Friday, September 28, 2012

Micro Interview: Roxane Gay

We'll wrap up our WORDHARVEST micro interviews with Roxane Gay, author of Ayiti. I want to take a moment to thank Roxane and all the WORDHARVEST readers for taking the time to answer my questions. This is going to be a great reading, folks! Okay, let's hear from Roxane.

Ninth Letter: How do you prepare for a reading? Any pre-show rituals? 

Roxane Gay: Sometimes I vomit. Sometimes I drink. Sometimes I just pretend I'm not actually going to have to read before an audience. None of these work very well.

9L: When deciding which material to read, do you try to anticipate or take into account how the audience might react to what you read based on the event or venue? 

RG: I definitely think about audience at readings. Writing should entertain, particularly when being read aloud so I try to blend funny, shorter pieces with my more serious stories so that people can have a good time and not feel like OMG I AM AT ANOTHER LITERARY READING.

9L: What's one of your favorite moments from a reading, either yours or one you've attended?

RG: My favorite moment was at the Literary Death Match 200 at AWP 2012, during the spell off. My friend and I spelled Dostoevsky with an e but the host thought it was spelled with a y. An audience member Googled and found out that the name is spelled both ways and instead of losing LDM, I won! A close second is when I read at Sunday Salon in NYC and read a story about expired yogurt and a woman in the audience got visibly nauseous. Good times. As an audience member, it's always electric to see Scott McClanahan or Amelia Gray read.

WORDHARVEST starts at 4pm on Saturday, September 29, at Cowboy Monkey in Champaign, IL. More details about the event can be found here. Hope to see you tomorrow!

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