Thursday, August 19, 2010

Author Interview and Giveaway: Cameron Stracher discusses The Water Wars

Earlier, I reviewed THE WATER WARS, a book I really enjoyed reading (my review). I am excited to welcome Author Cameron Stracher to Dystopian August today!


Reading THE WATER WARS made me constantly want to drink water. What’s the thirstiest you’ve ever been in your life?
I run a lot, so I'm often very thirsty. If I'm in the suburbs, I'll look for people who are watering their lawns, and stop to drink from their sprinklers. The last couple weeks, however, it's been incredibly hot in New York, and there are water restrictions, and most people don't water their lawn at the time I go running. I ran 8 miles the other day when it was 103 degrees and humid. I don't know if it was the thirstiest I've ever been, but it was close. I must have drunk about two gallons of water when I finally got home.

A war over water isn’t so farfetched, especially when you look at what is going on in North/East Africa right now with Egypt having rights to 90% of the water from the Nile even though the sources are in other countries that really need it too. If a water war were to break out in North America, where would the best place be to live? Should we all be moving to Canada now?
I'll tell you where we shouldn't live: California. Las Vegas, New Mexico, Florida, are close seconds. Most of our fastest growing cities have very little fresh water, and have to import it through upstream reservoirs and aqueducts. It's a bad way to live because those places are imperiled if there are water shortages, and it's destructive of the environment to transport water from long distances. Rather than moving somewhere else, however, I think we should all be conscious of the way we live, our use of water, and how we can be better at conserving. If we live in a desert climate like Nevada or New Mexico, we shouldn't be building golf courses.

The story is told in first person by teenage girl Vera. Was it difficult for you to find the voice of a teen girl? Was it always meant to be told from her perspective?
Actually, it wasn't. I don't know why. I always saw the book as Vera's narrative. I think I was influenced by To Kill a Mockingbird, which is told from Scout's perspective. In an earlier draft, Vera was a couple years younger, but my editor suggested she should be older, and I think that works better.

What is some of your favorite dystopian lit? Would you say any of it influenced your writing at all?
Two books inspired me to write The Water Wars. One was Feed, by MT Anderson, and the other was The Golden Compass, by Philip Pullman, which is not really dystopian lit. But both books showed me the range of imagination and literary skill that was possible in this genre. Once I started writing, I read a lot more dystopian lit, and my favorites are The Hunger Games (of course), The Pretties/Uglies, and The Road. I've also always been a big fan of dystopian movies like Blade Runner, The Matrix, Mad Max, etc.

You work as a lawyer specializing in First Amendment litigation. Do you have any interesting anecdotes to share?
I represent publications like Star magazine and television shows like Dog the Bounty Hunter. I'd love to tell you some stories, but my clients would kill me, and then I couldn't write a sequel. :)

Thanks Cameron!  Nice to hear there's a possible sequel in the works.
 
Since I know it's going to be hard for everyone to wait for January 2011 to read this fun adventure story, I am happy to report that Sourcebooks Fire is sponsoring a giveaway of 2 ARCs!  Just tell me about a time when you were really thristy in the comments and you're entered.  This one is open internationally and will remain open until August 31st at 11:59 pm CST.
 
 
 
Find out more about Sourcebooks Fire at the Teen Fire ning.
 
Photo credit for author photo: Simon Stracher

59 comments:

Autumn said...

I am really really thirsty right now! The medication I take gives me horribly dry mouth and I'm ALWAYS thirsty. Thinking about it is making it even worse LOL

autumn.crochet (at) gmail .com

EVA SB said...

I'm always thirsty.
It's kind of embarrassing when we go to polite get-togethers. Everyone is sipping gently on a glass of something and I'm swallowing down every soft drink in sight!
Now I live in a hot country it is not so noticeable but when I lived in England people would become concerned and give me dire warnings about it being a symptom of diabetes!!

Alessandra @Out of the Blue said...

I'm often thirsty and drink plenty of water. I remember once, after finishing a race for school, I was so thirsty I drank a whole bottle of water (2 liters) by myself. Ah, sweet relief. It tasted wonderful.

