Aaron M. Fortkamp has a master’s in fiction writing from Miami University. He had the pleasure of spending a year at George Mason, and this year will return to San Marcos to finish his MFA at Texas State, where he will resume studies under the watchful eyes of Debra Monroe, Tom Grimes, and any other brilliant mind he can persuade to pay him attention. This is his first publication.

In answer to our question of why he writes, Aaron responded:

“I write because I can’t stop writing. If you enter into conversation with me, all the words I’ll say will have already appeared once in my mind with quotation marks around them, and the words you say will settle into my brain likewise bracketed, to separate them from the expository bits of commentary that don’t make my verbal cut. Really the only thing missing from the resulting transcript is dialogue tags. Plus I’m always trying to identify causality, I’m always plotting, always looking for the plot. A million reasons not to write, but most just delay the words from getting to the page, and right now only one reason comes to mind with validity, one thing that I’d rather do: sleep. Some nights, though, the sheer want for oblivion is not enough to stop my mind. A far better strategy than trying to twist that spigot is to get behind a keyboard and let the writing out, so there’s not as much interior pressure once my head’s on the pillow. Which I guess means the desire to sleep is another reason to write. Or to actually write. I think I’m failing at this prompt. A string of italics in your wake is a good indicator of failure.

Taking my stories from inside to out, putting them down, regarding them with physical eyes, just allows me to organize them effectively and dress them up in pretty clothes. Even if I don’t, the stories will still come, so preparing them a bit for the world seems the least I can do.”







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