The Pop Quiz at the End of the Universe

The Pop Quiz at the End of the Universe: Karen Akins

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, artists, and others!

Today we’re joined by YA author Karen Akins! When not writing or reading, she loves taking care of her son and hanging out with her husband. And watching Downton Abbey. Karen has been many things in her life: an archery instructor, drummer for the shortest-lived garage band in history, and a shockingly bad tic-tac-toe player. Karen’s debut novel, Loop, is available now from St. Martin’s Press. At a school for time travelers, sixteen-year old Bree botches a solo midterm to the 21st century by accidentally taking a boy hostage… Read an excerpt here on!

Karen may just be the smartest person to have around in our hypothetical SFF duel. Find out why below!

Please relate one fact about yourself that has never appeared anywhere else in print or on the Internet.

I was invited to join Phi Beta Kappa after I’d finished my coursework in college but before graduation. I was out of town for the initiation and whatnot, then I forgot to give the chapter sponsor my check the day of graduation. I’m honestly not sure if I’m a member or not.

Also, I kind of feel like they should have revoked my invite anyway for being so flighty.

Battle to the death, which weapon do you choose: A) Phaser, B) Lightsaber, or C) Wand?

Wand. And here’s why: “Accio, phaser and lightsaber!” Boom. Who do you want to have your back now?

(Oh, but spoiler alert: There’s a lightsaber cameo in Loop.)

Loop Karen Akin excerptIf you had to choose one band or artist to provide the official soundtrack to your new book, who would it be?

The Killers

What literary or film science fiction technology do you wish existed in our world right now?

I hate cooking, so I’m going to say a replicator from Star Trek. Some mornings, I stand in front of my Keurig and say, “Latte. Caramel. Hot.”

From a strictly fun standpoint, hoverboards. (Second spoiler alert: There’s a hoverboard cameo in Twist, the sequel to Loop.)

Describe your favorite place to read or write.

Any place where my children aren’t there. If that place should happen to be covered in powdery white sand, all the better.

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

“Shake Your Groove Thing” by Peaches and Herb. I’ve never met anyone who could listen to that song without breaking into dance. How fun would it be to always walk into a room full of dancing people?

Cast the main characters for the telvision or film adaptation of your new novel.

I had a hard time with this until I realized, oh wait. Time travel. I can go pick my cast from any period and bring them back here.

Bree—Emma Stone (circa Easy A)
Finn—Freddie Prinze Jr. (circa She’s All That)
Mimi—Schuyler Fisk (circa Orange County)
Wyck—Brenton Thwaites (circa…right now)

What is your ideal pet (real or fictional)?

Well, pegamoos (tiny flying cows from Loop) are gaining quite the fan club. Because they’re both awesome AND useful. As a close second, though, I really want a potted baby Groot.

Karen Akins pop quiz interview

Pegamoo drawn by my sister, Ellen Elliot

If you, as a ghost, could regularly haunt one celebrity, author, or literary figure, who would it be?

Edgar Allan Poe. Because how ironic would that be?

Which language, real or fictional, would you like the ability to speak fluently? Who would you talk to?

Elvish. You can say anything to anyone, and it sounds like epic poetry.


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