Our Fall 2014 issue will be coming out soon filled to the brim with intriguing and entertaining pieces. One of the published writers is our very own Luke Konkol and he was lucky enough to have two pieces accepted! I’m fortunate enough to have a couple classes with the guy and wanted you to learn more about him.
Q: Tell me a little about yourself.
Luke: I have a degree in philosophy, from UW – La Crosse. I came back to get a degree in English education and maybe social studies education, but I got a job in academic technology so I’m starting there with higher education on the horizon. Writing is my hobby. My major here is English and my minor is humanistic studies, and I would love to teach, eventually.
Q: What age group would you teach?
Luke: Either college humanistic studies or philosophy, or high school social studies or English; or all of the above.
Q: You have two pieces being published this semester in Sheepshead Review: “The Spirited Wreck,” a nonfiction piece, and “Fittings,” a poetry piece. Could you delve deeper into what these two pieces are about and what inspired you to write them?
Luke: “The Spirited Wreck” is about my great-grandfather, who was arrested for moonshining in 1928, and I was inspired when I was looking through old newspapers from the 1920’s and stumbled across the record of him being arrested. So the story references different ads and things that were in the newspaper that day. “Fittings,” the title, is a pun on plumbing and the poem is about plumbing and how it connects people throughout centuries and different social ranks; how everybody has the call of nature and how plumbing connects everybody with that.
Q: Which piece was more difficult for you to write?
Luke: “The Spirited Wreck” because it’s balancing the difference between fact and gossip, and how that reflects the truth or how that is/isn’t the truth. So writing a nonfiction piece which was based on the fact that fiction occurs naturally when you have an event was a challenge.
Q: What was your process when writing “Fittings?”
Luke: Well typically when I write poetry, I either start with an idea, write and then make it fit with a particular rhythm, meter, pattern or rhyme scheme. “Fittings” was a bit of both; I started with meters and rhyme schemes that I wanted at certain parts. Then I started on the other side and came to the middle, if that makes sense.
Q: What was your favorite out of the pair to write?
Luke: They’re both very different.
Q: If you had to pick?
Luke: “The Spirited Wreck” was my favorite to write because it required more research and it felt more clever.
Q: Have you submitted to other journals or magazines?
Luke: No, I haven’t submitted to journals, but I have in (one of the other areas I’m interested in) drama. I’ve written a couple of murder-mystery shows that have been put on by high schools and local reenactment groups. They’re not really published but they’re out there and they’ve been done, so that’s kind of cool.
Q: You’re on the Nonfiction Staff, is there a reason why you chose to be on that staff? Do you like nonfiction more?
Luke: No, I don’t like nonfiction more than other genres, but I have more experience in nonfiction; writing and reading philosophy constantly…it’s more adjacent to nonfiction.
Q: You’re also the Web Editor. Is there a reason why you chose that position?
Luke: I know what I’m doing [laughs].
Q: Okay, so what is difficult about being the Web Editor?
Luke: Right now it’s the fact that it’s structured as a blog, so not having the design control we might want. Plus with the web site, I don’t have material to build off of just yet. I just got the color scheme and things for the new edition, so we can start moving things in that direction.
Q: Any advice?
Luke: If the word for what you want to say doesn’t exist, gencogitaterate one; portmanteaux are your friends.