Besides your books, you also created and run the website TheWeeklings.com. What can new visitors to the site expect?
I am one of four editors who founded the site, including Greg Olear, Jen Kabat and Janet Steen. We print one non-fiction essay every day, 365 days a year. We do cultural critique and analysis, covering every possible topic: movies, sports, politics, sex, television, science, literature, art. New visitors can expect to be wowed by the huge roster of fantastic writers we have.
Tell us a bit about the “You Are Next” tour you’ve been embarking on this year with some of your fellow Seattle-area YA authors. How did that come about?
Well, it’s a lot of fun really. We do school and library visits. We also do a lot of bookstore appearances and various YA events together. Basically, Cat Patrick (The Originals) and Martha Brockenbrough (Devine Intervention) approached me about touring together because we all have one very important thing in common: a mutual dislike of Kevin Emerson (The Lost Code).
Why did I do it? Well, Cat had a launch for her book The Originals, which is about three female clones, and asked if I would play the part of “Betsy” in a staged reading. I said sure, ‘cause that’s what you do for friends, but especially for author friends. Meaning, sacrifice your dignity and manhood to help plump their opening week sales numbers. Then she asked if I would wear a wig. I said sure, cause that’s what you do when Cat asks you something. Then she asked if I would wear a “girly bathrobe.” I said, “hey why not?” but when I tried my wife’s on it barely less came up to the package line (just above the Mendoza but below the Maginot), which seemed a little racy for a Friday night bookstore crowd. So on the way to the event I stopped at Goodwill, but even in the Full Figured Gals section almost nothing looked like it would fit. They had changing rooms, but only for women. Plus, there was a long line. I considered queuing up anyway and just being like “what?”, but ultimately decided it wasn’t worth getting arrested for. So I bought the two largest polyester bridesmaids dresses I could find (broke the zipper on one, gave up on the other after it started cutting off circulation to my left leg) and a muumuu. Turns out the muumuu fit perfectly. And it only cost $3.99. Unfortunately, it had also logged a lot of hard pantry-foraging and couch-lounging hours. Anyone who thinks thrift stores wash the clothes before putting them out on the floor is just the kind of optimist I have always rued not being. But, you know, anything for a laugh. Or a friend. So I strapped on my steeltoes and rocked that pink shit in front of a packed Secret Garden Books crowd, delivering as much Betsy as anyone had a right to ask for. That’s why.
You’ve written about teenage detectives, and chicken-crazed zombies, and now a juvenile delinquent rocker. What’s next?
Well, I have a book of adult short stories hopefully coming out soon. But as far as YA, it’s Bigfoot. Really, my next book, Cornelius Wrathbone, is about Sasquatches. Should be out spring 2015.