Diana Gabaldon Talks Outlander TV Series

Still of Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe in Outlander on Starz

Fans have been waiting for years for Diana Gabaldon's Outlander novels to be turned into either a feature film or a television movie. Starz and Ronald D. Moore, best known for his Battlestar Galactica reboot for Syfy, have finally adapted the first book.

The ratings were so good in the first two weeks of the show that Starz has already renewed the series for season two. Season one consists of 16 one hour episodes, a fact that was not lost on author George R. R. Martin who bemoaned that fact that he only gets 10 episodes per season for Game of Thrones on HBO.

Author Diana Gabaldon has millions of avid fans from all around the globe and has worked closely with Ronald D. Moore on the show. She's even on tour with the actors to promote the series, which is a first for her.

In this video Dr. Gabaldon reveals that she only wrote the first book in the series to see if she could do it. She didn't go to Scotland for research, she says, because she never thought it would be published. It was, after all, just a practice novel. Well, we all know how that turned out. Now there are eight books in the series, and fans are awaiting the ninth.

When she got the first book published she realized that it was going to be a hard sell because it crossed so many genres. So at bookstores she would size up customer and do a pitch based on age and gender. For young women, she told them it was a historical romance with handsome men in kilts. For older gentlemen, she told them it is military fiction. For really old men, she sold it as historical fiction. And for likely sf fans, she revealed that she had been hired to write a scholarly article about the possibility of time travel and those theories are in the book. It's quite funny. Of course, once she really got popular, the audiences spanned gender and age, so she had to come up with a different tactic.

If you've been living in a cave for the past decade or so, Outlander tells the story of Claire Randall (Caitriona Balfe) who is a British combat nurse in World War II. When the war ends she goes on a second honeymoon with her husband Frank (Tobias Menzies) to Scotland where she falls through some standing stones and ends up in 1743. She gets captured by a band of Scots (who are not fond of the English) and she meets the Jamie Fraser, played by Sam Heughan in the series. She also meets her real husband's ancestors, and they are not what she's expecting.

You can watch the pilot for Outlander for free at Starz.com. But if you want to see more, you'll have to subscribe. Take a look:



Photo: Ed Miller/Sony Pictures Television

Posted on August 16, 2014

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