On the last night of When Words Collide, Joshua Pantalleresco graciously offered to interview me about my writing and academic careers. We sat in the lobby of the hotel and had a great chat, which evolved into a discussion of bullying and scapegoating in the writing community via my negative experience at Clarion some years ago. Afterward, we considered cutting that part of the interview, even though I don't provide details about my experience, and it isn't my intention to call the offending parties out for their misconduct. But in light of the recent revelation that Sandra Kasturi and Brett Savoy of Chiaroscuro Press have been abusing the good will of writers for years, I thought it was important to elevate the overall conversation about these issues of bullying, scapegoating, and the exploitation of unequal power in the writing community. Specifically, I care that listeners understand there are often long-term impacts of these behaviours upon the creative lives of writers. My hope is that writers who have been on the receiving end of these abuses know they can recover their creativity and their professional drive, as I have. I also hope that together we all continue to create a culture of kindness in the writing community.
Here then, is the entire interview. My heartfelt thanks to Josh for his professionalism and friendship in the creation of it.