Interview: Meredith Russo

Jeg er utrolig glad for endelig et kunne dele dette interview med jer. Ingen anden end den fantastiske amerikanske forfatter Meredith Russo, som netop er aktuel med bogen “Hvis jeg var din pige,” der for nyligt er blevet udgivet på dansk. Interviewet foregår på engelsk.

How would you describe yourself and your relationship with literature and writing?
My relationship with books started off as a way of escaping the real world, which I found intolerable for most of my life. When I was little I dealt with a lot of bullying, and then after puberty even though I wasn’t being bullied my body and social role made me so unhappy that I had to get away. Looking back, though, I think there was more to it. Stories provide us with ways of making sense of the world. They give us models of who we can be and how we can grow to become our best selves. That’s the purpose they serve in my life now.

Did you enjoy your stay in Denmark and would you like to come back sometime?
I loved Denmark, though I only saw Copenhagen while I was there. I didn’t even see that much of it, sadly, as Trump was elected while I was visiting and I spent a lot of my sightseeing time either checking in on friends back home or crying in my hotel room. And of course I would love to come back, though perhaps when it’s a little warmer.

Which thoughts were behind publishing your book and how did you manage to do it?
I wanted to write a book that young trans people could read and feel hopeful about their prospects for a happy life. I mainly accomplished this by focusing on how I wish my teen years had been, rather than how they actually were.

What themes do you primarily work with and how does this affect your literature?
As an outsider in my own culture, I think a lot about stories of outsiders and the prejudice they face. When I read Harry Potter I wanted to know what it was like to be a squib, or a werewolf, or a “mudblood”. When I read Tolkien I want to know what it’s like to be an orc, because surely they don’t want to be evil, surely this is their only option because if they just walked into Gondor and tried to be good they would be rejected. I think this affects the stories I write because even when they’re fantastical or full of science fiction, regular old prejudice and misunderstanding will always be one of the major difficulties my characters face.

What is your biggest obstacle when you are writing and how do you overcome it?
My short attention span! I’ve given up on trying to overcome it, and now I just work with it. I do a lot of writing on my phone because I have to write when the writing comes to me, I can’t just sit and make myself do it. So I’ll often sit in the middle of the floor and write on my phone when I’m halfway through mopping or doing dishes.

What is your best advice for future authors?
Write all the time! It doesn’t matter what you’re writing, whether it’s a journal or a blog or fanfiction, just write!

Can you tell us something about your future plans in writing?
I want to do more with genre fiction. I want to include a lot more “out there” concepts in my future stories, and I’m working on that a little bit at the moment.

2 Replies to “Interview: Meredith Russo”

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