INTERVIEWS: The Next Big Thing with Kristin Hatch

hatch cover

The Next Big Thing Interview

Kristin Hatch’s chapbook, Through the Hour Glass is currently available from CutBank Books. She was tagged in the “The Next Big Thing” self-interview series. Her responses are below.

Q. What is your working title of your book?

A. Through the Hour Glass

Where did the idea come from for the book?

The title takes its name from, “Like sands through the hour glass, so are the Days of Our Lives,” the opening of the daytime soap opera and Lewis Carroll. The poems in the chapbook are all titled for characters and plotlines that happened on the show while I was growing up in the 90s. The project tries to link the rabbit hole of being a kid with being brainwashed to believe you are a princess. Or special date nights with candlelit musical montages. And maybe something about lowbrow art (“lowbrow art” all proper or not) and poems and maybe wanting stuff a little more goofball, a little more joyful.

What genre does your book fall under?


Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

The shock of the new actor seems particularly prevalent in soaps. Suddenly it’s a Tuesday and there’s a new Lorenzo and you have to get used to new-Lorenzo’s new face, but you feel really betrayed until you’re like, “what am I doing holding this pig-baby, I have to go play croquet with the queen!” For some reason I found that scene in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland to be extremely terrifying as a child. Looking back, I guess it’s kind of Mulholland Drive-y. Which I also found extremely terrifying. Point: give me Deidre Hall or give me death.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

It’s a chapbook kind of about the soap opera, Days of Our Lives.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

CutBank Books published this chapbook. It turned out very beautiful and they are very nice. They should make everybody’s chapbooks.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

The first poems happened in grad school some years ago. I forgot about them. Then I found them again and binged on You Tube videos and Wikipedia entries. My stories! Soap opera Wikipedia pages are a labyrinthine and impressive, a marvel. Maybe six months-ish? It seemed real fast versus the full-length book. I guess because it was: months versus years. But it was nice to work on something small and focused while the rejection letters poured in for the full-length manuscript. But rejection letters no longer! My the meatgirl whatever won the National Poetry Series and will be coming out on Fence in the winter. Thank you, Universe (and K. Silem Mohammad)!

What other books would you compare this collection to within your genre?

All the great ones and none of the bad ones.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

Backlighting, the devil, feminism, my friend Doug.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

There is a guillotine scene. And the cover drawing by Amy Sollins (and laid out by Clint Garner) is really, really pretty. So even if you hate (or “eh”) the poems, you get to experience this extraordinary drawing.

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Kristin was tagged by Kiki Petrosino ( author of the forthcoming Hymn for the Black Terrific. As per the rules, Kristin is tagging:

Mary Margaret Alvarado:

Greg Lawless: