At the beginning of April 2016 Peter Verdi's Magnetic Scrolls Chronicles website went offline. So far all my attempts to contact Peter failed. His site carried some invaluable interviews with former Magnetic Scrolls people. To preserve the work I temporarily uploaded a dump of his site taken in summer of 2015. All you can see below is 100% Peter's work! Hopefully his site will reappear soon! Peter, if you read this, can you contact me?

Remember how it's like to ride on a cloud? How it feels to be squashed by a bus, or how to get that damned gold disc from Micky? Well, here's your chance to relive all these situations.

Have a chat with the devil in THE PAWN, ransack an entire island in THE GUILD OF THIEVES, restore luck itself to a whole country in JINXTER, uncover a conspiracy in CORRUPTION, become an inter-dimensional secret agent in FISH!, an ancient god in MYTH, walk in the footsteps of Alice in WONDERLAND and inherit a haunted mansion in THE LEGACY.
Become a part of the fantasy of Magnetic Scrolls - you certainly won't regret it . . .


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(Inaccurate) Memories Of Memories - A Conversation With Michael Bywater (page 3)


"Jinxter" title screen (Commodore Amiga)


"If I could answer the question I would sell the answer to the 76 % of Americans whose ambition it is to write a book and make a fortune."

- Michael Bywater


There was a second issue of the "What Burglar" magazine which could be ordered directly from Magnetic Scrolls. Did you write that one as well and was that planned from the beginning or did that just "happen" while you were writing the first issue?
I'm afraid I can't remember. It all sort of blurs, you know?


Let's move on to "Jinxter" then - the original version of the story was written by Georgina Sinclair, Anita' sister. How did you get involved in the writing process?
It was a bit cloudy even then. I think Georgina's version, which if I remember was called "Green Magic", was somehow not quite right. Georgina wasn't a writer, really, but wanted to do a game and produced something immensely charming but for whatever reasons didn't quite work in the genre. This is something that happens all the time -- in films, for example. Most movies have an almost infinite number of drafts before the one that gets shot, and even that is usually radically altered in the editing room.

Do you recall any specifics about what was wrong with Georgina's draft?
I can't recall anything specifically wrong with the original script, as I say. But it needed some work and Anita asked if I'd look at it. I decided it would actually be easier to rewrite it from scratch, which is something I've always preferred to do rather than re-draft or edit. So the process was quite interesting because the game logic had already been coded and only the descriptors were changeable.

For example we might have had, at the logical level, X cuts Y and A opens & B comes out. Well, you could start with "The fairy sword cuts the cobweb mantle and the magic room opens and Euphorbia the tinkling gnome dances out". You might think, no, we'll change all that and have "The enraged ogre's penknife cuts the imbecile mountaineer's safety-rope and his anorak tears open and his lunch falls out" which is obviously a completely different narrative passage but the underlying structure is the same. And that's basically all I did. I got the structure and changed the way that structure was enacted.


How much of Georgina's original draft is still in the finished game?
I honestly don't know how much we kept. Nor can I remember the original story. Sorry I can't be more helpful.


Can you shed a little light on the creative process of making Jinxter, like, how you came up with the world and all the characters and situations?
I don't think there's a writer on the planet who can answer questions like that. It's not how it works. You start with an idea and you bat it back and forth with the other people involved and you make up a story. In this case it was easier because the underlying structure was already in place, though actually that's often the case.

Think of a detective story. B kills A and leaves clues X Y and Z and C puts them in order and identifies B. Then you just put the scaffolding of your story around it. You put your mind in neutral and off you go.

If I could answer the question I would sell the answer to the 76% of Americans whose ambition it is to write a book (pity they don't read a few as well) and make a fortune. Sorry I can't be more helpful but that's really all I can say.

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