Author interview with Supernatural Snark

If you were suddenly thrust into the Alaskan wilderness today without any survival training, aside from finding food and water, what would be your number one concern or priority? 

My number one concern would be getting the hell out of there.I am like Miles—absolutely no wilderness skills. Even finding food would be a joke. I can’t tell one plant from the other, and would probably be obsessing about those poisonous berries that killed that Into the Wild guy and be too afraid to eat anything. I can’t even build a decent fire in the fireplace of my Paris apartment. They all go out after about five minutes.So when I was writing Juneau’s character, I kept telling what she would do and then would go back and read it and think, “No way could I ever do that.” The respect Miles has for her is basically what I felt as I watched her.

In a communal survival situation like that of Juneau and her family, everyone has to contribute something in order to help the group succeed. What’s one task the group would never ask you to help with because it’s not something you’d do well?

Although I don’t know much about first aid, I am really good about keeping a cool head when there’s blood all over the place. I’m good in emergencies. So I can imagine being clan doctor.

I’m a historian and know all of these random facts (none terribly useful, unfortunately), so I could help Dennis with the teaching.

However, anything to do with planting stuff…forget it. I have a black thumb. Plants sneer at my feeble attempts to keep them alive and drop all their leaves and wither…just out of spite. So no one would want to let me near the crops.

Also, I could never kill anything. Okay, I flushed a live goldfish once, but I won’t go into that story right now for fear of being labeled fish-killer. It’s totally hypocritical because I eat animals, but could never kill one.

So, thinking about the good of my clan, gardener or hunter would be last on the list of jobs-I-could-do.

If a stranger came to you and told you everything about your life up to this point has been a lie and there’s someone out there who knows more about your past than you do, what’s the first thing you would want to ask that person?

I would want to know just how much my parents knew. What their involvement was. How deep their deceit had been, so I could weigh their motivation for lying to me.

Conspiracy theorists are convinced the government is keeping a variety of secrets from us just as massive secrets have been kept from Juneau. Is there any one particular conspiracy theory you’re inclined to believe?

No—I don’t need to be a conspiracy theorist. I just don’t believe anything the government says. :) People want power. And for many, power comes in hiding the truth, whether on a small scale—hiding something from your spouse—or on a grand scale like spying on your own citizens.

I just don’t believe anything, so I’m never disappointed when some crazy truth appears. It could be because I too had a brainwashed upbringing (but mine was religious), so now I suspect anyone who presents a “truth” as having ulterior motives.

Juneau is forced to come to the realization that the world is not at all what she thought it was. If she could leave her world and travel to another from any piece of YA fiction, which one would she most flourish in?

Katniss would choose Juneau as an ally in the Games. Juneau would be able to sympathize with Aria from Never Sky (and would be a good travel companion). And she would definitely be in Dauntless with Tris.

If you went from living in the wilds of Alaska to a modern city, what’s one aspect of city life you think would be the most difficult for you to wrap your mind around?

The energy. I spent seven years living in a tiny village in the French countryside, and every time I visited Paris, I was overwhelmed (in a good way) by the energy of the city. The people, the cars…everything going top speed. For me it was like being on a roller coaster. I loved it. But, even more than the novelty of electricity and skyscrapers, I think the energy of a city would be a shock to Juneau, who is used to the rhythm of nature.

The cover of After the End features a desolate landscape with the promise of civilization on the horizon. If you were to design your own cover for book two right this second, what piece of imagery might we see on it?

Juneau driving a red pickup truck through the Arizona desert with a dead body wrapped in a sleeping bag in the back.

 

Well, then. There you go everyone :) Thanks so much for being here today Amy!

See the original article here.