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Interview with Linda Naughton, author of Post-Apocalyptic Sci-Fi Thriller Blackout Trail

cover of Blackout Trail by Linda Naughton

Doctor Anna Hastings is no stranger to disasters, having spent much of her career as an aid worker in conflict zones around the world. Yet when an electrical phenomenon known as an EMP brings down the power grid, Anna faces catastrophe on a scale she never imagined. She must learn what it means to be a doctor in a world deprived of almost all technology.

As the blackout causes planes to fall from the sky, Anna crosses paths with devoted father Mark Ryan in the chaos at the airport. Mark convinces Anna to travel with him and his seven-year-old daughter Lily to their family’s cabin in remote Maine. There Mark hopes to reunite with his wife, and find a safe refuge from a society on the brink of collapse.

Journeying across a thousand miles of backcountry trails, they will face a daily struggle against nature. Their biggest peril, though, may come from their fellow survivors. As Anna grows closer to Mark and Lily, she resolves to see them safely home. But can she hold onto her humanity in a world gone mad?

Excerpt from Blackout Trail

It wasn’t just our baggage carousel that had stopped; they all had. Both the overhead lights and the computer screens showing the baggage carousel assignments had gone dark too. The only light streamed in from the floor-to-ceiling windows lining the perimeter of the baggage claim area. Why hadn’t the emergency lights kicked on?

The automatic sliding doors had also stopped, confounding a gaggle of college kids trying to leave. Beyond the doors, an ominous stillness had replaced the constant bustle of parking shuttles, cars, and taxis creeping along the pickup lane. There should’ve been engine sounds. Horns. Something. Now there were just a bunch of confused and pissed-off people getting out of their vehicles.

Grumbling from the other passengers gave way to a stunned hush. Panic bubbled just beneath the surface. You couldn’t set foot in an American airport these days without being bombarded with reminders of terrorism. Everyone looked at each other, the same question written on our faces: Was this some kind of attack? What should we do? I expected some sort of alert or explanation over the loudspeaker, telling everyone to remain calm, but none came.

A thunderous crash from the opposite end of the terminal had me ducking and covering my head. Metal screeched on metal, accompanied by the tinkle of shattered glass and an ear-splitting grinding sound. A chorus of terrified cries erupted around me. I’ll admit it—I screamed too. I caught a glimpse of a plane fuselage crashing through the airport ceiling before plowing into the ground.

Interview with Linda Naughton

-What inspired you to become a writer?

Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve loved telling stories. The first ones I remember writing were kid mysteries in the vein of Encyclopedia Brown. Later, I got into fan fiction, role-playing games (which are really just a form of improv storytelling), and technical writing. There’s just something about the written word that always grabbed me.

-If you could visit your book’s world for a day, what one thing would you do?

Hide! I’m not really built for an apocalypse. 🙂

My prior novel was set on Mars, though, and it would be cool to do some sightseeing there. Maybe visit places like Mars’ grand canyon.

-It’s two in the morning. What does your protagonist reveal in confidence? (Don’t worry, we won’t tell.)

Anna might let slip that she likes the short-term assignments of aid work because the idea of putting down roots scares her.

-Which of your characters would you go out for drinks with?

I think Anna would be fun to hang out with. She’s probably got a lot of interesting stories from traveling all around the world.

-You’re in a tavern, and a dwarf challenges you to a duel. What do you do?

I posed this question to my kids. My daughter suggests my only hope is to outrun them. My son thinks I might have a chance if I turned it into a drinking duel, which is apparently a thing for dwarves in Warhammer? (No idea—he’s the dwarf lore expert of the family.) I’d still lose, but might survive.

Clearly, my kids have the utmost confidence in my fighting prowess.

-Is there a genre you could never write? Which and why?

Horror. Supernatural stuff has never interested me, and I don’t like anything too gory. Even my medical scenes don’t have much blood and guts.

About Linda Naughton

author Linda Naughton

Linda Naughton has been writing stories for as long as she can remember. She is the author of several novels, children’s books, and the blog Self-Rescuing Princesses. A proud geek and gamer girl, she enjoys sci-fi, disaster movies, and role-playing games. She is a software engineer, paramedic, and mother of two.


Linda Naughton will be awarding a $15 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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9 thoughts on “Interview+Giveaway: Blackout Trail by Linda Naughton

  1. Good evening, if given the choice, would you like to see Blackout Trail made into a movie or a TV mini-series?

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