Newfound Journal Interviews

 

Spring 2017 Issue, Other Worlds:

Quiet Glory, Crouching Shadows, Little Wish: An Interview with Sherrie Flick

Award-winning fiction writer, food writer, freelance writer, and copy editor, Sherrie Flick is the author of flash fiction chapbook “I Call This Flirting,” “Reconsidering Happiness: A Novel,” and most recently, the short story collection “Whiskey, Etc.” (Queen’s Ferry Press, 2016)... Gardens, women, and music made wild; places and prospects made uncomfortable, but where one wants to linger; pie and tea and bourbon; cruel women who like men, but prefer solitude; dogs and cats and possums; moments, moods, couples, desire, and loneliness—these and more infuse energy and attitude into the 57 stories of “Whiskey, Etc.”

The Quiet Power of Small-Town Stories: An Interview with Margo Orlando Littell

Margo Orlando Littell’s debut novel, “Each Vagabond by Name,” is an Appalachian tale of longing and loss, belonging and isolation, desperation and deliverance. Its characters confess the truth of life in the small coalmining town of Shelk, Pennsylvania, their simple, hardworking existence threatened by a band of thieves who have pitched camp in the nearby hills. Zaccariah Ramsy, Vietnam veteran and local bar owner, and Stella Vale, librarian and Ramsy’s once-and-eventual lover, establish the novel’s tone as townspeople who remain outside the spoken and unspoken rules of what it is to belong and not belong.

Landscape of Exile, Imagination, & Memory: An Interview with Anne Raeff

Winner of the 2016 Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction, Anne Raeff’s “The Jungle around Us” is a collection, honest and rare, its quietude and intimacy leading to unspoken, unforgotten places where insects roar, sirens sound, and “scratchy, old 78s” play. It is clear the author cares deeply about the characters in these stories. To read this collection is to be immersed in their lives, to become caught up in their thoughts and actions, their climates and countries, their memories and dreams.

 

Autumn 2016 Issue:

Timeless & Changing Vietnam: An Interview with Catherine Karnow

Catherine Karnow, a visionary photographer for National Geographic, Smithsonian, GEO, and other international publications, as well as a teacher of worldwide photography workshops, continues the artistic legacy of her father, Stanley Karnow, acclaimed journalist and author of the book and television series, “Vietnam: A History.” While she has witnessed the world via camera lens, Vietnam is the focus of her exhibition and book, “Vietnam: 25 Years Documenting a Changing Country.” Her photographs of the people of Vietnam, documenting the country’s sweeping changes between 1990 and 2014, are breathtaking, emotional portraits of Vietnamese lives: the “Woman on the Train,” the “Doi Moi” economic policies and the Viet Kieu culture, the “Funeral Procession of General Giap,” and the legacies of “the American War” captured in the faces of Amerasians and victims of Agent Orange. From these portraits and landscapes, an understanding of the photographer’s deeply personal relationship with Vietnam comes forth in rich, vital, and textured layers.

Antihero, Comic Hero, American Hero: An Interview with Leland Cheuk

Leland Cheuk—novelist, author, writer, survivor, stand-up comic—has contributed to the immigrant tale with an antihero for the ages. In his novel, “The Misadventures of Sulliver Pong,” an uproarious and rarefied version of antihero has planted his feet firmly on the crisscrossing roads of American literature. Sulliver Pong, our (anti)hero, while sitting out the final eighteen months of a four-year sentence in Bordirtoun Correctional, tells his story from the very beginning, reaching back through generations of family history, “once and for all.” Chinese-American history, from illegal opium-smuggling, imperial times in the port city of Guangzhou, China through the immigrant experience of building railroads, bridges, and towns in the American West to the political corruption of contemporary Pongs, is carved from Cheuk’s sensibilities of combining identity and a particular kind of dark humor with character—yes, our (anti)hero, Sully—and the trainload of trouble thrown Sully’s way. The narrative that arises from this combination of historical and hysterical elements proclaims a modern take on the character-driven novel, one that questions all that is familial and decides a new fate. With barely a month since the publication of his short story collection, “Letters from Dinosaurs,” Cheuk considers the novel that was his first publication, one of great attention and praise.

