JUSTIFY YOURSELF: Catherynne M. Valente
Catherynne M. Valente, author of The Labyrinth, was kind enough to subject herself to...
Why should readers pick up your book as opposed to, say, just about anybody else's book?
Because my book is so much cheaper than LSD, and nearly twice as legal. You are required to brave up to 60% fewer dark alleys and abandoned factories to obtain my book, and the seediness of the pushers involved in your transaction has been reduced by 67%. The FDA has recently determined that Product #423789A, “my book,” causes 1/3 less side-effects than LSD, and actually has nutritional value as a fiber-rich foodstuff. No other book on the market provides such an attractive alternative to spinal-fluid altering drugs as my book.
Does your book have any socially redeeming qualities? If so, what are they?
Embedded on page 47 of my novel is a wafer-thin microchip containing a small, well nigh insignificant section of DNA code. When the reader turns this particular page, the code will be silently and painlessly transferred into his or her cells. Slowly, the reader will then be mutated into a quasi-godlike creature capable of astounding feats of intellect and strength. The last section of code will then kick in, compelling the now all-powerful reader to go forth into major metropolitan areas and fight crime. Thus will my book spread like a virus, and save the world.
Does your book have any medicinal or mental health value to readers?
Besides being declared a fiber-rich foodstuff on a par with a pint and a half of Guinness, my book also cures all known anxiety disorders and pancreatic dysfunctions. Side effects, unfortunately, include encephalitis.
Assume your book has been filed under "Ages 8 to 12" in the children's section, perhaps by mistake, perhaps not. How horrified do you imagine a child would be after reading your book, and why? How many years of therapy would the child take to recover from the experience?
The lovable scamp in question would very likely immediately begin spurting blood from her adorable little eyeballs, and become suddenly incapable of communicating except in Silver-Age Latin. Electro-shock therapy would only succeed in advancing her as far as Carolingian Latin, at which point the lisping cherub would be beyond hope. Only repeated doses of high-proof alcohol will return her to a normal state. Sadly, this therapy must be continued throughout the Dickensian rascal’s lifetime.
Also, it will turn her gay.
If no one buys your book and you are unable to continue publishing your fiction due to the intense vilification that occurs in the media, what line of work will you go into?
I’ll start “Mother Cat’s Finishing School for Girls,” which will require the reading of The Labyrinth as a condition for entrance. Classes in Obscure Latin Dialects will be offered three times daily, and a complimentary blood-bucket will be provided to all students who can produce proper records detailing the dramatic and scandalous circumstances of their births.
All graduates will be turned gay.