Have I been missing? Umm, yes. NaNo, Thanksgiving, still (yes, people, STILL) working on formatting the enhanced multimedia eBook of Rich Fabric.
But, I am so excited to end this first year of Southern Creatives with a wonderful interview with Janet Nodar, a southern writer and poet.
Yes, this is a photo of Janet flying through the air – brave woman!
1. Do you consider yourself a “southern writer” or a writer from the south? Why? And, what do you see as the difference between the two?
I guess I’m a southern writer; I’m fascinated by the region’s quirks and language, and have been since I moved to Mobile in the 80s with my husband, who is a southern boy. I grew up a military brat with roots in the southwest, so the deep south was an alien and fascinating land to me. I prepared for it by reading a lot of Faulkner. Maybe not the most practical approach.
I’ve been here long enough that I can say ‘fixin’ to’ without any self-consciousness. However, although I love the verb ‘tump,’ I can’t use it without feeling silly. I do think you have to be born here to be able to tump without thinking it through first.
2. Who is your favorite southern writer/work and why?
Hard question. I have to revert to Flannery O’Connor. I love her sardonic humor, her skill with the telling detail, her ability to surprise.
3. Congratulations on the publication of your short story collection! How did you choose these pieces?
They seemed the most finished and least embarrassing. Several of them have been published before, in magazines ranging from GSU Review to Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine, and a few have been anthologized. Of course, once they were published they kind of disappeared into the ether. Putting them together in a collection seemed like a nice way to bring them back to life.
I wrote a new story for a recurring character, Kristal Gibson Jaramillo, when local publisher Mod Mobilian decided to print a physical book.
4. What projects do you have coming up in the future?
Poetry — something I haven’t written in years — keeps floating to the surface. That may be a new direction for me, at least for now, and a way to meet my craving for a creative outlet. I have a demanding job editing and writing for a business publication, and it tends to eat up my capacity for long-form writing.
5. Favorite southern tradition(s)?
Well, I live on the Gulf Coast, where we have Mardi Gras, which is so much fun. My kids flat do not understand parades where people don’t throw. What a ridiculous waste of time that seems.
In particular, I love Mobile’s crazy Joe Cain Day bacchanalia, which happens the Sunday before Fat Tuesday. It’s got to be one of the most idiosyncratic hoedowns in the universe.
Connect with Janet here:
Thanks to Janet for being my last Southern Creatives guest of 2012 – our inaugural year – go us, go!