TTBF14 Interview: Scott Westerfeld



~Post by Emily & Kendall

TPC: From your debut to now, how has the YA world changed and what are your

Scott: Well the YA world has definitely got a lot bigger. It has been 10 years so when
my first book, Midnighters, and Uglies came out in 2005. Nobody expected a YA book to be the bestselling book of the world. It had never happened and never would happen.They thought. The first print of Uglies was only 7500 copies and the advance was only $15,000. YA was a sleepy little part of the book world and book stores. Then as the people of the harry potter world grew older, started to age up and started to read YA and the genre of YA just blew up. Then adults started to read YA as well. It’s sort of like Rock & Roll music. A lot of music start with teenagers and then adults end up listening to it too.

TPC: You’ve written in several different genres, where does your heart belong? Steam
punk, Sci-Fi, or contemporary?

Scott: Probably Sci-fi. That’s what I read when I was a little kid, that is the stuff that is down in my DNA the most. I loved all the things that I have written and I’ve always been fond of the Steam Punk genre. That is really kind of a form of Sci-Fi.

TPC: What’s your favorite book that you’ve read this year?

Scott: This Is Not A Test by Courtney Summers. It’s about these kids that are trapped in their high school during the zombie apocalypse. So they all take shelter in the high school because there’s a water tower & food. It’s sort of the like the breakfast club with zombies.

TPC: In your new book Afterworlds, did you rite Darcy’s story and then Darcy’s novel are
the same time or did you write them separately?

Scott: I wrote them in the same order that you read them because I wanted my mind to be bouncing back and forth between them because that is how Darcy’s does between her real life & her novel.

TPC: What are some of your writing rituals?

Scott: I always write at the same time of day, which is right after my morning coffee. I always write in the same chair. I don’t usually listen to music. I always go back three days, so if I write 1000 words per day I go back and read 3000 words before the blank page. So that by time I’ve finished my first draft it’s already been reread 3 times.

TPC: How long did it take you to develop that system?

Scott: I invented the system when I was writing the Midnighters & the Uglies. Now I have more confidence and I know what I need to do so I’m not as mechanical as I used to be. Now that I’m older I’m less ritualistic.

TPC: What’s your favorite thing about Austin so far?

Scott: I know Austin really well because I grew up in Dallas. My favorite thing about TTBF14 was hanging out at the Driskell last night. A whole bunch of authors like James Dashner, Garth Nix, Alaya Dawn Johnson, & Paolo Bacigalupi were there. We just hung-out and had lots of food and drinks and it was really fun!

TPC: Can you give any hints to what you’re working on now?

Scott: I can hint that I am working on a collaboration novel between me and two other Australian writers. We each do a couple of POV and it’s about a group of kids with superpowers.