Alessandra
outofblue1(at)gmail(dot)com

Jordyn said...

I'm usually not very thirsty but a couple weeks ago I was driving in the city, trying to find this used bookstore, and I'm not very familiar with the area so it was very stressful. After a while I started feeling REALLY horrible... dry throat, dizzy, feeling like I was short of breath. At first I didn't know what it was but then I realized I hadn't drank much water lately so I found a CVS and had my sister run in and buy me a bottle of water. ta-dah! Problem solved.

Ladytink_534 said...

My husband, a friend, and I were exploring an old Civil War battleground that's in a park and we got lost for hours! I've never been that thirsty before or since.

Ladytink_534(at)yahoo(dot)com

Lenore said...

Ladytink - My experience was sorta like that. I was hiking with one of my boyfriends from upper Yosemite to lower Yosemite, and we didn't realize how far it was. I think it took us 8 hrs. And we did not have much water with us at all. Fortunately the ranger station shop was still open once we got down and we just drank and drank.

ikkinlala said...

I was really thirsty a couple of days ago. It was cloudy when I started my hike, but by the time I got home (almost eight hours later) it was really hot and I hadn't taken enough water.

I'm not thirsty often, though, living where I do - the water in our creek is safe to drink without treatment, so even when the power goes out we always have good water.

AHS said...

Actually, I'm really thirsty right now! (I just walked the dog.) And now that I think about it, I'm even thirstier. So it's off for a glass of juice...

Thanks! :)

ahsturgis[at]mindspring[dot]com

Darlyn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Steph Su said...

I'm afraid of being thirsty! I try to have my water bottle near me at all times, because it's too easy for me to forget to stay hydrated. I'll tell you a water-related story, though:

A few years ago, I had to do an ultrasound for some tests. I was told to drink 64oz of water an hour before the test. I woke up that morning and started drinking water, but then realized I wanted to pee to relieve myself of the over-the-night feeling. I wasn't sure how much water I had drank up to then, so I started over on my 64oz of water. By the time I got to the ultrasound office, I was trembling, and my body temperature was all over the place, so horrifying was the feeling in my body from not being able to pee. Even worse, my appointment was delayed because there was a pregnant lady before me, and they take precendence over trembling, cold-flashing teenagers about to pee in their pants.

Needless to say, I try to keep a good balance now!

celi.a said...

8 miles in 103 degree heat?! That's hardcore! Nice interview!

I used to swim and play water polo competitively, and I think the thirstiest I've ever been was after playing every minute of two back-to-back water polo games. I finished off at least a quarter of the orange Gatorade cooler's contents. Man, that did not feel good. Oh, the memories...

celialarsen(at)gmail(dot)com

Darlyn said...

Now I am really thirsty. But as this month is Ramadhan and we are fasting during the day so the days in Ramadhan is the thirstiest ever for me. And being in a hot country, you know how hard a fasting month as we really need to not be dehydrated!

darlyn225 at gmail dot com

Leslie said...

I went to a football game at the beginning of the season, when it's still really hot outside. I got really thirsty about half time, but I'm too cheap to spend $5-10 on a drink. The game lasted FOREVER (as all football games seem to last for me). By the time it was over, I was deliriously thirsty to the point where I couldn't make it back home without a drink. I found a vending machine outside, but I didn't have correct change, so my friend ended up buying a drink for me. Lesson learned.
probablyreading(at)gmail(dot)com

Kaya said...

Oh my gosh, the worst time that I was thirsty was when I was at a Sports Day at school and I had to run a really long race. I didn't want to run the race, but I was forced into it. Anyway, obviously I hadn't prepared at all and during the race I felt like I was dying from the lack of water, my throat was literally closing up and my tongue felt like leather.

I ended up second from last.


k_anon[at]hotmail[dot]co[dot]uk

sRy_ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jacqueline C. said...

The most thirsty that I can ever remember being was when I had the stomach flew a few years ago. I couldn't keep anything down, not even the tiniest sip of liquid. Combined with my high temperature, I was dangerously dehydrated. It's the most physically miserable I've ever been!

