Each week, the editors of Jenny Magazine sit down with either fellow literary magazine editors or past Jenny contributors for short interviews. This week’s interview is with Susan Pepper Robbins, a past contributor of Jenny Magazine.
Describe your first publication. Where was it, when, and what was the piece about? How old were you at the time and how did it feel?
My first publication was in a small, very small, xeroxed publication.
What inspired your piece in the Jenny?
What inspired my “Just Like Debbie Reynolds” story was being the observer, the listener to the breakup stories of close friends.
What got you into writing?
What got me into writing was reading and wanting to tell stories.
What do you like writing the most? Is there a certain style you prefer?
I love domestic realism — “She washed the dishes and planned her escape.”
What are your influences? Who are your favorite writers?
I am influenced by the writing of Jane Austen to Tessa Hadley, Rachel Cusk, Elena Ferrante and other “auto-fiction” writers.
What’s your proudest moment as an author?
I am proud that my novel won the Virginia Prize for Fiction and then was published by Random House as One Way Home.
How has your writing developed over time?
I try to learn more and more from other writers, more than ever, more than when I began writing.
Are you currently working on anything?
Now I am writing a novel in flash fictions.
What’s your writing process?
My process is to try to write a sentence every day, because I am a full time teacher and do not have much time.
What are you currently reading?
I am reading Patrick Modiano, Elena Ferrante, Graham Swift, Margaret Drabble, William Trevor.
Have you ever co-written something with another author? If so, what was that experience like?
Yes, I wrote with two friends a murder mystery for YA. It has never been published…yet.
Are you a past Jenny contributor or an editor at a literary magazine and interested in an interview? Send us an email.