Friday, October 21, 2011




Thank you Chris for allowing us this interview, how did you get started writing?

In grade three, we had to write a poem. Mine was about the family dog, Rexie. (Note to teachers everywhere: yes, that assignment will change at least one of your students' lives!)

If you had to choose one of your books to date that you think is your best, which one would it be and why?

dreaming of kaleidoscopes or Soliloquies: the lady doth indeed protest. In both, the poetry is excellent. (She says, immodestly.) In UnMythed and Paintings and Sculptures, I think I've often sacrificed the poetry for the point.

And putting Soliloquies in that favourite list is a little bit strange, since I'm not really a fan of Shakespeare. I read his stuff in high school and university, and, later, had to teach it, but I never read it for my own personal pleasure. I think probably that was because I found his women so irritating. Hence, Soliloquies. MyLady MacBeth wouldn't kill herself; it doesn't make sense; she's such a conniving bitch. And my Ophelia wouldn't be such a simpering doormat. And Juliet, well, Juliet just wants to have sex. (Note to high school English teachers - use "Ophelia" when you teach Hamlet or "Portia" when you teach The Merchant of Venice. I guarantee your class will come alive.)

It seems that quite a bit of your writing has undertones of the old prose style, tell us who your inspirations are.

I think you're right about that. Even my poetry is prose-y (exceptions noted above!).

But I'm not aware of having any inspirations. I'm sure I'm influenced by everything I've read, but I'm not consciously aware of that. I live a very solitudinous life, and I've often invented the wheel - how clever am I! That's the downside. When I submitted "I am Eve" (from Thus Saith Eve - a collection of epistles 'written' by women of the Bible - as if they were feminist) to a magazine or journal, it was rejected because someone else had already said/done what I'd said/done, and I was totally unaware of that. Perhaps if I had been aware, I might have taken it further, gone beyond. It's important to stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before if we are to see further. (The upside of living an insular life is the same as the downside - you're not influenced by others. And so can pursue your genuine, unmanufactured, interests...)

What various genres have you written in?

Poetry, prose (short stories and prose pieces - the pieces in Satellites aren't stories per se - no plot, characters dialoguing, etc. - so I call them prose pieces), drama. The soliloquies have been performed, in fact, most recently by Venus Theatre in Laurel, Maryland. I've woven them together, overlapped the voices, so Juliet bounces off what Kate has said, and Portia takes up the thread, and so on. It worked out better than I thought! (Maybe that's just a measure of the commonality of sexist's always the same old shit!) There's been interest by companies in Ohio and New York (Judith Shakespeare). (Note to directors - consider it!) (Note to actresses - they make great audition pieces your judges will not have heard before!)

What are some of your greatest accomplishments to date?

Well, I'd like to consider dreaming and Soliloquies in that list!

What are you working on now?

Snow White Gets Her Say will be coming out in December. It's like Thus Saith Eve but dealing with the women of fairy tales.

What would their stories be like if they had a feminist consciousness?

And I've just started a novel, tentatively titled August. A piece of extended introspection, of 'how did I get here from there' thing. A common question, I'm sure, at several points in our lives...

Who are your greatest supporters where your writing is concerned?

My English teacher, Mr. Feeney. No, seriously, he's just found me after thirty-some years, and we're corresponding. It's amazing. He chose three books of poetry as the book prize for my achieving the highest mark in Grade 13 English or some such way back when, and he's delighted to be reading my stuff, now, after all these years. I'm as delighted to be able to show him my stuff.

Where do you see your writing taking you in the future?

Odd question. I don't see my writing as taking me anywhere. I just don't see it that way.

Where can we find your books?

smashwords, amazon, barnesandnoble, and other online stores for the published stuff

and there's a lot of other stuff on my website - - excerpts from my short story collection Particivision and other stories and a few others bits and pieces that haven't 'fit' in any of my published collections

if you can't find something, email me -

Do you have any advice you'd like to share with other authors?

No. Sorry, I typed something here three times then deleted it. It feels to presumptuous for me to be giving advice to other authors!

Thank you again for the time to interview you, I hope to be able to do so again in the future!

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