Kaitlyn (Kaitlyn in Bookland) said...

This book looks so good! I've been really thirsty when I used to play softball tournaments. Playing 5 games a day in 100 degree heat will do that to you! Thanks so much for the contest.

kaitlynkline[at]gmail[dot]com

PeechieKeen said...

I was really thirsty a lot at camp. They didn't really have water available for us during meal times, and everyone else came prepared with many bottles of it. I had a few bottles, so I savored those and refilled them with tap water, but the drinking water wasn't so great. :/

kittenlover03@sbcglobal.net

Ammietia (a girl you once knew) said...

I spent the whole day in the sun, 30+*C weather, in breeches and half chaps and boots and a black shirt, supporting my friend by joining her at a college get together. Then I had to go riding right after wards (the reason for the breeches) and had to ride for an hour. Not only was I tired, when I came home I drank at least three bottles of water, made myself feel so sick and still was thirsty.

lilybells@live.com

Mrs. DeRaps said...

I actually have a fear of not having water (and chapstick, but that's a whole other novel!). I have water strategically stashed throughout my life. There's some by my bed, in my car, in my trunk (just in case), at work, and in my gym bag. Always.

I loved this interview and want to read this book. This is timely given the shortage of water that we're experiencing in the Northeast (where we're usually okay) and the issues in Pakistan. It's only going to get worse, I fear.

Thanks!
mrsderaps @ hotmail . com

Jenna said...

I had to walk home from school (it takes about an hour since I live out of district) in 90 degree weather while wearing jeans and carrying 3 textbooks. I was so dehydrated when I got home.

Anyways, I've been looking forward to reading this one for a while, and I don't think I can wait any longer! Thanks for the contest.

jennapomme[at]yahoo[dot]com

Alyce said...

I have been very thirsty the past few days going on walks with my boys. We keep forgetting to take water bottles with us. I remember when my sons were babies it seemed like I was constantly thirsty then.

Kristen said...

Looks like you got some spam up there.. or someone really just loves solitaire?

I digress. I feel like I'm always thirsty, but I think the worst was when I had to march in parades with marching band when it was 100 degrees out and we had to wear our wool outfits for about a mile. I think I drank probably 1 gallon of water when I got home after those days.

Thanks for the giveaway and interview!

dragonzgoil at gmail dot com

buddyt said...

I think the thirstiest I have ever been had more to do with altitude rather than heat.

My husband and I climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania years ago and by the time we reached the top we could have cheerfully drunk gallons of water even although we were standing in knee deep snow !

It seems that everybody else was similarly affected.

Thanks for the giveaway and for opening it up to worldwide entries.

Carol T

buddytho {at} gmail DOT com

Badass Bookie said...

Earlier this year I went camping in the mountains and they had this adventure park there where there was a ropes course and being brave and all I did it!

Half way through I got so thirsty I nearly fainted! Not only that but we were wearing full length jumsuits with long sleeves and all to protect ourselves! I never had been mroe thirsty in my life! ( I also never did the ropes course again)

callmeghostgirl@yahoo.com.au

cories said...

It seems to me that I'm generally a quart low all day and then I'd feel really thirsty close to bedtime. Sure, I can drink a lot of water then but this means that I will have to get up in the middle of the night. What to do...

cories119[at]yahoo.com

Jessy said...

I was really thirsty last week while walking around the streets of San Francisco. All those hills, I don't know how people do it.

Findjessyhere at gmail dot com

Zibilee said...

I think it's so funny that Cameron drinks from the sprinklers on his walks! I loved this interview, Lenore!

I must say that I am always thirsty. I have a drink with me at all times, even when I lay down to go to bed. I think it's because of medications, but I always feel like I am the thirstiest I have ever been!!

debbie said...

