Instead of a regular blog post this week, we invite you to check out our Faculty Spotlight. Here, we ask one of our MFA faculty members questions concerning their career, craft, and quirks.
For this edition, we chatted with Professor Susan Hubbard about her writing and future works. Author of the Ethical Vampire Series, Susan is a long-time fiction instructor who is returning from a much-deserved sabbatical for the Fall 2016 semester.
What inspired you to become a writer?
My love of reading, and my faith in it as a means of helping readers escape and evolve.
Early on, I read through the children and young adult sections at the local library and had moved on to the adult section by the time I was twelve. I created a newspaper about our neighborhood when I was seven and wrote a bad “novel” when I was ten. I was lucky to have teachers, in fourth grade and seventh grade in particular, who encouraged my writing and recommended new books to read.
How does teaching influence your writing process?
Teaching feeds my curiosity. I’m curious about almost everything. I talk to strangers, travel widely, pay attention to landscape and light, meditate, and take notes.
Teaching also makes me continue to question my uses and expectations of narratives. A good workshop makes every participant come alive to the world of their own writing, so my teaching and writing generally have complemented each other.
If you could be anywhere in the world and write, where would it be?
Right now, my writing hideaway on the Banana River is my favorite place. But I also am grateful for guest residencies at Yaddo, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Djerassi Resident Artists’ Project, and Cill RIalaig. In May, I’ll be a resident artist at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Ireland.
Any new projects?
I’m putting together Too Small to Be Seen from the Sky, a new collection of short stories, and doing research for a novella imagining my father’s secret life in St. Petersburg, FL. I’m also writing a paper for an AWP panel on breaking rules when we write.
Where can we find your work?
All of my books are available through local bookstores or through Amazon.com, and the Ethical Vampire Series has recently been issued as ebooks.
Can we find you in the world of social media and do you have an author website?
Susan Hubbard is the author of seven books, three of which as part of the Ethical Vampire Series. Her short story collection, Blue Money, won the Janet Heidinger Kakfa Prize for best book of prose by an American woman, and her first book, Walking on Ice, received the Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) Short Fiction Prize. Her short fiction has appeared in TriQuarterly, The Mississippi Review, Ploughshares, and other journals. Her fiction has been translated and published in more than fifteen countries. As an instructor, she has received teaching awards from Syracuse University, Cornell, and, of course, the University of Central Florida.