Tobias Buckell is the author of Crystal Rain (my review) and Ragamuffin (review) along with a bit short fiction.
Tobias S. Buckell is a Caribbean-born speculative fiction writer who grew up in Grenada, the British Virgin Islands, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. He has published stories in various magazines and anthologies. He is a Clarion graduate, Writers of The Future winner, and Campbell Award for Best New SF Writer Finalist.
His latest novel, Ragamuffin, was released by Tor in June and I’m very happy to have him as the inaugural author in my ‘Questions Five’ interview format. Enjoy.
If Ragamuffin were a fortune cookie, what would its fortune be?
TB: 'The power to change the destiny of humanity is within you.'
A bit deep, huh, but then, sometimes fortune cookies are, in their own self-reflexive way.
Of course, you then have to add (in bed) to the end so you get:
'The power to change the destiny of humanity is within you, in bed.'
That's a whole other book. I hear when they make the movie version of something adult directors sometimes make a porno version, so that's the fortune cookie fortune of the movie version of Ragamuffin done as a porno.
How would you interpret this fortune if were your own?
TB: Humanity's screwed if the power is within me. I just want to sit in my office and write more books. Seriously, I'm really boring like that. I grew up in the middle of the invasion of Grenada, my life has had enough adventure, I like my little home office.
How do you picture the ‘natural habitat’ of Ragamuffin?
TB: Hopefully, reader's shelves. At the very least, bookshelves of major chains, faced out by adoring minions so that awesomeness of the cover compels passersby to purchase it.
What peculiar qualities of Ragamuffin should readers be aware of?
TB: There's a black woman on the cover with a very big gun doing crazy SF-nal adventurous stuff in outer space that often have only previously been done by manly manly men with square jaws and galactic empires behind them. Apparently this doesn't sit well with some people. My advice is that they should take the cover off and buy the book anyway, but it's bad advice, because she's the main character and kicks ass all up and down the book. There's no escaping her. But at least they'll have the book, and I can forgive a lot for that!
Why should Ragamuffin be the next book that everyone reads?
TB: Dreadlocked space pirates and starships called Starfunk Ayatollah. Crazy aliens that want to destroy humanity and their quisling human enablers who can wipe your brain and turn you into mindless analog equation solvers. Caribbean planets. Giant battles in outer space. Mind-controlling aliens. Plucky young heroines. Good food. Big guns. Really big explosions. Why shouldn't it be the next book everyone reads?