Category Archives: Blog

Strategy first. Everything Else Follows.

“Don’t let tactics interfere with strategy.” Mark Ritson on Brand Management is how I think when I’m doing my job. I learned how to do it through trial and error. Glad I’m doing it the way it’s taught.

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My Lost Stories

I completely forgot that a lot of my fiction is located on this site. There’s some stuff there that’s now lost—the magazines went out of business. Stories like this one: The Town Secrets by Meakin Armstrong Grace works at Minot’s Drug Store. … Continue reading

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Guernica and Best American Short Stories

A Guernica story by Jocelyn Nicole Johnson was just selected for Best American Short Stories, edited by Roxane Gay. So pleased. Read it here:

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My Grandmother the Flirt

My grandmother was a Southern woman who dropped out of school to raise her four brothers and sisters when her parents died. I’m vague on the details, but life was hard. She got the kids off the farm near McClellanville, … Continue reading

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Guns and Funerals

Fresh from getting my Columbia MFA, I was broke and in need of quick cash. I accepted a gig as a proofreader and editor of funeral brochures in Brooklyn. The company, located in a rambling warehouse off Gowanus Canal, was … Continue reading

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War on Christmas

When I was a kid in Japan (the child of a diplomat) the Canadian embassy invited the American kids over for a holiday party. Santa came and it was the first time I’d seen a real Santa up close. His … Continue reading

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Animal Sandwich

The best book clubs are located in peaceable kingdoms.

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My Second Mother

I was born the child of a diplomat in South Korea. My parents were more or less of the Mad Men generation, so my actual upbringing was outsourced to a nanny I called Miss Kim. Miss Kim fed me and … Continue reading

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A Pause While I Fiddle With This Site

My clips are best displayed over at Contently. I used to write for them fairly often and my portfolio looks much better over there.

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That’s What “They” Said…

You can now use “they,” instead of “she” and “he,” the AP says. They, them, their In most cases, a plural pronoun should agree in number with the antecedent: The children love the books their uncle gave them.They/them/their is acceptable … Continue reading

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Purity

The sun, though it passes through dirty places, yet remains as pure as before. — Sir E. Coke

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Interviewing Etgar Keret

He’s Israel’s top writer, a man whose work I adore—and I got to spend two hours with him for Guernica.  In America, where writers are preoccupied with the craft of writing, I always try to introduce this concept of the … Continue reading

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Mary Gaitskill at Disquiet

It was a real highlight: seeing Mary Gaitskill read from her upcoming novel, getting her to sign my books, and then going with her to see Fado at Disquiet. I was a visiting editor for the fifth annual conference in … Continue reading

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My Essay on Emanuel A.M.E. Church and Dylann Roof

I lived in Charleston, SC from when I was around 11 to 20 years old. I went to a private, all-white elementary school right next door to “Mother Emanuel,” Emanuel A.M.E. church. I wrote an essay about the #CharlestonShooting — … Continue reading

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The People’s Pervert: John Waters

I interviewed John Waters for Guernica. Now at sixty-nine (“an embarrassing age,” he said at a recent appearance in New York City, “I don’t even like the sex position”), John Waters seems to have a career on the upswing: he’s … Continue reading

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