 

Spring 2016 Issue, The Wild:

Mothers, Daughters, Lovers, Misfits: An Interview with Bonnie Jo Campbell

Bonnie Jo Campbell knows her way into the art of rural noir, her literary gaze on the landscape of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula spare with salvage yards and celery fields. Her stories are rich with raw, resilient, and untamed characters, each one coming to terms with whatever life has thrown her way. From those fiercely drawn in “Women and Other Animals” to those desperate and daring in “American Salvage,” the brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers, meth addicts, mechanics, lovers, hunters, circus performers, and serious misfits inhabiting these collections will us to lean in and know their stories, for these tales are given with grit and truth and are as real as they are wild. “Mothers, Tell Your Daughters,” Campbell’s latest collection, pulls us into the worlds of women we all know, daughters and mothers who might live next door, who breathe delicate, terrible, stunning secrets into our ears. And because the language is so surprising and the stories’ directions spin in startling and beautiful directions, we cannot stop listening.

 

Winter 2015 Issue:

ENGINE BOOKS SERIES

An Interview with Victoria Barrett, Publisher of Engine Books

Victoria Barrett, editor and publisher of Engine Books, is invested in literary worlds. The serious task of editing, design, and author- and story-centered publishing, as well as the commitment to publishing writing by women, is taken to new levels by this boutique press. To date, EB has published sixteen titles, including two of the books discussed in this issue of Newfound Journal: “You Are Free to Go” by Sarah Yaw and “Echolocation” by Myfanwy Collins.

An Interview with Myfanwy Collins

Myfanwy Collins is a novelist and short-story author who writes of the people and places she knows by memory and by heart—the hardworking and hard-worn of the Northeast, from the shorelines of Massachusetts to the Adirondacks in New York all the way up to Canada. Her novels “The Book of Laney” (Lacewing Books, 2015) and “Echolocation” (Engine Books, 2012) share vast and beautiful landscapes wrapped in ice and lit with moonlight; themes of loss, retribution, and recovery; and characters who track their way through violence to love.

An Interview with Sarah Yaw

Sarah Yaw’s debut novel, “You Are Free to Go” (Engine Books, 2014), winner of the 2013 Engine Books Novel Prize and the 2015 CNY Book Award for Fiction, is told in meticulous and measured layers, which are linked by the intersecting narratives of multiple characters. The novel’s incredible architecture is much like that of its fictional prison, the Hardenberg Correctional Facility: each confined cell containing one, usually two inmates; each row of cells set inside a block from the ground floor to the upper levels of the birdcage; each block a testing ground for society’s incarcerated.

 

Autumn 2015 Issue:

AFTER THE PARADE: An Interview with Lori Ostlund

Lori Ostlund is a writer whose prose is attentive and precise and streaked with wit, her characters well-mannered and seeking truths, their worlds complicated and lush. Her story collection, “The Bigness of the World,” winner of the 2008 Flannery O’Connor Award, leads us into unexpected places: those plateaus of childhood in which adults are sighted from below, each child’s perspective unique and filled with wonder and wide swathes of humor, and then on the backs and in the minds of women and men, across foreign terrain from Malaysia to Belize, from Bali to Spain to Morocco, circling back to Minnesota for grounding and good measure, emotional topographies charting the way.

THE BLUE GIRL: An Interview with Laurie Foos

“The Blue Girl,” Laurie Foos sixth novel, is told in the language of fairytales, immersed in metaphor, lyrical and leading to magical places, where magic is draped in sadness and secrets. The central story of the blue girl is told in the multiple voices of three mothers and their three daughters, each with the quiet desperation, longing, and immediacy of the present moment and her own unique perspective. Here, in this small lake town, Once Upon a Time is measured out in the same spoons and cups used for making moon pies, their sweet, rich denseness adding layers to the overlapping relationships within the story as each narrator reveals her part.

 

Spring 2015 Issue, Domesticity:

Where Stories Meet the Sea: An Interview with Mary Akers

Mary Akers is a writer who cares deeply for words, with a sense of how lining them up on the page precisely and thoughtfully creates voice, pushes boundaries, reveals the desires and dilemmas of her characters, and invites insight into physical and intuitive worlds. In her story collections, “Women Up on Blocks” and “Bones of an Inland Sea,” she traverses wide narrative territories—the entrapment of motherhood, the length of memory, the latticework of a dying coral reef, the emotional landscape of death, and the freeing depth of oceans.

 

Winter 2014 Issue:

REPAIRABLE MEN: An Interview with John Carr Walker

The stories of “Repairable Men,” John Carr Walker’s first collection (Sunnyoutside, 2014), are streaked with clarity, decision, and surprise. There is lightning in every one of the ten, the kind that travels sideways, striking in the most unexpected places—places along the West Coast, where raisin crops ripen in the sun or mildew and rot in the damp, where families try for understanding and conciliation and rarely end there, where objects are raised overhead, recalling lost opportunities, countries, minds. The characters here have dreams, grape knives, wolf pups, jack saws, wrenches, dead birds. Their tools are heavy, worn, close to grip, and the way they use them is brilliant and shocking. To read the stories of “Repairable Men” is to enter a world that is even more real than our own.

