Exclusive Interview: Julianna Baggott

Pure fuse

SciFiChick.com was recently able to interview accomplished author Julianna Baggott, author of the YA dystopian thriller Purereviewed here.

Can you tell us a bit about Pure in your own words?
It starts with a 16 year old girl hiding in an ash-choked cabinet, her hand fused to the head of a doll, the result of the Detonations. She lives near rubble fields and deadlands. There’s also a boy who’s survived in a Dome. He’s a Pure. Their two lives become entwined in ways that make the novel a thriller.

Post-apocalyptic/dystopian novels are popular right now. What do you think sets Pure apart from the rest?
I wanted to tell an intimate story in a large cinematic landscape — a world I got to make by hand. From there, the novel is built from the dark finery of my subconscious on a lot of levels so my own twisted head sets it apart, I suppose.

Pure’s future world is a unique and dark place. Has creating it been a gradual process, or did you come up with it right away?
Every novel is 17 million ideas — not just one. Still, some parts rushed in — all windswept with ash. Others took tinkering.

Will this be a trilogy?
Yes. F– USE comes out February 2013. BURN follows in February 2014. I will attach — for the first time! — the cover for F– USE. It just came out! [see above]

When writing for the young adult market, do you write with that target audience in mind?
I write with one reader in mind. One ear to whisper the story into. It’s much easier that way.

I read that Pure has been optioned for a movie. Any other news on that front?
It’s in development with Fox2000. I don’t know if they’ve hired a screenwriter or director … I guess I should check in. It’s a slow process.

What’s next for you, after the Pure series? Any other stories on the horizon?
I’m working with two fellow writers on two different projects — both collaborative.

Tell us a bit about yourself and your experience in writing.
Pure is my 18th book. I write as Baggott but also under the pen names N.E. Bode and Bridget Asher. I also write for the New York Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, NPR … I have three collections of poetry.

Who are some of your favorite authors? What books do you love?
I was an early fan of Dahl and Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Lee Smith and many poets. They got in early and were rooted.

What do you do when you’re not writing? In your spare time?
I don’t have much by way of spare time. I have four kids, two dogs, a cat. I teach in the College of Motion Picture Arts at Florida State University. Things get crazy.

Thanks for your time! Is there anything else you’d like to add?