Since no one hacked into my computer to read the stories I wasn’t submitting or peered through my living room window in the hopes of finding some insecure writer slugging it out with her laptop, the only way I was going to participate in a live reading series was if I bum-rushed the stage. Or started my own.
For a chunk of my early twenties, I had Brooklyn envy. The narrative in my head went something like I this: a “real” writer goes from college to a fascinating year abroad then returns to earn her MFA at Iowa. After a year in California as a Stegner Fellow, she moves to Brooklyn.
I’m in the Hollywood home of William Fraker, the six-time Oscar-nominated cinematographer of such legendary movies as Rosemary’s Baby, Bullitt, and WarGames. My crew is shooting our conversation for Old School New School, a documentary on the nature of creativity.
Back in June of 2000, sitting expectantly behind our Printers Row Book Fair table, one whole issue of After Hours under our belts, my co-editor Pat Hertel and I really didn’t know what lay ahead. We began with a vision of showcasing Chicago-area writers and artists, of presenting an outlet for the “Chicago voice.” Over the past 11 years, we’ve learned that there is not one voice, but many voices that together have created the style for which After Hours is known