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10 Questions for Christopher Schmidt

- By Marissa Perez

Aristotle imagined that red occured when "luminous transparency is covered by a thin burning smoke." In California, in the Amazon, wherever forest fires spread, visions of a red future multiply. "With all the dust and smoke in the air, the world will begin to look different," writes one reporter.
—from "Fugitive Reds," Volume 62, Issue 3 (Fall 2021)

Tell us about one of the first pieces you wrote.
In college I wrote a poem about the oboe. Or perhaps it was a poem that used the oboe as a metaphor. Clearly, the poem itself was trash. What remains indelible to me is the word I lifted—daedal—from a then unpublished poem by Elizabeth Bishop. As transgressions go, it’s mild stuff. Yet...


10 Questions for Carly Joy Miller

- By Marissa Perez

Meanness is not the only way to access it.

I grew adjacent to Christ: knew him purely by name and sight (limbs on the patibulum)

The crossbar—the patibulum—is an incorrect representation.
—from "A Humility Essay," Volume 62, Issue 3 (Fall 2021)

Tell us about one of the first pieces you wrote.
My second-grade teacher let me continue writing a Space Jam fan fiction after craft time was over! I also wrote Sailor Moon fan fiction in my early middle school years. And for poems, I remember an orange notebook I would carry with me—lots of song lyrics, flowers and investigating my feelings a la Whitman’s “Song of Myself.”

What writer(s) or works have...


10 Questions for Alex Mouw

- By Marissa Perez

The manatee's strangest feature is she's always
working, seven straight ruminant hours pawing

shallow floors for mangrove leaves and pickerel weed.
Even sleeping half the day, each quarter hour
—from "Anxiety Medication," Volume 62, Issue 3 (Fall 2021)

Tell us about one of the first pieces you wrote.
In elementary school I wrote a story about a kid who gets lost at a candy store inside a strip mall. I don’t remember much else about it, but surely it was harrowing and sugary, and probably a troll was involved.

What writer(s) or works have influenced the way you write now?
I’m a serial imitator, so I can’t read a book of poems without trying to copy that person, mostly...


10 Questions for Seulmi Lee

- By Edward Clifford

This is a story of a mole.

It was about the size of a pea, light aubergine in color. He still remembers how it felt under his fingers: how it stood, pert and taut, when pressed down; yet how pliantly it leaned over when caressed sideways. A little oddity he would always remember her by.
—from "Me, Myself, and Mole," Volume 62, Issue 3 (Fall 2021)

Tell us about one of the first pieces you wrote.
“Virgin Ghost on North Korean Border” is the second short story I wrote a few years ago. The story now has become the opening chapter of my novel “8 Lives of a Century-Old Trickster. (Forthcoming from Harper, 2023 spring.) The short story was inspired by my father’s childhood. His hometown was very close to...


10 Questions for David Ricchiute

- By Marissa Perez

Near a creek where his mother said don't dare go, a young boy spots a garter snake, jaws surrounding a half-swallowed worm, compelling the boy to bend at the knees, starting the descent toward the lumbering snake. It's then that he buckles from weakness in his legs, ignored for days as a nuisance that passes. . .
—from "Indifferent Limbs," Volume 62, Issue 3 (Fall 2021)

Tell us about one of the first pieces you wrote.
A first story, drafted in beginner’s haste, saw many iterations and an avalanche of richly-deserved rejections. But in the early 1990s, the poet and editor A. Wilbur Stevens plucked a version from the slush pile at Interim, a semi-annual he’d resurrected from years of dormancy. Truth is...

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