Stuck writing workshop prompts for the last couple years, Jenny Maloney is relieved to finally write whatever she wants. Hurray for freedom! Currently she’s working on a novel and has several more lined up to write (so many ideas, so few hours in the day…). She lives in Colorado with her husband, son, and hyperactive dog.
Her story Maybe Blue appears in the Spring 2008 issue of Shimmer.
QUESTIONS ABOUT THE STORY:
Where did the idea come from?
Actually the idea came from a prompt in a writer’s group that I participate in. The prompt was to write the greatest rejection letter you’ll ever receive. I wrote that a literary story about clowns being held prisoner underwater was rejected on the grounds that it was too good….The group dared me to write a real story like that and this is what I came up with. I’m scared of clowns, so mimes seemed the best way to keep me coming back to the page.
You know the advice “Sometimes you have to kill your darlings.” Was there a scene or line that it really hurt to cut, but cutting it made the story stronger?
Unfortunately, I can’t bear to keep looking at my darlings once I’ve sent them to the ether….
How is this story like your other work? How is it different?
This is a benchmark story for me. It stretched me for both subject matter and length. And I loved it.
Questions About Writing:
What writing projects are you presently working on?
Currently I’m working on my second novel (the first one is happily stowed in its drawer). I’m also developing a poetry collection and always I’m working on short stories.
Do you have a specific food or drink that you consider a writing staple?
Hot chocolate, cold chocolate. Chocolate in general.
Do you work with a critique or writers group?
I work with a wonderful group of writers on an informal basis and I also am part of a terrific critique group called the Colorado Springs Fiction Writer’s Group.
It’s been said that readers can be divided into two groups: those who like The Iliad and those who like The Odyssey. Which camp are you in?
Oh my. This is like asking me what my favorite movie is.
What is your darkest secret?
I’m scared of telling secrets in the dark.
Have you ever eaten a crayon? Tell us about it.
No, but my dog has. I don’t think I should tell you about it.
Fast food: Yea or Nay?
Yea. And Yea again.
All-time favorite movie?
This is like asking me whether I like The Iliad or The Odyssey better.
What are some of your hobbies?
White water rafting, skydiving, bull riding, rocket building, ballet dancing, and playing guitar on the street for money. Mostly I just sit around and make stuff up.
Quiz: How many writers does it take to change a lightbulb? Please explain your answer:
One. And then a whole bunch of great friends and editors to tell him how to do it better.