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Working with Words: Mira Schlosberg

Read Monday, 23 Apr 2018

Mira Schlosberg is a writer, editor and comics artist who is currently the editor of Voiceworks. They spoke with us about their underrated faves, a regrettable story about cyborgs and the unexpectedly cutthroat world of floristry. 

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What was the first piece of writing that made you laugh or cry?

Photograph of Mira Schlosberg

This is so cheesy, but the first time I remember crying at a book was the scene in Mrs Dalloway when Clarissa and Sally kiss.

Did you write during your childhood and during your teenage years?

In year six I wrote a story about a bunch of frogs living on a giant orange in space. It was very popular with the teachers and they had me adapt it into a play that all the younger students had to act in. As a teen I just wrote a lot of angsty fantasy and sci-fi. 

What day jobs have you held throughout your life, and how have those experiences influenced your writing?

I’ve worked as a florist’s assistant, a barista and a research assistant. They were all really good jobs for a writer because I got to learn cool facts about very specific topics and interact with a lot of strange people.

If you weren’t writing, what do you think you’d be doing instead?

Probably still editing and working in the arts somehow. I’ve thought about being a florist or a baker but I hate waking up early. Also the floristry world is way more cutthroat than you would expect.

The floristry world is way more cutthroat than you would expect.

What’s the best (or worst) advice you’ve received about writing?

The best writing advice I ever got was to study literature and just read a lot.

Have you ever kept a diary? Do you keep one now?

For a few years I wrote in a journal every day, but in the last year or so I’ve gotten out of the habit. I tend to write way too many details and take too much time, which is why I don’t do it so much anymore.

Which classic book do you consider overrated? Or which obscure, unsung gem do you think is underrated?

All straight white men in the canon are overrated. My underrated faves are Djuna Barnes, Banana Yoshimoto, Leonora Carrington and Charlotte Salomon.

All straight white men in the canon are overrated.

Do you have any strange writing habits, customs or superstitions?

When I write I like to listen to really upbeat pop music to trick myself into feeling good and override the urge to stress out and worry about whether the work is perfect or not.

Have you written or published anything in the past that you now wish you could go back and change?

So many things, but particularly one very regrettable short story about cyborgs and a song by the Dresden Dolls.

Please do not try to find this. 

Which artist, author or fictional character would you most like to have dinner with?

This is a very hard question, but maybe Behemoth, the giant talking cat from Mikhail Bulgakov’s The Master and Margarita.  

Mira’s comic Guidebook to Queer Jewish Spirituality will be available soon from the Glom Press webstore.

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The Wheeler Centre acknowledges the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation as the traditional owners of the land on which we work. We pay our respects to the people of the Kulin Nation and all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders, past and present.