The Pop Quiz at the End of the Universe

The Pop Quiz at the End of the Universe: Benjamin Percy

Welcome back to The Pop Quiz at the End of the Universe, a recurring series here on featuring some of our favorite science fiction and fantasy authors, artist, and others!

Today we’re joined by Benjamin Percy, winner of the Whiting Writers’ Award and author of the upcoming novel Red Moon, out from Grand Central Tuesday, May 7.

Join us as we cover subjects ranging from a spiderwebby dungeon to a romantic picnic with Galadriel, and more.

Describe your favorite place to read/write?

I love writing in my office, but it’s a bit of a spiderwebby dungeon, so I’ll go with my favorite reading spot: our three-season porch. I live in snowbound Minnesota, so it’s unavailable six months of the year, but when I can enjoy the space—with its cedar-plank walls and big windows flooded with light and views of the woods all around—I feel like I’m in a tree-house.

If you could choose your own personal theme music/song to play every time you enter a room, what would you pick?

That depends on my mood really. Most days it would be the Rocky soundtrack. I basically go through life shadow-boxing, getting ready for the big fight with Apollo Creed. But when I’m feeling evil, let’s say the Halloween soundtrack—and when I’m feeling randy, Marvin Gaye—and when I’m feeling melancholy, November Blue by the Avett Brothers.

Pop Quiz at the End of the Universe Red MoonChoose your preferred fictional vacation spot: Narnia or Middle Earth (or some other fictional realm)…

Middle Earth, because I think Galadriel (Cate Blanchett) and I would get along smashingly. I would have a sweet sword and leather pants. We would go on long walks in mist-soaked woods and maybe eat a jam-smeared Gollum when we picnicked our second breakfast.

What’s the most embarrassing guilty pleasure you’ll admit to? (music, movies, pop culture, food, drink, etc…all fair game!)

I’m kind of embarrassment-proof. But here’s one that people find surprising: I kind of love Downton Abbey. I didn’t think I would, but then…it’s just so addictive, like cocaine served on a lace doily.

Would you rather discover the fountain of youth or proof of life on Mars?

The fountain of youth, like vampirism, is problematic. Take death out of the equation, you no longer value life and tend to become a sociopathic monster. But maybe I could just dip a toe in it? Steal another century or two? Write a few more books? Climb a few more mountains? Eat a few more bacon double-cheeseburgers?

Benjamin Percy is the author of The Wilding and the upcoming novel Red Moon.


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