Tuesday, April 4, 2023

Q&A with Allison Whittenberg




Allison Whittenberg is the author of the story collection Carnival of Reality. Her other books include the forthcoming novella Sane Asylum.


Q: Over how long a period did you write the stories in your collection?


A: The span of this collection dates back to 2001 when I was in my 20s. I actually wrote "Why Didn't You Call Me, 9/11?" in real-time, just a few months after that horrific event. 


Q: How was the book's title chosen, and what does it signify for you?


A: The title signifies how life tends to hit me. I'm one of those people who can't grasp life as it happens. I find many events swirling about me that I don't "get" until I have time to process them. So life is like attending a carnival full of (both good and bad) chaos.


Q: How did you decide on the order in which the stories would appear in the book?  


A: There is a seemingly random quality to my stories -- a kind of anything can happen. I tried to move from a traveling story, "Ride the Peter Pan," to more "homeish" stories toward the end of the collection.


Q: What do you hope readers take away from your stories?


A: Well, it's not every day "quieter" characters like mine are spotlighted. I hope readers get a chuckle at some of the passages and I hope I give readers something to think about. 


Q: What are you working on now?


A: I am cooking up a memoir. I never thought I would write one but I am and I find it quite freeing to have my say without the fiction filter.


Q: Anything else we should know?


A: I have a novella, Sane Asylum (Apprentice House), coming out in May and a poetry collection, Driving with Poetic License (Cornerstone Press), due out in 2024.


--Interview with Deborah Kalb

No comments:

Post a Comment