November 14, 2014

Much of your work contains natural and pastoral imagery. “Forced Bloom,” for instance, which appears on the Academy of American Poets’ website, describes a woman cutting back the branches of a forsythia so that the blooms will return later on. What draws you to this natural imagery? Why are you so concerned with it?


Forced Bloom” is about hands, about touch, physical contact.  It blends several scenes into a kind of narr...

November 5, 2014

Congratuations! You’ve won Louisville Literary Arts’ Writer’s Block/Memorious Poetry Contest. Ironically, you typically write fiction. What inspired you to compose this work as poetry? What brought you to the subject matter? 


In July, I spent a month in residence at the American Antiquarian Society as a Charlotte and Robert Baron Fellow, researching piracy in the early eighteenth century for the novel I'm working on. When I ar...

November 1, 2014


1. Why do you think that character is the foundation of a novel, rather than plot or setting?


To engage oneself with fiction, I think, is to actively seek out that common emotional well that a writer must set.  Readers are seeking a sort of universal humanity that very particularly drawn characters can offer; readers are seeking to be able to identify, in a novel or story's characters, that elusive, transcendent thing...

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