Today I am interviewing Jo Zebedee, author of the science-fiction novel, Inish Carraig, and The Inheritance Trilogy.
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DJ: Hey Jo! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!
For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?
Jo Zebedee: thank you for having me! I’m a sff writer from Northern Ireland and I write a range of dark sf, Space opera, fantasy, some horror shorts, that sort of thing. I also run my own management consultancy and deliver training courses on – amongst other subjects – writing and run after not-so-small kids. Basically, boredom is not a danger.
DJ: What Inish Carraig about?
Jo: It’s essentially ‘the aliens invade Belfast and the locals aren’t happy…’ It’s written very close to the characters so there is an authentic Northern Irish voice to the book (but people all over the world assure me they can understand it!) Since an authentic NI voice includes a lot of swearing, the language is colourful in it, too!
I set the book after the invasion so it has a kind of close-in District Nine vibe to it and a dystopic feel which Belfast really lent itself to, all gritty and harsh and claustrophobic. It’s become something of a cult hit for me, so it seems to have worked!
DJ: What were some of your influences for Inish Carraig?
Jo: That’s actually incredibly hard to answer.
In terms of the sci fi elements (because that’s easier) I wanted a classic feeling sf-thriller that drew the reader in a little closer than most. I didn’t want it to be jumping on the dystopic bandwagon but to be a little more subtle, a reimagining of the city in a new way. So, a bit of classic sf, with some thriller elements to keep the pace up.
In terms of the voice – I wanted it to very much feel of the place. But I wanted it to be about the Belfast-now, not hark back to the Troubles (a period of civil unrest). I’m very fed up with that in books, as if the Troubles are all that define the country. So I wanted it to feel like the city was very real and looked at some of the authors who do that well, both from here and in wider books. Continue reading