I like how this is written — there is some deception here. Tell us about your unreliable narrator, and where this story idea came from.
I once worked at a university where there had been, before my time, a psychology professor who used to walk an invisible dog around campus. I only heard the story, but I remembered how in fourth grade a classmate had brought back from Disneyland a wire leash with attached collar. She would flick her wrist just right, and it looked like something was pulling on the leash. Those two images came together into a character, and then I started to ask the questions that led to the story. That’s when I realized the professor was only a secondary character and a catalyst and that the real story belonged to the woman trapped between fear and hope, past and future.
Do you have any writing habits? When & where do you do most of your writing?
I have all sorts of writing habits, most of them bad, as in not doing enough of it. But I’ve recently recommitted to writing thirty minutes a day, even on my busiest days, in order to stay in touch with my own work and my sense of myself as a writer.
What else are you working on now?
I’ve been working on a novel and on my flash fiction collection.
What have you read lately that you loved?
I recently re-read Junot Diaz’s The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao and was stunned all over again by what a deeply moral novel it is, how it tells such a big story of what it is to claim your humanity in a world that often makes you feel powerless.