Q & A with Our Issue 2 Contributor John Proctor

1. If you were reviewing your own work, how would you describe its style or point of view? 

I would prefer not to. (That is actually my review.)

2. Who are some of your favorite contemporary authors?

In terms of nonfiction, I really enjoy Amy Leach, Matthew Goodman, Patrick Madden, Elena Passarello, John Jeremiah Sullivan, Ander Monson, John McPhee, and quite a few others who are no less important to me because my mind isn't recalling them right now.

3. If you were told you couldn't write anymore, what job would you pursue and why?

I would take to the task of pursuing my own death with greater vigor. Sorry if that sounds daft or pretentious but, as Zadie Smith paraphrased Seneca in her essay "Some Notes on Attunement," "Life feels longer the more you engage with it." I honestly can't imagine a life in which I just do things without meditating on them later, writing them down, reading about other people doing things, juxtaposing them with previous experiences, contextualizing them historically. That, to me, is my job, my calling, and my life.

4. When you think of Austin, what comes to mind?

Heat, music, SXSW, Jimmie Dale Gilmore. The usual stuff.

5. Answer the question you wish we had asked.

"Are you married?" Yes I am, actually, to a redheaded digital artist who is at least as talented at her craft as I am at mine. Sometimes I think my single-minded fixation on my work leads her to think I'm not also single-mindedly devoted to her, so I'm glad you asked this question. The life I've built with her and our two daughters is why I am so determined to document and make art out of our shared world. One of the great ironies of my life is that I now have less time to write than ever, and yet I write more now than I ever have. To egregiously oversimplify, this is probably because I now have so much more to write about.