing everything I could, and over the years I have.  I’ve directed, choreographed, designed and produced theater both regionally and in NY.  I’ve also acted and sung professionally for years, and I’ve produced albums, documentaries and short films, as wells as worked as a director, an editor and a director of photography, been the singer for a band, and soloist for orchestras.. I’ve also worked as an illustrator, created fragrances, sold paintings in galleries, been an avid gardener  As a journalist I have written for the NY Post and other papers and magazines, been a NY theater critic, worked in marketing and syndication for Television with companies like HBO and Spelling.  Basically, every time I get a chance to try something new – I take it.  I’ve been successful with most things, and failed at a few, but I have loved every chance to try something new and hope I get more and more chances as life goes on.  I am not a very savvy internet person, but the phrase “google me” works.  If you google “Robert W. Cabell” it gives you a little idea of the different things I have done.
Large Q Is your move to Seattle – one of the primary locales in All The Mermaids – a permanent one?
Large A As I said, I wrote the book seven years ago, I have no children, like my brother and sister do, so I promised my parents when they reached the age that they needed someone to take care of them, I would come home.  I’ve got that “care-giver gene”.  I have taken care of many of my friends since the 80’s as their health failed.  From Aids, to Cancer, to ALS.  Caring for someone is more than just feeding and dressing and bathing them.  You need to give them as much love and laughter as you can so when they wake up every morning, they know the day will still hold some joy for them.  So when my mom and dad called me in New York last year and asked if I would move back to care for them, I did.  I lived in Manhattan for 34 years, and now, I live in the Seattle area.    I will live here as long as my parents are with me, and when they pass, after that, I don’t know…Berlin…Hong Kong…Vancouver?
Large Q Before we wrap up, Is there anything else you’d like to mention?
Large A Just that if anyone likes the book, please tell their friends and post a comment on whatever community they are part of.  Facebook, kindle, Amazon, Goodreads, LibraryThing all of them are really helpful to authors.

[boxify box_spacing = “10” padding = “8” background_color = “#F0F8FF” background_opacity = “80” border_width = “3” border_color = “#000080” border_radius = “10” border_style = “solid” height = “150” position=”right”]Interested in what I have to say about Robert Cabell’s  mermaid books? See the reviews for:

  • [intlink id=”5328″ type=”page”]All The Mermaids In The Sea[/intlink]
  • [intlink id=”5743″ type=”page”]A Mermaid Christmas[/intlink]

[/boxify]Bob, thank you so much for taking the time play 20 32 Questions. It has been a pleasure and I hope that our readers enjoyed the interview as well. From the sound of it, I’ll be reviewing your books for some time to come.

On a personal note, I must commend you for all the time and love that you have dedicated to Care-Giving. My wife and I have spent the past 4 years looking after our elderly mothers and, therefore, we can understand the calling and the sacrifices one must make to do this sort of thing. Our best wishes go to you and your family.

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