Ten years ago The Hypnosist (Dutch: Hypnose, uitgeverij Cargo) by Lars Kepler was published. To celebrate this, the authors revised their debut. We asked the Swedish writers couple if how it felt to work on their debut after so many years.

©Thron Ullberg

First of all: happy 10th anniversary to The hypnotist! How awesome that you’ve “rewritten” this book especially for this occasion.
Thank you! It’s feels like a very long time and yet just a blink.

What made you decide to do this? Was it your decision to do so?
Our publishing house in Sweden wanted to celebrate the 10th anniversary of our debut as Lars Kepler with a new cover and a new audio edition. We started to read through the book and immediately found details we wanted to change. And when we changed those details, we felt that we might as well fix a dialogue … and there we went.

Have there been a lot of changes?
Yes, we ended up rewriting the whole book – every dialogue, every situation, new chapters. It is the same plot with the same characters, but the chapters are shorter, the pace is much faster and there is more Joona Linna.

What was it like for you to work on Joona Linna’s first story again after so many years?
It was wonderful, actually! We really enjoyed the story and the complex characters. But we could also see how much Lars Kepler has developed over the years and that´s why we wanted it to have a second chance. The Hypnotist is our debut as Lars Kepler, it has a very special place in our hearts.

Have you changed a lot over the past ten years when it comes to writing? Have you seen yourselves grow?
We have definitely changed since we wrote The Hypnotist. Our style is more direct and faster now. And when it comes to the actual writing process, we work a lot more with the plot before we allow our self to be swept away by the inner force of the story.

How long did it take for you to rewrite The hypnotist?
It took us almost half a year.

Is this a one-time thing, or will you do this for every Linna book?
Never say never, but we think it’s a one-time thing. It was a celebration and a lot of fun.

I have recently seen the movie The hypnotist, will there be movies of the other books? Or maybe a tv series?
Right now the movie and tv-series rights are in Hollywood. They are developing both tv-series and movies. It is exciting.

Did you have a say in the script? Did you work on it yourselves or did you choose not to?
We weren’t involved at all in the Swedish movie. They just made it and let us see the result when it was too late for any changes.

Apart from the book, I thought the movie was dark and full of suspense. What did you think of the movie?
We are glad that you appreciated it! We felt that it wasn’t really a film on our book, it was too far away from the Hypnotist, but on the other hand, a lot of writers feel that way when their books are transferred to film.

Personally I think a series would have been better, because so many things have been left out or were altered. I really had to “let go” of the book, so to speak. What was that like for you?
We also think a series would fit our stories, and we are very curious about the script they are writing in Hollywood now. We have a good dialogue with the writer and the production company and feel optimistic about it 😊

Do you have any idea how many Joona Linna books you will write? Or will you just take it as it comes?
We are just about to finish our 8th book and have just gotten a really good idea to the 9th. We love this universe of Joona, and we love to write thrillers together – so hopefully there will be many more books.

Should someone not know your books yet…. why should they read this series?
We just write the books we would love to read our selves, pretty scary stories, with fast-paced plot, a lot of twists … and a big heart.

Thank you so much for answering my questions! I am definitely looking forward to the new Joona later this year!
Thank you, it was a pleasure. Take care!

Interview: Amanda
Translation: Miriam/Yfke

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Ik ben Alexander, bouwjaar 1973. Ik lees graag thrillers en fantasyboeken. Zelf schrijf ik korte verhalen, doe mee aan schrijfwedstrijden en werk aan mijn eigen boek. Ook ben ik bouwkundig tekenaar en hou ik van Formule 1 en wielrennen.

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