Ann Aguirre is the National Bestselling author of the Jax and Corine Solomon series. Enclave is her YA debut.
Byrt: After spending so much time thinking about the end of the world, did it affect the way you think about the future at all? Do you find yourself more worried about genetic engineering/environmental pollutants?
AA: I was always worried about pollution. It’s part of why I made the apocalypse related to pollution and chemical weapons and biological agents, instead of bombs.
Byrt: In Enclave, New York City has devolved into a kind of tribal/gang/cult society, and I was struck by the absence of religion in your world. Was religion something you wanted to avoid, given all the present day political connotations? Or was it just that survival is the only religion?
AA: It didn’t last in the ruins for the reason you mention–survival has become paramount–but there are religions in the world. Our heroes just haven’t encountered them yet. See book two, Outpost.
Byrt: The zombies in your story seem to be evolving – as the series explores how they’re changing, will you also reveal the mythology of how the zombies were created? Or were you planning on a more The Walking Dead style of never really explaining how it happened?
AA: More information becomes available in Outpost. I can only introduce what makes sense for the protagonists to know on their own, or to uncover through real resources they have. New people bring new information, and they meet them in book two. However, minor clarification, I’m not writing zombies, as will become crystal clear in the second book. *evil grin*
Byrt: Can you tell us a little bit about what’s coming up next in the Razorland series? Will the relationship between Deuce and Fade continue to evolve, and do you have an overall plan for how the series will end, how many books it will be? And what other projects do you have coming down the line?
AA: The Razorland series will be three books: Enclave, Outpost, and Horde. The relationships in the trilogy are complex, and yes, they will certainly evolve. I absolutely have a plan. I know how the series ends. As for other projects, I do know what I’ll be writing in YA, next, but I won’t be discussing the particulars until it’s sold. I will say the idea garnered multiple squees from both my publisher and editor, however.
Byrt: And lastly, what are you favorite dystopian works? Was there anything you read or watched that inspired you to write your own series in the genre?
AA: Actually, my love of dystopian worlds springs from two diverse sources. First, I was a child in the 80s, when we lived with the constant fear from nuclear stockpiling and the cold war. In grade school, they actually showed us films on what we should do if the bomb dropped. And then, of course, my fascination comes from film more than books. I’m a huge fan of George Romero. Back in college, for a film class, I did a paper on his seminal work Night of the Living Dead. I haven’t read widely in the dystopian genre, mostly because I wanted to take a crack at it myself, and so I wanted to be able to say, honestly, that any similarity came from a collective zeitgeist. That said, I intend to devour a bunch of titles once I finish my own trilogy so that I can enjoy the fabulous books everyone else has been raving over. I have read The Knife of Never Letting Go, and I rather loved it, so I know I have lots of delicious fiction to devour down the line.
Thanks again to Ann for stopping by the BookYurt!
For more on Ann, you can find her website here.
(And our review of Enclave is here.)