Tuesday, March 13, 2012

MFA Greensboro Alum Julianna Baggott Interviewed

Juliana Baggott on Punching Neil Gaiman
Julianna Baggott
You can read the beginning of Pure on Figment for a limited time here. Below, we ask Julianna some questions about Pure, writing under a pen name, and why her son wants to punch Neil Gaiman in the face.

Describe Pure in 5 words.

Haves and have-nots collide.

In the world of Pure, there are the “Pures,” those safe in protected Dome, and the “Wretches,” those struggling to survive outside of Dome’s walls. Which group did you create first, Wretches or Pures?

I wrote Pressia’s world first. I started with her in that ash-choked cabinet with a doll-head fused to her fist. It was a very short piece of writing, an urgent litany:

They both know the whispers of what happens to you if you don’t turn yourself into O.S.R. headquarters on your sixteenth birthday. They will take you while you’re asleep in bed. They will take you if you walk alone in the rubble fields. They will take you no matter who you pay off or how much – not that her grandfather could afford to pay anyone anything. If you don’t turn yourself in, they will take you. That isn’t just a whisper. That’s the truth.

I read this section to my daughter, who’s now 16, and she said it was the best thing I’d ever written and that I had to write the book.  I wrote Partridge’s scene next, but a much later scene–one where he is amid massive fan blades. Again, an urgent scene was what came to me–his escape. I don’t always write my novels in the order they finally appear.

Read the full interview here: http://dailyfig.figment.com/2012/02/15/julianna-baggott-on-punching-neil-gaiman/

Find out more about the MFA Writing Program here:

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