Meg Pokrass is the author of the new flash fiction collection Spinning to Mars. She also is the co-editor of the forthcoming collection Best Microfiction 2021. Her other books include The Dog Seated Next to Me, and her work has appeared in a variety of publications, including Washington Square Review and Electric Literature. She is based in the UK.
Q: Over how long a period did you write the pieces in your new collection, Spinning to Mars?
A: About 10 years. Some of the pieces in the collection are very old. Others are relatively new. I hadn’t been aiming for a collection with the pieces in Spinning to Mars. I didn’t have a conscious plan for them.
Finally, I saw that they belonged together, these tiny stories, and that they were loosely connected. They tell a longer story that could only be realized in moments. It’s strange and wonderful when this happens.
Q: What initially appealed to you about microfiction?
A: I am smitten with how good microfiction draws us into a feeling of intense collaboration between reader and writer, a place that is both private and shared.
Q: How was the book's title, Spinning to Mars, chosen, and what does it signify for you?
A: A girl’s father tells her, in the beginning, that he’s got a ride to Mars. He’s an untrustworthy dreamer. Not long after that, he deserts the family. The title signifies the ruined promise. But it’s also about the dream.
Q: You also have an edited work coming out soon, the Best Microfiction 2021 anthology. How did you choose the work that appears in the book?
A: This is our third year, and Gary Fincke and I are more excited than ever about 2021’s anthology. Our illustrious guest editor/judge Amber Sparks made the final selections.
Q: What are you working on now?
A: I’ve been involved in collaborative writing projects. A collection of fabulist pieces I co-wrote with Jeff Friedman will be published by Pelekinesis Press in 2022. Another book co-written with Aimee Parkison, Disappearing Debutantes, will be published by Outpost 19 in 2023.
--Interview with Deborah Kalb