The Blog

Interview with Carmen Maria Machado

Katlyn Williams

Carmen Maria Machado is the author of the acclaimed debut collection Her Body and Other Parties, a finalist for the National Book Award. Her stories have appeared in wide-ranging publications, including The New Yorker, Guernica, Granta, Best American Science Fiction and Horror, and VICE. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and the Clarion Science Fiction and Fantasy Workshop, Machado makes real a boundary-breaking assortment of extreme or extra-realist situations, like disappearing women stitched into formal gowns or dead girls and doppelgangers haunting Law & Order: SVU’s Detectives Benson and Stabler. Within these fantastical landscapes, Machado grounds her narrators, and thus her readers, in visceral emotion and human contact.


Kerry Hillis Goff

Years ago, when I read William Carlos Williams’s collection of poems Spring and All (1923), it was the first time I experienced a poet who tried to teach people how to read his poetry in his poetry. “So much depends” is the center argument of his book-length tutorial:

so much depends 

a red wheel

glazed with rain

beside the white

Pretty much, if any one of these objects in his poem were placed in a different scenario, our picture would change. That is why “so much depends.” With Williams, as with many Modernist writers who desperately wanted to be more direct, the objects inhabit a relativity. But being direct isn’t necessarily easy.

TS Eliot played around with Freud in his personas, like Prufrock measuring his life in coffee spoons.

Dejobaan Games and Popcannibal's ELEGY FOR A DEAD WORLD

Ian Faith

If you’ve been paying attention to video games at all over the last decade, you know that writing has become an integral part of the medium. Nearly every game from independent to big budget “triple A” studios, features some type of narrative, if only to justify its own mechanics. Although subject to skepticism by gamer culture, games within the so-called walking simulators genre like Gone Home and Firewatch, as well as Telltale Games’s point-and-click adaptations of The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones, are distinctly literary projects. Whether one conceives of the player as an actor within the drama articulating their desires through movement and dialogue, as a director deciding the outcomes of the plot, as an audience member experiencing the narrative, or all of the above, the literary influences on game development are obvious. 


Jack Smith

Author of two novels and story collections, Christine Sneed is a master of short as well as long fiction. It’s the inner spaces where Sneed truly excels, with a riveting prose style that captures the depths of her characters’ thoughts, feelings, and conflicted selves. The stories that make up her most recent collection The Virginity of Famous Men reveal an extraordinary range of types. Two stories revisit a theme played out fully in Sneed’s first novel, Little Known Facts: the issue of fame. 


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