Each week we will be connecting with our contributors showing where they have been, where they are now, and what’s up for the future.
Name: Peter Grandbois
Title of Piece Published in Sweet: “To Sing and Begin Again”
Peter teaches creative writing and coaches fencing at Denison University, a small liberal arts college near Columbus, Ohio. The town of Granville is great. He never has to worry about parking, which is a big relief after living in Chicago and the Bay Area. You can learn more about Peter by visiting his website.
What are some major accomplishments you have had since your Sweet publication?
I had a novel come out in April. It’s called half-burnt and deals with the murder of one of the most famous Ojibwe chiefs, Hole in the Day. It’s a weird book in that it’s historical but also experimental in that it’s made up of four different narrative frames that slowly conflate as the book progresses. I also have a new book of poetry called The Three-Legged World coming out in April 2020 from Etruscan Press. It’s being published together with books by James McCorkle and Robert Miltner and called, Tripytch. I’m thrilled to be in the company of such wonderful poets.
Can you tell us about a current/ongoing project that you’re excited about?
I have two current projects. The first is a book of poetry. Not sure what the unifying themes in that book are yet, but I’ve written a lot of poems! The second is a book of flash fictions/prose poems currently titled, Domestic Bestiary. Each piece is either told from the point of view of an animal or insect in our domestic realm or features one as a central part of the story. I think of that book as a sort of companion or sister book to my earlier collection, Domestic Disturbances.
Who is your favorite author?
An impossible question…. so many writers I deeply deeply love. I can only list a few that happen to come to mind at the moment for both fiction and poetry. On the fiction side currently there’s Laszlo Krasznahorkai, Yoko Ogawa, and Javier Marías…. but old and constant favorites include José Saramago, Steven Millhauser, Ana Maria Shua, the list goes on….. In terms of poetry, some current favorites are Joanna Klink, Charles Wright, Laura Kasischke, and Kevin Prufer….. but old favorites include Mark Strand, W.S. Merwin, and Brigit Pegeen Kelly.
What is your favorite poem/essay/book?
Again, too tough to answer as there are so many…I can only say what poem, essay, book happens to pop into my head.
Poem: Mark Strand’s “Keeping Things Whole”
Essay: Margot Singer’s “Call it Rape”
Book: Leena Krohn’s Tainaron: Mail From Another City
What inspires you to write?
I think, like most writers, I write to stay sane. It’s my response to the world, to life. I write because I enjoy playing with words. I enjoy discovering different aspects of myself. I write because I’m curious about the world, about what it means to be human. I write because I want to share that deep part of myself and my experience in the only way I know how.
What is your favorite sweet?
I love dark chocolate turtles with pecans and caramel! I also love toffee, and carrot cake and cheese cake!
Thank you, Peter, for taking the time to reconnect with us. We look forward to seeing more of your work in the future!