I met Jim Shepard yesterday. My department at SC sponsored a three-part reading series with him over the course of two days. First he gave a craft conversation on teenage narrators. Second, yesterday he read an excerpt from "Pleasure Boating in Lituya Bay" from Like You'd Understand Anyway before reading a new piece of flash fiction. Third, he lead our workshop last night. Beyond that, before his reading, I spent some time with him in the hallway just cracking jokes + fucking around.
Here are some things I learned about him:
1. No one knows how to make Aimee Bender blush more violently or more quickly than Jim Shepard. It's like a skill he has--making Aimee Bender embarrassed. I've tried it, but it's really hard. But this dude is a natural. He was joking about how he was going to tell us about her dirty sexual past + the next thing I know, her face is the same color as her V-neck (a bright, Hester Prynne burgundy). Later on:
--I've never seen you blush like that before, I said.
--Yeah, it just happens, she said.
--This one time, I was being a little aggressive with one of my students + then I started blushing.
--It's like preemptive blushing.
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