Amy Eggert talks about her writing that straddles and tilts between prose and poetry. She reads one of her more poetry-like pieces, and we talk about some pieces that are more like prose fiction. We also talk a lot about her interest in trauma and the literature of traumatization.
Jane Carman's writing falls between genres, overlaps them, or hybridizes them. Is this fiction, poetry, non-fiction, theory? Conventional categories and familiar reading strategies?--Why bother with those? Anyway, she talked some about her writing (whatever one might try to call it), about the Publications Unit at Illinois State University, and about teaching experimental writing in freshman composition classes.
In Brian Hedgepeth's office at Illinois State University, we talked about Brian's poetry, about literary publishing, and about Word Bombing--a series of poetry performance events that he organizes in Bloomingtohn-Normal.
Over in the Coffeehouse in Normal, Xuxa Rodriguez and I talked about her poetry, the performance poetry scene in Bloomington-Normal, fashion imagery in Seventeen magazine, and the crucial difference between the cultures of Florida and Illinois.
Evan Nave and I talked about his poetry (of which he read us some really cool samples) as well as what it's like growing up in a small prairie city like Bloomington, Illinois and how that has influenced his writing and his thinking generally. We also talked about his interest in African American literature, which he reads through the lens of hip hop.
Andy writes mostly (but not exclusively) genre fiction, and we talked about his science fiction novel Under a Cloven Moon and his Western novel For Evil to Prosper. We talked about how he started writing in those genres and some of the things he's hoping to accomplish in them.
Wassim Elhouar talked about his second short story collection, Mouth of God, Light of Infinity, especially the masterful handling of emotional tone in that work. We also talked about his current project, an updated version of his first collection and some about his new publishing project, Monolith Books..
Ruben Quesada and I had a very enjoyable conversation at his home in Champaign. We talked about how he's used his interests in science and art in his poetry as well as his experiences editing Codex Journal, a magazine that publishes via QR codes. Ruben teaches English at Eastern Illinois University.