In our conversation amidst the bustle of Sunday supper at the Heathman Hotel, Ben Marcus explains the nature of experiment in his work, how the teaching of creative writing inspires and also corrodes its practice, and the typecasting of MFA programs. (36 min 54 sec)
Episode 13: Ben Marcus (36 min 54 sec)
Portland Wizard World is this weekend at the Oregon Convention Center. Saturday I’ll be on this panel moderated by Danny Fingeroth, alongside Diana Schutz, Perrin Kerns, Katya Amato, Susan Kirtley and John Holt:
12:30 – 1:15 p.m.: GETTING RESPECT: COMICS GO TO COLLEGE
Comics and graphic novels have come into their own as subjects worthy of—indeed, demanding—attention from academia. Historians and cultural theorists teach courses, hold conferences, and publish books on various aspects of sequential art; colleges and universities teach courses in comics as literature and social history, as well as how to make them. Here to give an overview of various ideas about and approaches to comics studies are a cross-section of comics scholars and teachers, including: Diana Schutz (Dark Horse executive editor and instructor at Portland Community College), Trevor Dodge (Clackamas Community College), Perrin Kerns (Marylhurst University), Katya Amato (Portland State University), and Susan Kirtley (Portland State University). The panel is moderated by Danny Fingeroth (Disguised as Clark Kent). OREGON BALLROOM 202.
Eric Westerlind of The Bacon Review not only selected my short story "We Always Just Say Catastrophic" for TBR’s new issue, but also wrote these incredibly lovely words to introduce it:
Natalie Boxnard? Val Talamander? Feels like Dodge either just hopped out of Infinite Jest or any Pynchon piece and decided to turn the respective inspiration towards a night at the Sadie Hawkins dance.
Make peace with the parenthetical here, trust that the man’s cyclonic references and rabbit holes will deliver you something not entirely so much character as characters-crafted. The spine of this piece has many vertebrae. Jokes aplenty, or truths aplenty, and what horrible humor he finds in the bloated-Cheerio color hair and Izod-sported cast reeks of a profound seriousness.
Everyone’s got a stake in this thing.
To be savored for deftness of sentence structure, world-building, and rainbow-broad scope of scene. Take notes on the semi-colon. Mark well that not all heroes have to lead to dance.