Turnstyle on Wednesday, May. 2nd
Fusebox is an annual contemporary art and performance festival that takes place in Austin, TX every year, right about now. The festival consists of 50+ events over 12 days in 15 different venues. It’s a dynamic mix of artists from across the globe including The Netherlands, the UK, Argentina, and Columbia. Fusebox champions adventurous forms of art across a variety of media. This year, Fusebox’s Elizabeth Doss and Annie La Ganga are curating The Writer’s Room: A Home Studio Tour . Part investigation into the writer’s singular relationship with space, part strangely invigorating playdate, the tour is a chance to visit the writing life and the physical places where creativity thrives.
While the tour takes place this weekend (May 5th & 6th), over the course of the next week, TURNSTYLE in collaboration with independent producer Deepa Donde will bring you a series of podcasts featuring Austin based writers sharing small stories about their writing spaces. Jill Meyers is the editor of American Short Fiction, and sat in on the recording session for the podcasts. While there, Donde talked with her about the role that writer’s rooms play in their lives.
DEEPA DONDE: What’s changed for the writer’s sacred space and what’s largely stayed the same?
JILL MEYERS: I think one thing that each of these writers brings to their spaces is a sense (that) each of them is looking for a refuge in a way. A place where they can be intimate with themselves and where they can explore their writing in a deeper way than they can explore in other spaces. In terms of technology, it seems that a lot of these writers are technology agnostic or that they are looking to explore writing with pen and paper, or on their phones or on tablets. Many of them bring different approaches to writing, but they bring incredible focus and intentionality to that process.
One thing that they all share is a sense of celebration in this creative process.
DONDE: Is there an underlying tension for writers these days between embracing technology and repudiating it?
MEYERS: I do think that a lot of writers cast off technology in order to find deeper focus. I know that Jonathan Franzen and Dave Eggers keep themselves separated from the internet in their writing spaces. They are looking just to be able to focus their attention on their work and to stave off distraction. I think that is something that a lot of writers have to engage with: how do we let the right amount of information in. How do we access the world and engage with the world, but also carve out that private, dedicated time for us to produce the work.
DONDE: You’ve gotten to sit in on the recording sessions. What’s been exciting about hearing the writers talk about their spaces?
MEYERS: On thing that’s been incredibly exciting is to hear these writers share their experiences and to each discuss the tools and totems that they use to create work. I feel just incredibly energized and inspired by this group of Austinites that are so dedicated to their craft and who are also so generous in opening up their homes and sharing their passion and their spaces with the public.
Image via Fusebox Festival.