Hostile Questions: Ellen Datlow

If you write horror and write short stories (and are, you know, pretty good at it), chances are you’ve been anthologized by Ellen Datlow. She’s edited over 50 of those suckers, including the annual Best Horror of the Year, Naked City: Tales of Urban Fantasy, and Troll’s-Eye View. For sifting through the blood-stained slush she’s won just about every genre award you can think of, including the World Fantasy Award, Locus Award, Hugo Award, Stoker Award, and the Largest Award Shelf Award.

So, yeah, Datlow has come upon some hostile creatures in her time. But how many had ninja karate machine gun interview skills?!?

Maybe it’s just me, but I found Datlow a bit catty.

Just who do you think you are?

> A cat owner (only two at any given time).

> An endangered species–a short story editor. I love stories. I’ve always loved stories. I edited them at Omni Magazine, and I still do for original anthologies.

> The queen of cyberpunk (in my misguided youth); the queen of horror (forever); a progressive, politically; and a feminist.

> A voracious reader–I was one of those kids who read cereal boxes during breakfast.

> A woman who loves buying flowers for herself.

> A traveler who loves coming home.

> A photographer who loves black & white.

Where do you get off?

14th street & 8th Avenue is the closest stop. Thanks for asking. I’ve been living in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village since around 1973 and grumbling how the city has changed ever since.

What’s the big idea?

The big idea behind Terri Windling and my next young-adult anthology After is to showcase the rich imaginings of 19 great writers who envision our world crumbling (or already crumbled) economically, politically, and ecologically, and how young people deal with that reality. And to keep it all entertaining–which we think we’ve accomplished.

What is your problem, man?

The internet: Facebook and Twitter–too distracting, man. I can’t stay away–I do it all at home on my desktop (no smart phone, only a very stooooopid one). So if I’m home and working… I’m also at home and playing.

Haven’t you done enough?

Never. The more I corrupt young minds the better–but gee, thanks for asking.



About the Author:

Dan Kraus is Booklist's Editor of Books for Youth. He is also the producer and director of numerous feature films, most notably the documentary Work Series, and the author of several YA novels, including Rotters and Scowler, both of which won the Odyssey Award. Follow him on Twitter at @DanielDKraus.

4 Comments on "Hostile Questions: Ellen Datlow"

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  1. Hallelujah, an interview where it’s not the Same Old Familiar Questions. Great blog.

  2.' Ellen Datlow says:

    And they were some of the most difficult I’ve been asked 😉

  3. Ooo! Oooo! Interview MEEEE next!!!

    I’m even meaner than Datlow.

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