Evan Morgan Williams has been widely published in such magazines as Witness, Zyzzyva, The Kenyon Review, Antioch Review, and Alaska Quarterly Review. A collection of his stories, Thorn, won the 2013 Chandra Prize at BkMk Press (University of Missouri-Kansas City) and has just been released as a book (BkMk Press at the University of Missouri-Kansas City).
We’d like to know about your creative process.
My creative process begins in one of four ways: from an idea (“Oh, that would make a cool story”), from a laborious study of someone else’s story, from a mess of free writing, or, if I’m very lucky, directly from a character’s voice, in which case the story’s first draft unfolds easily. Then comes the revising, which is where the real writing happens. In recent years, my revising has tended to be more radical, often rewriting a story from scratch, several times if necessary, until the story tells its truth. I attribute this labor to my aging brain; I can’t hold the entire story in my mind as easily, all my intentions, so I work at this sub rosa level over and over again until the words feel right. Thanks for asking!
What are you currently reading?
Swamplandia! by Karen Russell
What are some all-time favorite books and authors?
All-time faves: One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the short stories of Ernest Hemingway, Borges, Poe, Cheever, the stories of Barry Lopez.