Malahat Review volunteer Kyra Kristmanson talks with the issue #213 contributor about synesthesia, spoken word, and seeking older writings.
KK: There is a strong theme in “Fall fell and I dropped beneath the aspens,” of moving between the spiritual and the physical—sometimes they intertwine as they do with sound setting. Did you intend to create the comparison when you initially crafted the poem, or did it form as you wrote?
TB: Yes, this poem felt like a layering that formed as I wrote it. It actually came from an Instagram caption that began with “Fall fell and I dropped beneath the trees,” of a picture of me taking a walk into Stanley Park and then I had to get up and write the rest. It’s not often that a poem will be there for me to write out on the computer screen, but each line had its own form and breath that was cold autumn. When on the hunt for something deeper, spiritual connections to the physical landscape, it can’t help but be influenced by the noises I hear in this urban environment, how I feel and connect and am shocked from it frequently. I’m nonetheless a little better for having tried and the connection is still there, even if it’s hard to hear over the buzz.
Read the rest of Tawahum Bige's interview.
2021 Far Horizons Award: interview with judge Francine Cunningham
Malahat Review volunteer Stephen Leckie talks with the Far Horizons Award for Short Fiction contest judge about her upcoming collection of short stories, where her writing ideas come from, and her process for submitting to contests and regular submissions.
SL: Your stories have won awards and made shortlists in literary writing contests. What is your process for submitting your work?
FC: First thing I don’t do is write a new story for a contest, because that would mean for me that I am writing in a panic and it probably won’t be my best work. I instead look for the word length of a story contest and look to see if I have any stories in my completed edited file that fit that length, then I go look who the judges are and get a feel for their writing style. Contest submissions can add up really fast money-wise so I want to be smart in where I submit.
In terms of general submitting I read the magazine or journal to determine if my writing would fit what I think they’re looking for. Then it’s just luck of the slush pile. I also don’t send out brand new work, I instead always give a story a few years to simmer and be revised over and over before it gets into my completed edited file of stories. Once it’s in there though, I am very confident in the story and I like to have a bunch of ready-to-go stories at my disposal.
Read the rest of Francine Cunningham's interview.