Checking in: With Jeremy Colangelo

PP: Hi Jeremy, it’s been a while. Thanks for taking the time to talk with me here.

 JC: It’s always lovely to hear from you, and yes I’d be very happy to do an interview. If I remember correctly, that In/Air chapbook was the first time I’d ever published a poem professionally. 

PP: That is cool. Thanks for starting a beautiful connection by pitching a poem.

You had been super-busy with presenting at a Joyce conference for a while and a book, Joyce Writing Disability, came out of that in which you had a paper. Congrats.

What have you read lately that lit you up? Why or how? 

JC: David Huebert’s story collection Chemical Valley is really good. David and I actually shared an office for a while when we were both graduate students at Western, so it’s great to see him coming out with such great work. On the non-fiction side, I recently stumbled on Ato Quayson’s Oxford St., Accra, which is a study of the history of one of the main streets in Accra, the capital city of Ghana, talking about everything from its emergence as a center of capital and global trade, to the slogans people paint on their cars.  

PP: Ooh, might have to check out the latter. What’s life’s focus these days, literary or otherwise? 

JC: I’m actually caught between two projects right now, and not for the first time. I’m writing another novel right now with the working title of Nostos. It’s a sort of metaphysical, science fiction, stream of consciousness . . . thing. Like most truly interesting books, it’s much better than it sounds.

PP: 🙂 I hear that.

JC: The other project is an academic book about literature and pain, called Agony for Others. I find having multiple things on the go at once helps keep me agile, and if nothing else it means that when I have trouble with one thing, I can cog it out while working on the other thing.  

PP: Nod, good way to run it. What have you got underway or forthcoming? 

JC: At the moment I have a story called “Consolation of the Cat Sitter” forthcoming in PRISM International and a poem called “i is another” forthcoming in Geist. I also came out with a story called “Hearth” in The New Quarterly earlier this year. Lastly, I have a story called “The Man who was God for a Minute” that I’ve been shopping around. Keep an eye out for it!  

PP: Will do. What else do you have out?  

JC: If anyone wants to read my fiction, the easiest way to do that is in my short story collection Beneath the Statue, which came out in 2020. It’s clearly the most important and significant thing to have happened that year, so you’ve probably already heard of it. It’s made up of stories I wrote over the span of about ten years and is, in my opinion, pretty darn alright.  

PP: Awesome. And on Kindle, it’s under $5. You can’t buy a coffee for that I understand. Any author site or social media urls you’d like to drop? 

JC: I don’t really use Twitter so much anymore since I find it a bit too soul-corroding for my taste, but my account there is @JRColangelo. I also keep my Goodreads page updated, so if you want to follow my work that place is as good as any.

PP: Super. Thanks for your time. Keep adding your voice to the world.