About Me

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My work can be found in REAL: Regarding Arts and Letters, The Jabberwock Review, The Emerson Review, Storyglossia, The MacGuffin, Confrontation, Passages North, SmokeLong Quarterly, elimae, wigleaf, Pank, New Delta Review, and Gargoyle #57, among others. One of my stories has been translated into Farsi by Asadollah Amraee, and many others by Jalil Jafari, two of which have been published in the Iranian journal, Golestaneh Magazine. Currently, I'm an Associate editor for Narrative Magazine. In 2011, I was awarded the Carol Houck Smith Contributor Scholarship for the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Interview with Elizabeth Strout

at Failbetter

I love everything Elizabeth Strout writes.

In terms of process I'm quite interested in "Olive Kitteridge" being considered a hybrid, and in the reasons Elizabeth Strout gives for the structure. My other novel, not the one I drafted in March, but the one I've been working on for over two years now, has come to me in a similar fashion. And knowing that kind of hybrid isn't considered as marketable as a novel has done nothing to whip my muse into compliance. I'm not sure why the novel is coming to me through stories, perhaps because the span of time and the subject matter are daunting for me to handle in one neat line. Before I drafted this other novel, though, I thought it was a failing on my part of being able to write a normal novel. I'm proving that theory wrong. (I'm not talking about quality of content, mind you. That will remain to be seen.) And I'm beginning to understand that each project demands its own kind of attention and process.


No Name Me said...

Love this post, Katrina! I think we all struggle with form, and not every work behaves the same way as the next or last. My new work is coming to me in choppier ways, but I'll take what I can get!!!! :)

All Best,

katrina said...

Yes, taking what we can get is a great thing!

Mark Reep said...

New visitor, and entirely off-topic-
Just read 'Soap' at Wigleaf- wonderful piece, very moving. Looking forward to reading more of your work.

katrina said...

Thank you so much, Mark! I've been laid up with a nasty virus and your generous comment gave me a much-needed boost.

Mary Akers said...

Wonderful post--and so true. Form is not always something the writer can control--or I guess I should say it this way: "the most appropriate form for telling the story" can turn out to be something unexpected--even to the writer.

Tania Hershman said...

This is very interesting to me, as someone who up to this point has only written short stories. I read Olive Kittredge and, while I really liked the writing, was rather confused by it, it seemed to straddle the fence, and that, for me, coloured how I read it. I would rather it was an unlinked collection - or a novel. I loved the first story, loved it, and was disappointed that we never really came back to those characters. I think this is the danger in something sort of "in between".

But it also opened my eyes to different structures, and, as No Name Me says, "chopper" ways that things might come together. If I write something book-length, I sense that choppy is the only way it will get done!

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