Daleks, Potstickers and the Jokepocalypse: Hitchhiking the Galaxy with Charlie Jane Anders
Welcome to "Hitchhiking the Galaxy". Today, we are happy to introduce you to the amazing Charlie Jane Anders whose novel "Alle Vögel unter dem Himmel" ("All the Birds in the Sky") was just published in Germany. Now we want to ask her more or less crazy questions and invite you to join us on a trip through her very own cosmos. Let's get ready in 3...2...1...
TOR ONLINE: If you could choose your own personal theme music/song to play every time you enter a room, what would you pick?
CHARLIE JANE ANDERS: Wow, EVERY time I enter a room? That could get pretty old. But I have a feeling that Grant Green's cover version of "Ain't It Funky Now" would be great, even after a few hundred times entering a room. Or something by Chaka Khan, like "You Got The Love" or "This Is My Night".
What’s your favorite fairy tale, or fairy tale retelling?
I've been obsessed for years with the Grimm Brothers tale of the Mouse, the Bird and the Sausage, ever since a professor talked about it in college. I guess you could say it's my favorite fairy tale. So when I was asked to retell a fairy tale for the anthology The Starlit Wood, I immediately asked, "Has anybody claimed 'The Mouse, the Bird and the Sausage' yet?" They were kind of amazed I even asked that, but I was so overjoyed it was available. That story is so dark and weird.
Having finally established communication with a distant alien species, what’s the first thing that we should tell them about Earth/humans?
Most of how we communicate is either threat display or grooming behavior, but once you get past that we have our moments.
What was your gateway to SF/Fantasy literature, as a child or young adult?
Madeleine L'Engle, Lloyd Alexander, Doctor Who books, Kurt Vonnegut, A.E. Van Vogt, and tons of others!
Name your favorite monster from fiction, film, TV, or any other pop culture source.
Tempted to name a real-world figure, but... I love the Daleks. I love that they're a cautionary tale about the danger of turning ourselves into war machines.
Do you have a favorite word?
"Potstickers." Also my favorite food.
What kind of apocalypse (zombie, robot, environmental, etc.) is most compatible with your survival skills?
That's like asking which type of acid I'd be most likely to survive being submerged in. I would be dead within a few days in any version of the apocalypse. I guess if there was a jokepocalypse where the only way to stay alive was to keep telling jokes all the time, I'd have a shot.
What literary or film science fiction technology do you wish existed in our world right now?
The ability to stop time. If I could cause time to halt, I would get so much writing done while the rest of the world was frozen.