Colin Channer Recap!

Prairie Schooner Intern Weston Poor on Monday night’s event

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On Monday night, Carribean author Colin Channer read from his work as part of Prairie Schooner‘s Visiting Writer Series. The reading took place at the Center for Great Plains Studies in downtown Lincoln. Before his reading Channer remarked that he always looks forward to seeing the writing coming out of places he¹s never been before, such as Lincoln.

The first story, “How I Met My Husband,” from his short story collection Passing Through, is set on the fictional island of San Carlos. It is the story of a woman and how her travels led her to her first encounter with her husband. The extensive detail in the story created an incredibly vivid environment.

The second story, “Cristmust Fever,” is from the anthology Blue Christmas: Holiday Stories for the Rest of Us. Here Channer depicts the life of a young female refugee stricken with disease. In one of the final scenes of the story, the female narrator describes an unsavory scene featuring militia boys this way: “If the world were upside down, they would be a sky full of wickedness and hate shining in the spirit in the sky to see.” After the reading, Channer answered questions about the stories and fiction writing in general. When asked how he researched a story he replied, “I write the story first and fill in the facts later–I know the tricks of the mind.” He also discussed the art of writing in dialect. “Listen to how people speak,” he said, “and mimic them behind their backs.” He added that fiction writing is a lot of bluffing and people like you if you bluff well.