- NPR's Steve Inskeep calls Colson Whitehead's new novel "comic but profound." Set in Manhattan, Zone One takes place in the aftermath a pandemic outbreak that has turned much of the world's population into plague-ridden zombies.In advance of an upcoming on-air interview for Morning Edition, host Inskeep conducted an online interview with the author via Twitter. They discussed Whitehead's inspirations, his setting, working habits -- and even the fate of his characters. ("Yes," Whitehead tells Inskeep, "Zone One is also about porn stars discovering the heroes inside them. Wait -- that sounds bad!")The interview stretched over several days, mostly using #zoneone as a hashtag. Like many conversations on Twitter, the discussion settled into a comfortable rhythm after a staccato start (with one abrupt interruption for childcare duties on the first day). I took a few liberties with the timeline to make the conversation easier to follow. I also added comments from others when they became part of Inskeep and Whitehead's back-and-forth.
I'll add Inskeep's on-air interview below after it airs next week.
Day One, Oct. 6: Inspirations, from films to family (with a brief interruption for childcare duties)
Note: Whitehead's last novel, Sag Harbor, was a coming-of-age story set in a small community of African Americans who spend their summers on the Hamptons.
Whitehead returns to Inskeep's question about "other apocalyptic stories/films" the novelist might have had in mind while working on his new book....