I’m really excited to share this: My alma mater, Columbia College Chicago, interviewed me about getting my debut novel Here’s Waldo signed for publication! In it, I talk about the genesis of the novel, its connection to my own life, and how instrumental Columbia was in the creation of the book. The link to the full interview is here!
I feel like I’ve got everything I always wanted. It’s a strange feeling, a foreign one, of not wondering when the other shoe will drop, not even thinking about shoes, rather kicking them off to finally relax a little. It first started to hit when I withdrew my manuscript from every other place I’d submitted it to, when I let these places know that I’d just signed with another press. It was sending those withdrawal emails, and it was realizing that I wouldn’t have to send this novel out anymore. I’d done it. It was finally getting published.
I go back mentally to the places I was at when writing it, diving back, taking half my lunch break to cloister myself in an unclaimed cubicle at work and pop open my laptop, squeeze out a little more writing time before going back to administrative tedium again. It was finding gaps in the story, holes in the memory, and filling those holes with something, dirt if I had to, because having something to remember is better than nothing at all. It was taking walks till exhaustion and listening to the same hundred or so songs over and over until their rhythms and patterns were baked into the story, into me, and I could taste freedom from the pain if only I kept writing about it.
I can track mental states in the pictures from that time, in the drafts saved in sequential order, cross reference with journal entries if I’m feeling particularly masochistic, but really just trying to get a snapshot of where I was then and how I was able to sustain a mental deep-dive of myself for that long. Because it was one of the most useful things I’ve ever done in my life, but it also nearly destroyed me. And so I’d touch on those images in the book, looking back on the past and risking salt-pillar-transformation, writing and rewriting traumatic memories until dissociation became the norm and it was all almost normal. We return to the thing that hurt us because that can become all we know. And that’s the tricky thing, because that’s also exactly how we beat it. We face it, we plumb the depths, we walk into that great dark, and we don’t stop walking until we come out on the other side.
I came out on the other side with this book, and now it’s going to be published. There are professional artists, designers, and editors working to bring this to life. When that’s done, there will be machines that will print it, and digital versions optimized for people to read however they want. I have to say these things because the unreality is still there, shock in the best possible way, and to say it is to realize that it really is happening. After so much time, so much work, the thing that I dreamed about is finally a reality.
It makes me so happy to share this editor interview I did with Six Questions For… When I was a younger writer who was still chasing his first publication, the editor interviews on SQF were like my bible. So the fact that I’ve since been published in the places I’ve been and am now an editor myself and had SQF reach out to me for an interview… It’s absolutely incredible. The link to the interview is here, and you can check out (mac)ro(mic) here! 😁
The latest issue of Metonym Literary Journal has some of my writing in it! Linkage here! Happy Friday! Aaahhhhhhh!!!!
My short story “Asheville” just went live in Issue Five of Bending Genres! Ahhh!!!
Good news! My story “Sit” was just accepted for publication in a magazine called FIVE:2:ONE. The story goes live June 23rd, and as a bonus they asked if I’d do an audio or video reading of the story to accompany the text. As a “thank you” to all of you awesome folks who read and support my work, I want to show you the video early:
That feeling when you find out that one of your stories was listed as the best story that reviewer read that week, and it’s on a column for freaking Ploughshares! To all you wonderful peeps who read/like/share my work, thank you so much! You’re all wonderful human beings who I’m glad to share words with. 🙂
Eunoia Review just published one of my stories, and five more are on the way! I’ll be posting the other five as they come out in the next few days. The teaser:
You see me scraping off newspaper gunk and watching you through the holes I punched in the classifieds and you make that snort that’s meant to appease me and I say I could sit here right now and transfigure to something like eternity because we’re all made of stars and if someone thinks something hard enough they can make it happen…
Click here to read the rest of the story on Eunoia Review’s site! I’ve been reading and enjoying Eunoia Review for so long, so this feels like a dream come true. Thanks, as always, for your reads and shares!
One of my stories was just accepted for publication in Thrice Fiction, a litmag with a 6% acceptance rate! And they sell physical editions too, so I’ll get to see my work in print for the first time this August! So thankful/happy right now, it’s not even funny. In case I don’t say it enough, to all of you reading this: thank you so much for all your support. You fantastic people are what make this whole storytelling thing fun. So thank you, thank you, thank you! And be sure to check out some of the great work they’ve already published!