Category Archives: Giraffe People

On hatred of the artist as a young person

I was listening to Neil Gaiman discuss why he waited to write the Graveyard Book until he was a good enough writer to do the story justice. He told about two aborted attempts to get into the characters. The years of thinking it had taken … Read more

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An old injury

You are so tired. Asleep, sometimes, with the dogs flanking you, early in the evening. Netflix asking if you want to continue. The air oppressive; fires in every direction.

And one day you do push-ups. You press against the floorboards. Against the weight of your … Read more

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Get Lit!

In 1998, Eastern Washington University’s Press and the Creative Writing Department sponsored a literary festival that would become Get Lit! At the time, I was a graduate student, and couldn’t afford to pay $10 for the events, so we worked the box office instead. That … Read more

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What is your tone?

I didn’t really get tone until college. What is the author’s attitude, they’d ask us on tests. How the fuck should I know? Why can’t we just read it and have our own attitudes?

But I get it now. It’s not much of a conversation … Read more

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In defense of Meghan

In my interview with Merry Gangemi¬†on Woman-Stirred Radio, one of the most interesting discussions is about the character of Meghan. Merry Gangemi, an astute and fascinating interviewer, held the perspective that Meghan is irritating and doesn’t know her self. I’ve spent the week considering … Read more

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Teen up

One of the many reasons I’m drawn to teen protagonists is that they have the benefit of being unformed while still deserving our sympathy. We expect teenagers to be selfish and egocentric. It is all about them. And if they can work through that shit … Read more

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The plain plane

Tonight I’m talking with the Queer Theory class at Eastern Washington University. Tomorrow at dawn, Mary and I fly to New Orleans for the Saints and Sinners Literary Festival. It’ll be our first plane trip together to the city where I became certain I’d marry … Read more

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He’s at the opposite pole from where I am

He’s the first hand raised in the audience and wants to know why I think Canada is so much more tolerant of gay people than the United States. Afterward, he’s the first to have his book signed. “I want you to know,” he says, “that … Read more

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Please praise what you love

I used to dread the question: What’s your book about?

Um. It’s a kind of love story. (Red Audrey.) It’s a tragedy. About martyrdom. And family.(Field Guide.) Yes. Yes, way to pitch, Jill Malone. But now, I look forward to you asking because fuck, I’m … Read more

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Just a note

Many thanks to Women and Words for posting my guest blog about Giraffe People today. This has been quite a week. My second novel, A Field Guide to Deception, won the Great Northwest Book Festival, which is particularly exciting because I can’t think about … Read more

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