Editor’s Note: This exchange is part of a series of brief interviews with emerging writers of recent or forthcoming books. If you enjoyed it, please visit other interviews in the I’ve Got Questions feature.
- What’s the title of your book? Fiction? Nonfiction? Poetry? Who is the publisher and what’s the publication date?
A Constellation of Ghosts: A Speculative Memoir with Ravens. It’s a speculative memoir. Regal House Publishing, October 19, 2021.
- In a couple of sentences, what’s the book about?
Tag line: I was busy doing other things when cancer came, and my father, thirty years dead, returned to me as a raven.
- What’s the book’s genre (for fiction and nonfiction) or primary style (for poetry)?
- What’s the nicest thing anyone has said about the book so far?
“Laraine Herring has written a groundbreaking, breathtaking tour de force here, excavating personal and ancestral trauma as she blazes forth new possibilities for both narrative and healing. A Constellation of Ghosts is reckoning and revelation, deeply embodied, wholly visionary. This book is unlike anything you’ve ever read; this book will rock you to the marrow and leave you changed.” ~Gayle Brandeis, author of The Art of Misdiagnosis
- What book or books is yours comparable to or a cross between? [Is your book like Moby Dick or maybe it’s more like Frankenstein meets Peter Pan?]
Work by Janice Lee, Maggie Nelson, Chelsey Clammer, and Lidia Yuknavitch.
- Why this book? Why now?
This is my ninth book. I’m sorry, but I don’t know exactly how to answer this question. The books come to me that come, and they always come at the right time when I’m ready to handle what they’re offering to me. Every book offers a healing, and they arrive when I’m ready to do that work.
- Other than writing this book, what’s the best job you’ve ever had?
Working as a projectionist in a movie theater when I was in college. I loved watching the films over and over again in the dark like a bat.
- What do you want readers to take away from the book?
I want them to meet their own grief and sadness and form a new relationship with it. I’d love it if they could make space to forgive an ancestor or two as well.
- What food and/or music do you associate with the book?
Dark, cello music.
- What book(s) are you reading currently?
Seek You: A Journey through American Loneliness by Kristen Radtke, Imagine a Life by Janice Lee, and The Inner Work of Age: Shifting From Role to Soul by Connie Zweig.
Learn more about Laraine Herring at her website.