If you could cook dinner for any author, dead or alive, who would it be? What would you make?
George R.R. Martin could probably fill an entire novel with descriptions of food taken from his Song of Ice and Fire series. I’ve been watching a lot of Top Chef and Great British Baking Show lately, so I’d like the challenge of cooking an entire tasting menu for him!
What scares you the most about the writing process? How do you combat your fears?
The starting. The sitting straining searching. The staring at a screen or notebook for over an hour only to realize what is there is not good. You might think it’s not as big an issue when writing petite poems, but with the limited space and emphasis on word choice it can be even more painful.
Who is your biggest literary crush, author or character?
Elizabeth from Robert Munsch’s The Paper Bag Princess. When she turned down Ronald at the end of the story I fell smack in love.
What books are on your nightstand?
I am currently reading Communion by TJ Beitelman (inspiring at bedtime), Thirteen Chairs by Dave Shelton (too scary for bedtime!), and The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden (calming at bedtime). Some old favorites I return to often are Mark Z. Danielewski’s House of Leaves and Once A Runner by John L. Parker, Jr.
Where do you get your ideas? What inspires you?
Life. Emotions. Many ideas come from working as an elementary school teacher for over a decade - I wake up every day not knowing exactly what will happen. Other ideas come from current events, family, travel and living in the woods.
I am also inspired by stories within stories, like the Deathless Man in Tea Obreht’s The Tiger’s Wife, Louis Thanksgiving in Karen Russell’s Swamplandia!, and the flashbacks in Louis Sachar’s Holes. I’m inspired to experiment with how to achieve that in short poems.
Favorite punctuation mark? Why?
Definitely an ellipsis . . . I love how it evokes an ergodic response from the reader. When you see it, you slow down your eyes and inner thoughts at the same time - very powerful magic for an author to achieve through three little dots.
What book were you supposed to read in high school, but never did?
The Grapes of Wrath - and shame on me. I had just read The Catcher in the Rye and fell so deeply in love with its angst and anger toward “phony” people that it was hard for my rigid, teenage self to go through any book with religious connotations so closely tied to it.
What inanimate object would you thank in your acknowledgements?
Tree House Beer.
Why do you write? The first 5 words that come to mind. Go.
We’re all in this together.
If you could write an inspirational quote on the mirrors of aspiring writers, what would you write?
Through . . .
David Wasserman is the author of Tiny Footcrunch, a poetry collection set to release on April 30, 2018. You can pick up a copy on our site or at any major retailer.
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