Author of Stoning the Devil
Interview with Alexander Weinstein, author of Children of the New World
My interview with Alexander Weinstein, recently published in Rain Taxi Review of Books (link at the end of post). This collection of speculative dystopian fiction has been compared to the Black Mirror TV series. It’s quite excellent.
Garry Craig Powell: In a recent interview with 0 + 1 reads, you cite the influence of filmmaker Charlie Kaufman and mention that in spite of his metaphysical concerns, he grounds his stories in a gritty world. It struck me, reading Children of the New World, that you do that too. Unlike some cerebral writers, including some that you acknowledge as influences, you create complex, well-rounded characters with whom we can empathize. In the title story, “Children of the New World”, for example, a couple has to ‘delete’ their virtual son when his program is plagued by a virus—and incredibly, we feel sorry for them. You seem to want the reader not only to consider where the future is leading us, but also to explore universal human problems. Would you agree with that?
Alexander Weinstein: Absolutely. I think the future is intrinsically linked with our universal human problems. In fact it’s these very problems, and how we deal with them, which will determine our future. I set many of my stories in a gritty “realist” world, but one that is plagued by an overuse of technology, which is akin to the world we find ourselves living in now. The problems we have with our current technology often reveal our own human foibles, and it’s these new emotions of cyberspace which reveal our struggles. (Continue reading)