eight questions with rebecca schumejda
rebecca schumejda is one of those wonderful poets we bump into in the semi-darkness of the small press and, in doing so, smack ourselves in the head and think, “how great could nibble have been had we only known of her sooner?!?!”
and now, eight questions with rebecca schumejda:
What is your role in the small press?
Now I just write, but I have been involved with the small press in varying degrees for over fifteen years. During my junior year of high school, I was expelled and sent to an alternative high school program for derelicts, pregnant teens and other oddballs. While I was there, I learned many valuable lessons. My English teacher, Mrs. Clancy, introduced me to the small press and inspired me to start my own zine reuben’s kincaid, which I continued until I finished graduate school. I love the fact that many of the writers that I had the honor of publishing are still out there writing and supporting the cause. Another important lesson that I learned was how to make a smoking apparatus out of a carrot, but I didn’t learn that from Mrs. Clancy. Oh, and by the way, now I am an alternative education high school teacher and I work with the most authentic students in the world! I expose my students to a diversity of authors, including those who publish in the small press.
What is one thing people should know about you?
I don’t like drama. I am a straight shooter.
What are you working on right now that has you excited?
I just finished the rough draft of a new collection of poems about the pool hall subculture inspired by my short-lived experience as a co-owner of a pool hall. Conversely, I am working on poems about motherhood.
Name one thing you wish you had.
One day with my father. He passed away (oddly enough June 21st) four years ago. I wish he could hold my daughter; she is just shy of two. I wish I could touch his hands and tell him how much I appreciate everything he did for me.
Name one thing you have that you could do without.
Housework; It is the biggest waste of time and energy.
Who is your favorite small press poet?
Since I have never been good at following directions… Nathan Graziano, Daniel Crocker (People Everyday is my all time favorite collection of poems), Heather Bell, Patrick Carrington, William Taylor Jr., Kathleen Paul-Flanagan, Alan Catlin… I am obviously biased, but I love all the sunnyoutside press writers. I could go on forever, honestly.
Name one small press poetry mag, other than nibble, that everyone should read?
Where do you want to see your own poetry?
I am pretty excited about all of the amazing publications that have found a home for my work, but the one nut I have been trying to crack is Rattle…
rebecca’s poetry will appear in issue eight of nibble and in the mysterious issue nine of nibble…
check back next friday for a new eight and click on our ‘eight’ page to see past interviews!