Non-Fiction by Non-Men: Alanna Okun
Interview for Fiction Advocate, February 2019
As a guest interviewer for E.B. Bartels’ Non-Fiction by Non-Men series, I spoke with Alanna Okun, a writer, editor, and crafter living in New York. She is currently a deputy editor at Vox, and she has previously worked at Racked and Buzzfeed. Okun’s first book, The Curse of the Boyfriend Sweater, was published by Flatiron Books in March 2018.
How Sophie Kinsella’s Romance Novels Helped Me become a Reader… Again
Essay published by Bustle, September 2018.
I was a reader before I was a student. But after years of making a study out of stories, these identities were interwoven and central to how I saw myself and how I hoped other saw me. Uncertain of who else I would be or how I could reclaim these parts of me now that I was a Ph.D. drop out, I just stopped reading.
MISUNDERSTANDING HENRY JAMES AND HIGH SCHOOL BULLIES
Essay in Electric Literature, August 2018.
I can’t remember now whether that was because my favorite English teacher lent me a copy, or the single-room library in town happened to hold a slim edition on their limited shelf-space. I do remember that my reaction was immediate. I was enamored, and I was settled: this would be my reinvention.
A great rushing of wings
Short Fiction in Entropy, March 2018.
The funeral was on a Thursday morning. The memorial service on campus was scheduled right away for that Friday, but I told my mom I’d stay for the weekend, maybe longer. A few weeks, a month if she needed help in the house.
Hannah Webster Foster
Literary History Profile in Boston Book Blog, March 2018.
On July 29th, 1788, the Salem Mercury published a story about Elizabeth Whitman, an educated, single woman from Connecticut who died alone and away from home at the Bell Tavern in then-Danvers, Massachusetts, after giving birth to a stillborn baby. The story was quickly picked up by papers in Boston and throughout New England.
Close Range Marketing
Short Fiction in Rag-Queen Periodical, February 2018.
You hear a commotion in the kitchen from your desk, so you look up and away from your inbox, ear reaching towards the noise. You hear what sounds like a jackhammer, the intense whirring and the resulting vibration. It reminds you of the filling...
Bear Sighting in the Big Woods
Personal Essay in Montana Mouthful, Feb. 2018.
My parents hated Ma and Pa, and I never did make molasses candy, but I continued to read and reread the series throughout my childhood...
Dorothy Macardle & The Irish Mother
Blog Post for IGA Postgrad, December 2015.
With this enchanted painting plot, the short story reads as a thinly veiled allegory: Macardle is warning the reader of the dangers of using woman as national symbol. And, perhaps more interesting, she’s doing so by using gothic elements to cast feminine characters as a mother-daughter pair.