1984 in the 21st Century: An Anthology of Essays
1. What really inspired you to write your book, to force you from taking an idea or experience and conveying it into a book?
1984 has always been my favorite book. I went into my local Verizon store where “what is your favorite book” was my secret question, and when the employee there saw the book title, he asked me if that was a real book. After Kelly Conway’s “alternative facts” statement, 1984’s recent rise to the top of the bestseller list, and having this recent encounter with the Verizon employee, I realized the public needs to continue reading the book, and keep it in the zeitgeist. I thought a collection of contemporary essays would help keep its message alive.
2. What is it about and whom do you believe is your targeted reader?
1984 in the 21st Century is a look at our current society and how the often tiny steps to fascism and dictatorship can go unnoticed until they all lineup. It spotlights on the fact that the warnings from 1984 are still relevant, and continues to be something we should never take for granted. I hope it will be a companion to 1984, which is currently on the best-seller list, as well as a book that is read by students and teachers while examining 1984 today.
3. What do you hope will be the everlasting thoughts for readers who finish your book? What should remain with them long after putting it down?
That 1984 is a classic that should never be retired, and should always be taught. Many people thought it was a book about the future of the past. The future is now.
4. What advice or words of wisdom do you have for fellow writers?
Get it down on paper. Then edit. Get someone else to give you editorial suggestions, but write it down. In the immortal words of my ex-husband, “writers write.”
5. What trends in the book world do you see and where do you think the book publishing industry is heading?
Women read 80% of all books downloaded in America, so the book publishing industry is going to the female audience. Speak to the women, and you will reach everyone (because men will be reached through their mothers, sisters, wives and girlfriends).
6. What great challenges did you have in writing your book?
Making sure we reached out to all the various groups and interests who could address this conversation. We did not want this to be lopsided. We wanted to make sure that the conservative voice was heard too, because they see a different side of this equation.
7. If people can only buy one book this month, why should it be yours?
At this moment in time, no book better shines a light on our current political fears. We are publishing this book on April 4th, the date on which Winston Smith starts his illegal diary in 1984. The turn-around time on this book is speed of light.