Posts tagged Michele Christle

So I recently learned the place that was originally going to publish this interview/conversation between Rachel B. Glaser, Michele Christle, and myself is now defunct, and rather than let all the transcription work go to waste, I thought I’d post it here. It’s long. It’s in five parts. Like this:

Pronunciation and Sentences

Computers and Radios

Imitations, Pen Pals, and Birth Order

Text Messages

Publishing and the End of the World

Two Sisters & One Friend in a Conversation about Writing (Part Five)

One day in August of 2012, Heather Christle and Michele Christle sat down with their friend Rachel B. Glaser to talk about language, writing, reading, growing up, and cell phones. Heather and Michele are sisters, and met Rachel in Northampton, Massachusetts, where all three lived at the time. Northampton is a town full of poets and writers, many of whom—like these three—attended the MFA Program for Poets & Writers at UMass Amherst. Michele’s nickname is “Chelly,” which is what Rachel and Heather call her in the conversation. 

A few other names are mentioned in the course of the conversation:

Chris is Christopher DeWeese, a poet, and Heather’s husband.

Landman is Seth Landman, a poet.

Emily Hunt is also a poet.

Mike Young is a writer of many stripes.

This is the fifth of five parts.

PART FIVE (PUBLISHING AND THE END OF THE WORLD)

RACHEL: What are you guys up to now? Chelly, you’re working on a novel. What’s it about?

MICHELE: It’s a documentation of 35 days spent at sea, being the lone woman in a crew of 22 men on a 906 foot container ship with our father (who art not in heaven, but the ocean.) And that’s probably a line from one of your poems, Heather. Don’t you say something like that?

HEATHER: No.

MICHELE: Oh, that’s just me.

HEATHER: Do you get that feeling sometimes? Kleptamnesia.

MICHELE: Yeah, okay, that happens a lot.

HEATHER: Are you often afraid that it’s from me?

MICHELE: Oh yeah.

RACHEL: What’s kleptamnesia?

HEATHER: Actually what you’re having is not kleptamnesia; it’s the reverse. Kleptamnesia is when you think that you’ve made something up, but in fact you’ve borrowed it from somebody else.

Two Sisters & One Friend in a Conversation about Writing (Part Four)

One day in August of 2012, Heather Christle and Michele Christle sat down with their friend Rachel B. Glaser to talk about language, writing, reading, growing up, and cell phones. Heather and Michele are sisters, and met Rachel in Northampton, Massachusetts, where all three lived at the time. Northampton is a town full of poets and writers, many of whom—like these three—attended the MFA Program for Poets & Writers at UMass Amherst. Michele’s nickname is “Chelly,” which is what Rachel and Heather call her in the conversation. 

A few other names are mentioned in the course of the conversation:

Chris is Christopher DeWeese, a poet, and Heather’s husband.

Landman is Seth Landman, a poet.

Emily Hunt is also a poet.

Mike Young is a writer of many stripes.

This is the fourth of five parts.

PART FOUR (TEXT MESSAGES)

HEATHER: Can I tell you guys something that I just started looking at? There’s this site called Literally Unbelievable, which has screenshots of people on Facebook linking to stories on The Onion, thinking that they’re real, and being outraged by them.

RACHEL: That’s so funny.

HEATHER: But reading poetry and stories and novels—or just reading—teaches you that not everything you read is information being transmitted directly from one place to another. There are those layers of meaning and irony and play.

MICHELE: Part of the reason why we use language to speak around something is because it gets boring to just say, “What are you doing? How are you? Where are you going? How do you feel?” So you develop all these new ways of saying it so it keeps the conversation fresh even if you’re just saying the same shit.

RACHEL: Texting can be playful. It’s like passing notes or something.

HEATHER: Who’s your best texting person?

Two Sisters & One Friend in a Conversation about Writing (Part Three)

One day in August of 2012, Heather Christle and Michele Christle sat down with their friend Rachel B. Glaser to talk about language, writing, reading, growing up, and cell phones. Heather and Michele are sisters, and met Rachel in Northampton, Massachusetts, where all three lived at the time. Northampton is a town full of poets and writers, many of whom—like these three—attended the MFA Program for Poets & Writers at UMass Amherst. Michele’s nickname is “Chelly,” which is what Rachel and Heather call her in the conversation. 

A few other names are mentioned in the course of the conversation:

Chris is Christopher DeWeese, a poet, and Heather’s husband.

Landman is Seth Landman, a poet.

Emily Hunt is also a poet.

Mike Young is a writer of many stripes.

This is the third of five parts.

PART THREE (IMITATIONS, PEN PALS, AND BIRTH ORDER)

MICHELE: Want to talk about imitation?

HEATHER: Sure.

MICHELE: I was thinking about content, and how form can follow content. I’ve always liked to do imitations. I was thinking about how there’s some element of satisfaction that comes from being able to imitate someone successfully. I remember we used to imitate Cook from The Little Princess, and we were always each other’s audience. I think that—in my writing—that’s why dialogue is such a big part of it, because I like listening for what to imitate. Do you feel like that’s true for you too, Heather?

HEATHER: Not so much in terms of dialogue…

MICHELE: Character?

HEATHER: Yeah, there’s the pleasure that someone might get from recognizing the patterns and rhythms of speech that somebody else has said. Or rhythm of thought. Or a rhythm of ego, even—how people want certain things to be believed about themselves.

