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Interviews | Word Riot
Interviews | October 22, 2016

An Interview With Lucy K Shaw by Andrew Duncan Worthington

Andrew Duncan Worthington is the author of the novel WALLS (2014, Civil Coping Mechanisms) and the story collection Delete Space (forthcoming winter 2017, Monster House Press). His work has been published in Vice, Mr. Beller’s Neighborhood, Atticus Review, Vol.1 Brooklyn, The Fanzine, and other venues.

Interviews | May 19, 2016

Laura Elrick’s Propagation: A Conversation Between Angela Woodward and Cooper Renner

COOPER RENNER: Hello, Angela. It’s been a while since we’ve begun one of these conversations, and it seems to me you have been a world traveler since then. Tell me a little about your trip to Bali.

ANGELA WOODWARD: Could it have been that long? I was there in 2014. I had schemed an unpaid month-long leave from my college, and went to the Bali Purnati Center for the Arts. It’s an artist residency program that I had heard about some years earlier, from a painter friend. I’d wanted to go for years, and suddenly it panned out. I got

Interviews | August 16, 2015

A Conversation with Robert Shapard and Cooper Renner

Flash Fiction International: Very Short Stories From Around the World Edited by James Thomas, Robert Shapard and Christopher Merrill (Norton, 2015)

NB: While FFI’s publication by W.W. Norton, an independent but hardly small press, would normally put it beyond the purview of Word Riot, we’re making an exception because so many of the writers featured in the anthology began and still continue their careers in the pages of small press magazines and in collections from tiny literary presses.

COOPER RENNER: Hello, Robert. I’m really pleased that you have the time and willingness to talk about FFI with me. What I’d

Interviews | August 15, 2015

Women and the Curse of Fraudulence Syndrome by Christen Noel

Christen Noel writes and teaches in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula where she’s also an associate editor for Passages North and MFA candidate at Northern Michigan University. Most recently, her work can be found in The Rumpus, and Appalachian Heritage.

Interviews | July 16, 2015

An Interview with Patrick Madden by Ryan Kauffman

Ryan Kauffman is a creative nonfiction candidate in the MFA program at Northern Michigan University. His previous work has appeared in The Rumpus, Rathalla Review, and Heavy Feather Review. When he’s not reading and writing, he enjoys walking the shoreline of Lake Superior with his trusty canine sidekick, Dr. Watson.

Interviews | July 16, 2015

An Interview with Manuel Arturo Abreu by Caleb Hildenbrandt

I first encountered Manuel Arturo Abreu through the ‘alt lit’ community, in which their infrequent but penetrating public voice exploded into a flood of insights and theory when turned to dialogue. Their recent book, List of Consonants, is the impetus for this interview, but in keeping with the experimental nature of Manuel’s poetry, I’m going to forgo my usual attempt at summarizing the interviewee’s work, and instead use what Manuel calls “an inane lit crit / copywriting about millenials” description:

Abreu’s ‘alt lit,’ post-internet practice updates questions of space and time for the digital era—Where is the ‘original version’?

Interviews | April 15, 2015

An Interview With Kathleen Rooney by Cooper Renner

A Conversation With Kathleen Rooney: or, Weldon Kees, Robinson Alone, and What’s in the Pipeline

COOPER RENNER: Hello, Kathleen. I’m so pleased to be having a conversation with you. I must admit I was quite surprised by your book Robinson Alone, as Weldon Kees is not a name that often pops up in literary circles nowadays–or ever, arguably. I suppose I first became aware of him because of Donald Justice’s efforts to make sure Kees’s poetry got read. Could you tell us a little bit about how you came to Kees and about the beginnings of your Robinson poems?


Interviews | March 16, 2015

A Conversation About Lorine Niedecker: Angela Woodward and Cooper Renner

Lorine Niedecker (1903-1970) was an American poet of huge gift and little renown, who lived almost her entire life surrounded by water in rural Wisconsin. Wisconsin is famous for outsider art. You can travel the state visiting shrine-like installations made by unschooled sculptors or pull up at the beautifully preserved workmen’s hall the Painted Forest and view the transcendent murals that coat its interior. Niedecker, who survived on menial labor after completing two years of college, is in some sense another Wisconsin artist outside the mainstream. Her cultural milieu was mostly herself and her reading matter. Yet she forged a

