Hugh Howey, author of Wool
Tell us about your latest creation:
My newest release is DUST. It wraps up the Silo Saga that began with WOOL and continued with SHIFT. As I write this, it’s been two years to the day that I released WOOL, which changed my life forever. Putting the final touches on this series has been extremely rewarding.
Where are you from / where do you call home?:
When you were a kid, what did you want to become? An author?:
I’ve always wanted to be a writer. I’ve dreamed of doing this since I was twelve. I never thought it would be possible, and I took a circuitous route to get here, but I’m now savoring every moment.
I, ZOMBIE. It was my most risky project, the one that touches on the most traumatic experiences of my life, and a work that was approached for purely cathartic purposes. It’s the least appealing to readers and the least commercial, and I enjoy that about it as well.
Describe your writing environment to us – your writing room, desk, etc.; is
it ordered or chaotic?:
I can write anywhere. I do all my writing on a laptop. I usually have my dog snuggled up against me, making it difficult to type or get comfortable.
When you’re not writing, who/what do you like to read?:
I almost exclusively read non-fiction. History books, like Rick Atkinson’s latest trilogy or psychology works from Steven Pinker. I am a sponge for facts and knowledge.
What was the defining book(s) of your childhood/schooling?:
ENDER’S GAME, by Orson Scott Card. Here was a book about young people saving the universe, and it was written by a guy from my home state. It made me believe I could be anything. Do anything.
If you were a literary character, who would you be?:
I’d be one of Shakespeare’s fools, acting dumb but often saying something with a sliver of insight and wit.
Apart from books, what do you do in your spare time (surprise us!)?:
I collect seashells. I take pictures.
What is your favourite food and favourite drink?:
Pizza and beer. I could eat this every day (if only my wife would allow it).
Who is your hero? Why?:
My parents, both of them. My mother for the way she raised the three of us while working several jobs. My father for his kind heart and work ethics.
Crystal ball time – what is the biggest challenge for the future of books
Competing with various free forms of entertainment. Facebook, Twitter, blogs, social media games . . . these are the things books will compete against. To thrive, they’ll have to continue to offer a brand of entertainment found nowhere else, and that is the building of vivid worlds in silent imagination.