2014 Reading Passport Featured Writer GARETH L. POWELL is an award-winning science fiction and fantasy author from Bristol. He is the author of five novels, including Ack-Ack Macaque, which won the 2013 BSFA Award for Best Novel. You can find him online at http://www.garethlpowell.com.
The Reading Passport team caught up with Gareth for a short interview.
If you could recommend just one book from your world, which would it be and why?
I’d recommend new readers start with Ack-Ack Macaque. It’s the first book of a trilogy, and co-won the 2013 British Science Fiction Association Award for Best Novel.
Do you have a particular reader in mind when you write?
I guess my ideal reader is my younger self. I am writing the kinds of books I always wanted to read.
Can you discuss three books of any genre which have inspired you in your own writing?
The three books that have probably had the most influence on my writing are Neuromancer by William Gibson, which taught me a lot about the use of stripped-down language; Nova by Samuel Delany, which showed me how you could bend and shape language to suit the needs of the story; and Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell, which taught me that it’s okay to aim high and take risks.
What book are you reading now?
I’m currently reading Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie, a new space opera in the same general vein as Iain M. Banks’s Culture books.
What advice would you give to readers who might want to try something new?
Solaris Books have published three excellent anthologies called Solaris Rising, Solaris Rising 2 and Solaris Rising 3. They contain stories by many contemporary genre writers, and may lead you on to their other stories and novels.
What projects are you working on just now?
I am currently working on my seventh novel.