Q&A with Author Weiqi Wang on:
THE CONTINUED QUEST TO MAKE MAGIC AND SCIENCE COMPATIBLE WITH THIRD BOOK OF ACCLAIMED YOUNG ADULT SERIES
Question: How would you define this genre that you invented for Code of Rainbow and why is it important to differentiate this from your typical sci-fi series?
Weiqi Wang: This series is a pioneer to construct a magic world based on physical scientific theories. I call this potential new genre Sci-M-Fi, or SMF. This is the first attempt that I ever heard of, worldwide, that tries to bridge magic with realistic, physical science. My scientific background and understanding in scientific disciplines, including but not limited to the theory of time and space, origination of the universe and quantum physics are the keys to my world-building in this series. By the end of the series, readers will see how the magic in this world, although looking very similar to “traditional” magic concepts, can be explained by the underlying physical scientific theories from our real world. As such, this series will smoothly transform its genre from magic fantasy to sci-fi. That’s why I call it Sci-M-Fi.
Q: Did your scientific and philosophy background play a role in creating Sci-M-Fi?
WW: I’m a scientist and an engineer, plus I’d like to see myself as a philosopher, too. I couldn’t stop thinking about extreme philosophical questions since I was little, such as how the universe exists. So, my style is open-minded and borderless imagination, plus humor when it fits, and I’m brave enough to try to bridge magic with physical science. If we think about it, the concept of “magic” originated from the observation of something that we cannot explain, something deemed supernatural, which does not mean it’s not scientific. If I wasn’t a scientist and hadn’t been thinking critically about philosophical questions such as the origin of the universe, I wouldn’t be able to build the world in this series.
Q: Another big theme present throughout the series is the mistreatment of animals, or “magimals”. Why was this an important issue for you to highlight?
WW: Not everybody knows the epidemic of abuse and torture to animals, whether it’s for fun or for business. The fur coat business, as a typical example, sometimes demands live skin peeling to get fresh furs so that the coats can be sold at a higher price. Countless animals therefore suffered un-imaginable, appalling pain from live skin peeling, and I’ve seen many videos on that. It just drove me utterly mad, but it seems to me that very few people are aware of this and, surprisingly, many don’t care even after getting informed. It’s just so wrong. I want to raise awareness on that.
Q: What message do you hope to get across by showcasing these issues?
I want my readers, especially the younger ones, to be aware of this kind of issues and get educated in the right direction. Animals and humans are both lives. Treating them with love is one of the most basic and fundamental disciplines and deeds of goodness. We also need to protect environment and treasure all kinds of resources. Appreciate and maintain the era of peace as of now. This world doesn’t owe us peace; we need to maintain it by ourselves.
Q: So, do you think real magic is out there?
WW: I think people should be open-minded and embrace creative thinking when it comes to the concept of “magic.” It originates from describing un-explainable phenomena, which might be due to under-development of science. Magic and science may not be opposite to each other, they are just two concepts or philosophies. So, I would say to readers to try to be open about the idea of magic. Anything is possible.
WEIQI WANG’s goal as a writer is to connect the scientific world with elements of magic. He received his PhD from Oxford University before coming to live in the United States. As a Doctor of Philosophy, Wang also explores elements of existence and universe came to be in his books. Legends of Azure and the Masked Planet is the third book of the Code of Rainbow saga, with four more installments of the series planned. He currently resides in San Francisco. Learn more about Wang and the Code of Rainbow series on his website, and connect with him on Facebook, Instagram, and Goodreads.
Code of Rainbow: Legends of the Azure and the Masked Planet is available now on Amazon.