“All of the jobs you used to have as a writer that you didn’t want but had anyway—something to put bread and beer on the table while you were writing your book—even those jobs are drying up.”
Black Cloud by Juliet Escoria is a book about drugs that is not a Drug Book. Although each first-person story cycles through a litany of mind-altering substances—coke, meth, weed, ketamine, cutting, and antidepressants, to name a few—the deeper stories take place in between lines, hits, and swigs.”
“More generally though, I want to keep writing about friendship as a central topic. The older I get, the clearer it becomes how vital and potent friendships are in all our lives, how connected with our health it is to have many people we love, to have myriad ways of being and interacting – even though as with all relationships, friendships can also sour, sometimes with extraordinarily damaging results.”
The Sunday Rumpus Interview: Robin Black, author of Life Drawing
“And as an artist, if my parents were still around, I don’t know that I would be this free. I don’t know that I would be who I am. I don’t know that I would be writing, and I certainly don’t know that I’d be writing about the stuff that I’m writing about. I’d like to think that my personality has always been sort of upbeat and outgoing, but if there were someone who was like, “Yo, don’t write about your vagina on the Internet,” I don’t know if I’d be like, “You know what, dude? I think I’m gonna do it anyway.” I can’t say for sure.”
“We wear our hats and ride the knives.
They cannot fix you. They try and try.
Tunnel! Into the dark open we go.
Days you are sick, we get dressed slow.”
— "Station" in House on Fire by Maria Hummel, reviewed by Laura Haynes
“We were then young girls and our want was written on our skins. Between our legs and along our necks and wrists, our skin craved friction and more friction. We kissed calluses into the backs of our hands, murmuring comfort at the enflamed flesh, but still, our skin would not be satisfied. In the dark, we rubbed pillows against stinging nipples and curled knee to chin, hoping to keep the skin from flying from our bodies. Stay with me, we said. In the mornings, we woke to puddles of wet sugar in our beds and wrung moisture from our underwear.”
“They slowed down Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony so it stretched over 24 hours. The effect was of a continual climbing, with no resolution – just an ever-building terror, the slowest imaginable scream. In a state of heightened time, everything reduces to fear, a sublime fear. If life has any meaning, it comes at the end.”