The Long Light of Prose: An Interview with Lee Martin

Lee Martin understands the language of landscape: the way light falls over a field with respect to the season, the differing sounds of neighborhoods in a small Midwestern town, the cold snap called blackberry winter, the idea of origins and belonging that all have to do with place. His short stories, novels, essays, and memoirs—“The Least You Need to Know” (Mary McCarthy Prize in Short Fiction winner), “The Bright Forever” (Pulitzer Prize finalist), “Break the Skin,” “From Our House,” “Such a Life,” and many others—transport one to the places of childhood, memory, understanding, misunderstanding, anger, and compassion with the clarity and patience of a man seriously devoted to words. Portraits of farmland and family, of seasons and time passing are revealed in the details: wheat kernels, killing frosts, marigolds and zinnias, the worn arms of a rocking chair, the trace of a smile. These details—perfectly placed, lingered over, returned to—ground us, allow us entry into and passage throughout the story.

 

Autumn 2014 Issue:

The Now and Forever of Luke B. Goebel–An Interview

Luke Goebel’s award-winning first novel, “Fourteen Stories, None of Them Are Yours,” shakes and rattles and trembles in your hands. From the first lines, the novel throws story at you, and you’d better watch your head. His voice grabs your wrist and promises everything and nothing. Words fly forward and backward—a lone eagle feather, a lost love, the moon, peyote, blanket flowers, myth, dogs, clouds, cigarettes, girls, chores, America—to speak and shout of loss and heartbreak. The ride is rough, but so is grief, and Luke Goebel, man-boy-kid of giant searching heart, knows how to tell this tale.


Hothouse Magazine Interviews

from THE POPPY: An Interview Series

archived in THUNDER ON A THURSDAY

THE FROM-AWAYS - A Novel of Maine - with CJ Hauser

THE SUDDEN AND STUNNING STORIES OF WITH ANIMAL - with Carol Guess & Kelly Magee

THE NEUTRAL GROUND - with Annie Bleecker

INSIDE TERMINATION DUST - with Susanna J. Mishler

POINTS OF CONNECTION - with Bich Minh Nguyen

HOTHOUSE ANNIVERSARY ALBUM - from Sugar to the Mountain - Reprise of 2013 - 14 Interviewees

NINE-STORY MOUNTAIN - with Augusta Thomson

FORT STARLIGHT: A Florida Story - with Claudia Zuluaga

NONTRADITIONAL: The Landscape of Homecoming - with Brian R. Hauser & Christina Xydias

THE COASTAL CONCERNS OF JOEANN HART - with JoeAnn Hart

THE GAZE OF EMILIE STAAT - with Emilie Staat

SURREALIST A.W. SPRAGUE II - with A.W. Sprague II

AMY WRIGHT: In the Garden - with Amy Wright

BRAD RICHARD: from Aubade to Bacchae - with Brad Richard

SHARON MILLAR: from Caribbean to Commonwealth - with Sharon Millar

MATTHEW DRAUGHTER: Vision and Voice - with Matthew Draughter

DOMA & THE ARTS REVISITED - a multi-voiced interview

TIM WATSON: A New Orleanian Now - with Tim Watson

BROOKLYN'S JAMEL BRINKLEY - with Jamel Brinkley

JENNIFER GENEST'S WORLDS AND WORDS - with Jennifer Genest

DOMA & THE ARTS - a multi-voiced interview

ANDREW LAM: A Voice from the Heart - Part 2 of an interview with Andrew Lam

ANDREW LAM: Language, Memory, Bliss - Part 1 of an interview with Andrew Lam

YOLANDA J. FRANKLIN: Palmettos, Porches, and Poetry - with Yolanda J. Franklin

An Interview with NATALIE YOUNG of Sugar House Review


An Interview with Ruvanee Pietersz Vilhauer - on her story "Craving" -  R.kv.r.y. Quarterly Literary Journal


Interviews on Stories

 

An Interview with KARIN C. DAVIDSON - on "Waking" - with the Fiction Editors of Rappahannock Review 

An Interview with KARIN C. DAVIDSON - on "Roadside Flowers" - by Mark Fabiano - R.kv.r.y. Quarterly Literary Journal

 


 

Featured Art

FIREPLACE TOOLS by Nancy Baron - from the series "The Good Life: Palm Springs"

Cover of Newfound Journal, Volume 6, Winter 2015