The Writer’s Block: A Q&A with Derek Palacio

by    /  June 5, 2017  / Comments Off on The Writer’s Block: A Q&A with Derek Palacio

Derek Palacio lives and teaches in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where he is a faculty member at the Institute of American Indian Arts MFA program and the co-director of the Mojave School, which offers a free creative writing summer camps to rural Nevada teens.

Palacio grew up in New Hampshire, a community far removed from the traditional Cuban enclaves of southern Florida and New York City. As a second-generation Cuban-American, Palacio explores the various shades of complexity that stem from being Cuban-American, and the ways in which these complexities manifest themselves in one’s family life and conception of self. He is the author of widely published short stories and novellas, and his debut novel, The Mortifications, was published by The Crown Publishing Group in 2016. The Mortifications is an exploration of a rural Cuban family’s separation when a revolutionary patriarch chooses to stay in Cuba and a mother leaves with her two children for New England.

In this Writer’s Block Q&A, Palacio discusses the process of turning a novella into a novel, his obsessions as a writer, and his feelings about Cuba’s future.

About the Author

Sampsonia Way is an online magazine sponsored by City of Asylum/Pittsburgh that seeks to protect and advocate for writers who may be endangered, to educate the public about threats to writers and literary expression, and to create a community in which endangered writers thrive and literary culture is a valued part of life.

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Fearless, Ink.