Back when I was in college, I had a couple of friends that were hortoculture students. They were working in a community garden. I volunteered to help them. We rode our bikes there, worked all day, and rode our bikes back. The thing was it was about a ten mile round trip, and about 80 degrees out. I didn't bring any water with me. I think I may have had a mild heat stroke. I was never so thirsty in my life.
twoofakind12@yahoo.com

Jill of The O.W.L. said...

When I was in 6th grade we went on an end of the year picnic. It was super hot and there were no water fountains there. We all sat around complaining how hot and thirsty we were. I'm sure it was just a joy for the teachers!

foltzsfantasticbooks at gmail.com

Pokadots1121 said...

The time I was really thirsy was when I went to Disney World. Thousands of people moving around me trying to get on the same ride. I was in the hot blazing Florida sun for 45 minutes at every ride I tried to get on. I was jealous of anyone who had a drink in there hand.
Pokadots1121@yahoo.com

Tia said...

The thirstiest I can remember being is when I went to the Olympics in Atlanta way back when... I don't know how hot it was at the equestrian and track and field events, but I definitely thought I would pass out, parched!

Rebecca said...

I remember wandering in a HOOOOT forest with my class being really thirsty. Not a pleasant memory! :P

- Rebecca
rebeccavaever@gmail.com

teamouse said...

I'm pretty thirsty right now actually, but I'm in bed surfing blogs and its cold outside my room so there is no chance I'm getting out and getting a drink. I guess I'll just wait until morning then! Let's hope a water war doesn't start while I'm asleep or I've got a problem!!

sugarcubequeen (at) gmail (dot) com

throuthehaze said...

I'm really thirsty now! I just ate a spicy burrito and I am parched :)
throuthehaze at gmail dot com

YA Vampire Books said...

A time when i was really thirsty?...hmm
When I had finished running 11 kilometres for sure!

sosarora_11(at)hotmail(dot)com

Charlotte said...

I hope this isn't sharing Too Much, but I can't think of anything else to say, and I'd love to read this book!

The last time I was awfully thirsty was last Thursday night when I fell prey to foul stomach bug...I wanted to drink, but knew full well the awful consequences....

Gubry said...

I remember a time I was really thirsty. I was sleeping and then I woke up with something like a fever and my throat was really dry and I was really thirsty, I needed something to drink. So, I drank water and problem solved. Although in the palace where I live it's a hot place so I need to drink, hehe.

ricettebunny (at) live . com

misha1989 said...

Living in a city which can horribly hot during the summers, I am thirsty most of the time!

Misha
mishamary@gmail.com

Em said...

The last day of a backpacking trip gone wrong (a bear took over our camp one night and ate much of our food leaving us with little for the remainder of our time in the woods) it was very hot, I had had little to eat, and only the water that we had filtered before setting out that day. By the end of the trip, I was beyond thirsty, hungry, tired.

Jennifer said...

Hm. There was this one time, I guess.

I had got roped into taking this course on taking care of children, and on the first day of the class, the instructor thought it would be a good idea to take a 3 mile hike up to the highest point in the city where I live in. ( To demonstrate strength ?? )

Anyways, I showed up in long, dark jeans, expecting to learn CPR and stuff like that. And I ended up hiking a cumulative 5 miles in the blazing heat without any water.

When it was over, I was incredibly happy to have some water.

Anywho, I'm extremely excited for this book, as I love dystopias that make your heart race~

janflora said...

This book looks fascinating. More info about water shortages needs to be out there.
I was doing a lot of hiking and camping a few years back and I remember being SOO parched (i was probably really dehydrated). I'll tell you, nothing tastes better than fresh water from a spring when you are really thirsty!

kmgraha2 said...

I live in Florida, so it is always hot! I am a teacher and standing outside for morning and afternoon duty really draws a thirst out of you!

kmgraha2 (at) mail (dot) usf (dot) edu

Ashley said...

The worst was when I was around 13 or so. I was at a summer camp, and they took us on an 'easy hike'. It was supposed to be about 2-2 1/2 miles round trip, and all relatively level.

Well, our 'guide' was an idiot and ended up taking us all over who knows where, making us climb up the side of a mountain and then back down the other side. It was a little ridiculous. You don't take 50 13 year old girls up the side of the mountain when they are only prepared for a short hike.

