Cecil Castellucci is the author of books and graphic novels for young adults including Boy Proof, The Plain Janes, First Day on Earth and The Year of the Beasts. Her picture book, Grandma’s Gloves, won the California Book Award Gold Medal. Her short stories have been published in Strange Horizons, YARN, Tor.com, and various anthologies including, Teeth, After and Interfictions 2. She is the YA editor of the Los Angeles Review of Books, Children’s Correspondence Coordinator for The Rumpus and a two time Macdowell Fellow. She lives in Los Angeles.
SF Signal had the opportunity to talk with several authors involved in the new anthology, After: Nineteen Stories of Apocalypse and Dystopia, edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling, and featuring stories asking: If the melt-down, flood, plague, the third World War, new Ice Age, Rapture, alien invasion, clamp-down, meteor, or something else entirely hit today, what would tomorrow look like? Some of the biggest names in YA and adult literature answer that very question in this short story anthology, each story exploring the lives of teen protagonists raised in catastrophe’s wake—whether set in the days after the change, or decades far in the future.
CHARLES TAN: Hi Cecil! Thanks for agreeing to do the interview. For you, how would you define Dyslit or what are its essential characteristics?
CECIL CASTELLUCCI: Hello, Charles! Well, I would say that the essential characteristics of Dyslit would be a catastrophe, an apocalypse, or a definite sense of a before and an after. Another thing that I find is that often there is a small tribe of people. You know, like a reduction in population. Or a sense of unlike people being thrown together. A ragged rabble group. Obviously this depends on the story and where / how far the surviving civilization is after the incident.