Interviews | March 16, 2015

An Interview With Bibhas Roy Chowdhury by Kiriti Sengupta

On 17th of July, 2014 the Inner Child Press, limited [New Jersey] published and released the United States edition of Poem Continuous — Reincarnated Expressions, a collection of selected, translated poems by the noted Bengali poet Bibhas Roy Chowdhury. And on 25th of August the Fox Chase Review and Reading Series carried out a detailed review [of the said book] by Shernaz Wadia, a well-known poetry-reviewer from India. We were pleasantly surprised as the FCR team placed the book in the Ryerss Museum and Library, Philadelphia, followed by a formal invitation by G Emil Reutter, the editor, who expressed his

Interviews | December 15, 2014

An Interview With Christine Swanberg by Carol Smallwood

Christine Swanberg has published hundreds of poems journals such THE BELOIT POETRY JOURNAL, THE LOUISVILLE REVIEW, and SPOON RIVER QUARTERLY, and the June Cotner anthologies. Collections include TONIGHT ON THIS LATE ROAD (Erie St, 1984), INVISIBLE STRING (Erie St., 1989), SLOW MIRACLE (Lake Shore, 1990), BREAD UPON THE WATERS (Windfall Prophets, UW), THE TENDERNESS OF MEMORY (Plainview, 1995), THE RED LACQUER ROOM (Chiron, 2000), and WHO WALKS AMONG THE TREES WITH CHARITY (Wind, 2005), and THE ALLELUIA TREE (Puddin’head Press, 2012) A community poet interviewed by POET’S MARKET 2008, she has won many poetry awards and grants as well as recognition such as The Mayor’s Award for Community Impact, the YWCA Award for the Arts, and the Womanspirit Award. Gardening, horses, traveling, music, animals, nature, and various kinds of love are passions that inform her work. She is a retired English teacher who gives readings and workshops around the country.

Interviews | November 15, 2014

An Interview With Christine Redman-Waldeyer by Carol Smallwood

Christine Redman-Waldeyer is a poet and Assistant Professor in the Department of English at Passaic County Community College in New Jersey. She has published three poetry collections, “Frame by Frame”, “Gravel”, and “Eve Asks” (all with Muse-Pie Press) and has appeared in Schuylkill Valley Journal, The Texas Review, Verse Wisconsin, and others. Her latest credit includes Writing After Retirement: Tips from Successful Retired Writers (Rowman & Littlefield, 2014) which she co-edited. Redman-Waldeyer founded Adanna, a literary journal that focuses on women’s topics.

Please describe your website and your duties as editor/writer.

In 2008 my youngest son was born. I

Interviews | November 15, 2014

Poetry & Baking: A Conversation with Kathleen Rooney

Kathleen Rooney is a founding editor of Rose Metal Press and a founding member of Poems While You Wait, a team of poets and their typewriters who compose commissioned poetry on demand. She is the author of several books of poetry and nonfiction including, the essay collection For You, For You I Am Trilling These Songs (Counterpoint, 2010), a novel-in-poems Robinson Alone (Gold Wake Press, 2012), based on the life and work of Weldon Kees. Her most recent book is the novel O, Democracy! (Fifth Star Press, 2014).

I met Rooney as a grad student at DePaul University—where she

Interviews | September 15, 2014

An Interview With John Thomas Allen by Cooper Renner

Poet John Thomas Allen is the editor of the newly released anthology, Nouveau’s Midnight Sun: Transcriptions from Golgonooza and Beyond (Ravenna Press, 2014).

Interviews | August 15, 2014

An Interview With Adam Berlin by Sara Whitestone

Adam Berlin is the author of the novels The Number of Missing (Spuyten Duyvil), the boxing novel Both Members of the Club (Texas Review Press/winner of the Clay Reynolds Novella Prize), Belmondo Style (St. Martin’s Press/winner of The Publishing Triangle’s Ferro-Grumley Award) andHeadlock (Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill). His stories and poetry have appeared in numerous journals. He teaches writing at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City and co-edits J Journal: New Writing on Justice. For more, please visit

Interviews | July 15, 2014

An Interview with Noah Cicero by Caleb Hildenbrandt

Lazy Fascist Press has recently published the second and final volume of Noah Cicero’s Collected Works, so I took the opportunity to ask him some questions about it.

Caleb Hildenbrandt: Your work is intensely autobiographical, and The Collected Works Vol. II, particularly the main novella in it, The Insurgent, seems to be no exception–the protagonist lives in Youngstown, like you have, and even works as a dishwasher, like you have, and expounds on the deadening influence of American culture, like you have. But his name is Vasily and he’s a Russian immigrant who got shot in the leg climbing over