Needless to say, we were all very hot, very thirsty and very angry.

basicallyamazingbooks [at] gmail [dot] com

Jenny N. said...

I get so thirsty on hot summer days when I have to go somewhere and have to stand around in the sun waiting for the bus to come. Its hot so I have to stay hydrated.

jen4777[at]hotmail.com

Christina said...

During my last weeks of graduate school (to get my Masters in Library and Information Science) about a month or so ago, I went with two good friends to Kennywood (Pittsburgh's theme park). I, like the genius I am, had only one swig of water (to take my morning allergy pills) before going to the park. We got there at about 10 AM and did the oh boy we're at a theme park thing. Within a couple hours, I felt absolutely awful. I was so thirsty that the inside of my mouth felt like glue or something, as though even saliva production was displeased about my failure to intake liquids combined with an insistence on standing outside in the hot sun for hours. I finally got myself one of those gigantic plastic drink bottles. Man, was it fabulous to be hydrated again!

LucĂ­a said...

One time when I was walking with my mum in Buenos Aires searching a dress for my birthday party!

Thanks for the opportunity :D

luli_.22(at)hotmail(dot)com

Shallee said...

I was always thirsty when I was in Ghana, Africa, because it was so darn HOT. It was the worst in Northeren Ghana, because it's so arid. In the dry season, there's almost no water, and the people have to dig deeply for it. They practically attacked the government water truck when it came. I could definitely see how a war could break out over water!

The Witty Librarian said...

Ah, the trauma of being thirsty! When I was a kid I would dread going over to friends' houses for meals because their parents would be so stingy on the drinks! I would only be given a half glass of milk/water/Koolaid, which I would promptly finish in one gulp, because I was ALWAYS thirsty, and then be dismayed when I realised that was it- no refills, no nothing, to last me through the meal. I could barely eat due to the excrucating dryness of my mouth. Now, I always carry a water bottle on me, so I no longer am terrorized by the fear of NOTHING TO DRINK!!!

~The Book Pixie said...

I would probably have to say the times have been the most thristy were when ever I would have to have a medical test or procedure and couldn't eat or drink after midnight and my procedure or test wasn't until like noon or later. That always sucks.

This is a great contest and I'd love to be entered. :D

~Briana
thebookpixie[at]yahoo[dot]com

ako4eggs said...

I always get really thirsty whenever i play soccer.

ferretvamp14 said...

I played travel softball during the summers when I was younger. We played one tournament in Jupiter, Florida and the temperature was over 100 degrees. We played 7 games back to back trying to keep from being eliminated. I was soooooo thirsty all day long!

Thanks for the giveaway!
ferretvamp14[at]live[dot]com

Tabathia said...

When I was in the hospital ready to deliver and they won't allow you to eat or drink so I went 24 hours plus with nothing and I couldn't stand ice cubes
tbarrettno1 at gmail dot com

Meredith said...

This morning in class! and during break there wasn't a drink machine to be found, and the cafe is closed on Saturdays! I had to go to a shopping plaza across the street after class to find something. I get thirst whenever my sugar gets wonky too.

meredithfl at gmail dot com

Christina said...

I forgot to add my email to my description of Kennywood to enter the giveaway. Here it is:

cynicalsapphire@gmail.com

Linda Henderson said...

I remember once being in the hospital and couldn't have anything but IV fluids for a week, it was a dry time.

seriousreader at live dot com

pixie13 said...

I'm always thirsty & have been since I was about 13. I drink about a gallon of water a day & I'm still always thirsty. No, I'm not diabetic. Just always thirsty!

gevin13{at}gmail{dot}com

Laina said...

I don't usually like water, but this one day at this fair/rodeo thing I went to with my family, I got so thirsty because it was just boiling, and downed like 2 bottles of water. And yeah, not that interesting XD

Laina1312@gmail.com

Maddie M. said...

I want to be entered!
Running 8 miles for school...:/
maddie.mcphail@gmail.com