RACHEL: When you guys were talking about being each other’s audiences in your childhood it made me think of writers who are only children. Maybe in some ways they feel more alone in their writing. But for you guys, it seems like you both were writing at a pretty early age, performing for each other.

Two Sisters & One Friend in a Conversation about Writing (Part Two)

One day in August of 2012, Heather Christle and Michele Christle sat down with their friend Rachel B. Glaser to talk about language, writing, reading, growing up, and cell phones. Heather and Michele are sisters, and met Rachel in Northampton, Massachusetts, where all three lived at the time. Northampton is a town full of poets and writers, many of whom—like these three—attended the MFA Program for Poets & Writers at UMass Amherst. Michele’s nickname is “Chelly,” which is what Rachel and Heather call her in the conversation. 

A few other names are mentioned in the course of the conversation:

Chris is Christopher DeWeese, a poet, and Heather’s husband.

Landman is Seth Landman, a poet.

Emily Hunt is also a poet.

Mike Young is a writer of many stripes.

This is the second of five parts.

PART TWO (COMPUTERS AND RADIOS)

RACHEL: Do you guys write on the computer?

MICHELE: It depends, I mean, if I’m doing “generative” writing, then sometimes I like to write by hand, but with longer things I’m on the computer.

RACHEL: Did you have a computer when you were on the ship?

MICHELE: Yeah, I did. And that was amazing, because I actually had a desk that I would sit at.  I sat at that desk a lot, and I wrote a lot. When I was in Africa for two years I didn’t have a computer or electricity, and I sat at a desk and wrote everything by hand.

RACHEL: Your life in Africa that I was reading about is so exciting, and you seem so happy, that I was almost thinking it’s amazing that you’re here and not still back there. All these off-hand things about “my neighbor saying my chicken is mad because I don’t have a rooster,” just seem really interesting. There’s this scene in “Lagon Bleu” where you’re riding in this truck through a village that doesn’t normally see trucks, and everyone is waving at you, and the kids have memorized the way your phone sounds when it makes a text message. It just sounds like a good situation.

Two Sisters & One Friend in a Conversation about Writing (Part One)

One day in August of 2012, Heather Christle and Michele Christle sat down with their friend Rachel B. Glaser to talk about language, writing, reading, growing up, and cell phones. Heather and Michele are sisters, and met Rachel in Northampton, Massachusetts, where all three lived at the time. Northampton is a town full of poets and writers, many of whom—like these three—attended the MFA Program for Poets & Writers at UMass Amherst. Michele’s nickname is “Chelly,” which is what Rachel and Heather call her in the conversation. 

A few other names are mentioned in the course of the conversation:

Chris is Christopher DeWeese, a poet, and Heather’s husband.

Landman is Seth Landman, a poet.

Emily Hunt is also a poet.

Mike Young is a writer of many stripes.

This is the first of five parts.

PART 1 (PRONUNCIATION AND SENTENCES)

HEATHER: What should tell people reading this so they understand what we’re doing right now?

MICHELE: We’re about to eat cookies from the table.

HEATHER: How would you describe where we are?

MICHELE: We’re in, well you said we can’t say Art Deco…you describe it.

HEATHER: It’s a small Modernist porch.

MICHELE: And it’s a little hot on this side.

HEATHER: Who should we say we are?

MICHELE: Ourselves.

HEATHER: Who are you?

Sometimes one’s sister receives a book for Christmas and one realizes life is about to reveal "many meanings captured in a small space." Then one begins very much to look forward to 2014.

Sometimes one’s sister receives a book for Christmas and one realizes life is about to reveal "many meanings captured in a small space." Then one begins very much to look forward to 2014.

My sister has a copy of the 1964 edition of this book. Before she owned it, it belonged to our mother. Before our mother owned it, it belonged to Donovan. He was her neighbor.
My sister writes here. She writes about our mother and Donovan and all sorts here.

My sister has a copy of the 1964 edition of this book. Before she owned it, it belonged to our mother. Before our mother owned it, it belonged to Donovan. He was her neighbor.

My sister writes here. She writes about our mother and Donovan and all sorts here.

These woods are behind many empty structures. Emptied of humans, or legal ones. There is an abandoned house next to ours, with a sprawling yard of chicken coops and open gates for long gone animals. Next to it, the infamous Oronoka restaurant, once lauded for its signature steaks, free birthday cakes, glass boots full of beer, remembered for the three hours it took to eat a meal there. The restaurant closed in 2003 but locals say the tables inside are still set.
Michele Christle writes about her new life in Orono, Maine.

Remember the Michele Christle I told you about? She ran a marathon the other day. Now she’s answering questions over at the Kenyon Review blog. What next?

I’m in the midst of transcribing a conversation between myself and two writers I adore: Rachel B. Glaser and my sister—Michele Christle. It so happens that the latter has a story in the new issue of the Kenyon Review, and it so happens that I think it’s great. We talk about it in the interview, which I’ll link to when it goes up, but in the meantime, maybe you want to get your hands on a copy?
(Photo by the extraordinary Emily Hunt.)

I’m in the midst of transcribing a conversation between myself and two writers I adore: Rachel B. Glaser and my sister—Michele Christle. It so happens that the latter has a story in the new issue of the Kenyon Review, and it so happens that I think it’s great. We talk about it in the interview, which I’ll link to when it goes up, but in the meantime, maybe you want to get your hands on a copy?

(Photo by the extraordinary Emily Hunt.)

News for today: Michele Christle is now tweeting.

News for today: Michele Christle is now tweeting.