Today I am interviewing Joseph Helmreich, author of the new science-fiction novel, The Return.
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DJ: Hey Joseph! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!
For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?
Joseph Helmreich: Sure! I’m a New York-based writer and The Return is my first novel. When not writing, I work in film distribution and play with an alternative folk band called Honeybrick.
DJ: What is The Return about?
Joseph: The Return is about a washed-up physicist who gets abducted by an alien ship during a live TV broadcast. Years later, he turns up in the desert and claims the whole thing never happened. The story focuses on the physics grad student who tries to track him down and get to the bottom of it.
DJ: What were some of your influences for The Return?
Joseph: Quite a few writers were influential for me while I was writing, among them Harlan Coben, Lee Child, David Mitchell, Bruce Coville and, though it might not be obvious, Tom Wolfe. Also, the great sci fi Spielberg movies of the 70’s and 80’s were always on my mind. And music played a huge role, especially Arcade Fire, Okkervil River, and Joseph Arthur.
DJ: Could you briefly tell us a little about your main characters? Do they have any cool quirks or habits, or any reason why readers with sympathize with them?
Joseph: I think my favorite character is Andrew Leland, the physicist at the center of the story. There’s an ambiguity to him and to his motives where you’re kind of always left guessing. Continue reading