What would you like for readers to take away from your series?
I would love people to be entertained, but also to think about how they define love, or what they would actually do if they were called upon to stand up for something they thought was just, or what they would do if they saw injustice. I would love for them to ask themselves if they might be contributing to injustice through inaction, and in what ways they might be able to change that.
When you first talk about the greenhouse in your writing there is almost a sense of joy or admiration. Do you personally have a love for greenhouses, gardening or flowers?
Nope. I mean, I think everyone can appreciate a beautiful flower, but I don’t have a personal love for any of those things in the same way that Rachel does.
Was there ever a moment when you wouldn’t trade what you do as an author for the world?
What was that moment for you?
There are many! I think the latest one was talking to a group of kids about what we would do in given situations where we might need to take action in order to stand by our convictions. For example, we talked about how hitting is wrong, and what we would do—what we would really do—if we saw a parent hitting a child in a store parking lot. We all knew we should go talk to the parent, but when we thought about whether we actually would, we discovered that this might be harder to do than we think. We talked about what it means to just watch when something bad is happening, and about whether that makes the watcher complicit. Watching the kids figure out that saying nothing is almost as bad as doing the wrong thing, watching them as we talked about how we might be better prepared to act if we need to, it was great!
Is there one book that has had an impact on not only your writing, but on you personally?
Well, there are many. Too many to name any fairly, but I will anyway—Never Let Me Go (Kazuo Ishiguro), The Road (Cormac McCarthy), The Cage (Audrey Schulman). All three wonderful writers, with books that you can get lost in, that also explore important ideas.
You started writing dystopia just after the big bang in Young Adult novels and before the big bang in Dystopias. What is it like seeing your genre doing so amazingly well?
Hmm I love that dystopia is doing well, because I love to read them, but I don’t really think of it as my genre. I like writing them, but I like writing other things too.
Tell us something most people don’t know about you!
I could but then I’d have to kill you.
Thank you for joining us Teri!