This week we talk to Andrew Roff about ‘The Lost Hour’ which appears in Time, the latest Microlit anthology edited by Cassandra Atherton and published in 2018 by Spineless Wonders. In this interview, Andrew talks about his approach to writing microlit, what he is reading right now and his favourite time of year for putting pen to paper.
- Tell us about the inspiration behind your microlit for the Time.
I usually have the sense that time is passing too quickly. Too quickly to achieve everything I want to do in a day, a year. I wanted to explore that idea from the perspective of someone who no longer needs to worry about the passing of time.
- When it comes to microlit, do you generally start wide and then cut down or do you always plan to write a particular piece as microlit?
Microlit is a great form for exploring self-contained, suggestive things. Perhaps a concept, or a character’s train of thought, or a mood. In that way, it’s more like a poem than a story. A story is busy with conflict, characters, sequels and resolutions. When I’ve tried and failed to write microlit, it’s because I’ve tried to pack in too much plot.
- How do you balance reading time with writing time? And tell us about the book/s you are reading at the moment.
I write in the mornings when my mind is clear, and read in the afternoons and evenings. Because I’m concentrating on short fiction right now, I’m reading a lot of collections. I just finished Carmel Bird’s The Dead Aviatrix, which I loved, and I’ve started Plane Tree Drive by Lynette Washington. I went to the Australian Short Story Festival this year, and came home with a massive reading pile.
- What is your favourite season? Do you prefer to write in winter or summer and why?
I like writing in winter, wearing ugg boots and a thick jumper and pausing every now and then to blow my nose. But spring is the best: my desk overlooks the canopy of a large plane tree, and in spring it’s full of rainbow lorikeets flitting and pecking, like thoughts in my brain.
ANDREW ROFF‘s first manuscript was shortlisted for the Wakefield Press Unpublished Manuscript Award at the 2016 Adelaide Festival Awards for Literature. His short fiction has appeared in Antithesis Journal and Antipodean SF. He tweets@roffwrites.