SmokeLong Quarterly

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Smoking With Tiffany Poremba

(Read the Story) June 15, 2007

Tiffany Poremba

"Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear and Pipe" by Vincent Van Gogh

How did this ending end up here, in this story?

Forgive me for sounding all warm and fuzzy (I can’t help it—I love warm and fuzzy.) Anyway, I am just a little obsessed with happiness, and I think I just wanted this story to be crazy happy and sweet, sweet hearted. It’s my way of wishing people well via story I guess. And, yeah, mystical, happy and trashy—it’s definitely a running thing for me with writing.

What’s the best midnight of your life?

The best midnight of my life—oh my. My favorite recent one was in this awesome place called Slab City out in the Californian desert by the Salton Sea. It looks a little like Mad Max Beyond the Thunderdome, and it’s this amazing community of nomad squatters. There’s no electricity, no nothing, just trailers and bonfires, stuff like that. They have this open air “nightclub” called the Range made of two old metal trailers, a stage and old movie seats. It was a Saturday and there was this old honkey tonk lounge act (basically 80 year olds on lots of medication), and we all sat under the stars, listened to slide guitar, laughed and told stories under this huge full moon desert sky. They took us right in. They even offered us our own Airstream for the evening. Highly recommended. Just don’t get pulled over by the Border Patrol afterwards. I swore they were going to give us the cavity search.

Tell us about a typical day with you and the ants in the kitchen.

I eat a fair amount of chocolate and Omega 3 oils. I write ads involving mutated dogs… I meditate and chant (to create the requisite warm and fuzziness). I listen to fairly obnoxious music, and I pester my friends a lot. I’m on the phone too much. I am also writing a novel (about the desert and about all the crazy stories from out there…Hellfire and Happiness we’re calling it. I think I am going to start sacrificing goats until I can get it done! As for the ants, I think I showed them who’s boss—for now.

You “write ads by day.” What kind of ads? What’s your favorite ad you’ve created?

My favorite ads I’ve done are for Jolt Cola and they feature a mutant dog called Yaya the Pugwahwa—a Pugwahwa being a cross between a Pug and a Chiuahaha. Let’s just say he’s very happy and very twitchy, and he goes around vibrating everywhere just like a good little Jolt drinker should. You so think I am a hack now! But they are strategically on point— really! and what’s not to love about a dog named Yaya the Pugwahwa! It’s my student work though so you won’t be seeing him unless I can convince Jolt. Anyone know anyone at Jolt?

The titles of the stories in this issue wowed me and got me thinking about the value of the great title. What are some great titles—for novels, stories, movies, albums, CDs, and the like? And what is the worst title you’ve ever encountered?

The worst title? I don’t know. Honestly. But I’m waiting for a book called Hemorroids. Would that not be awesome? That or something with banana hammock. I love that expression. Total tacky poetry! Yay tacky poetry.

About the Author

Tiffany Poremba writes ads by day, novels by night. Once upon a time she was a features writer for Soma and Speak magazines. She lives in Atlanta with no dogs, kids, just some ants in the kitchen.

About the Artist

Vincent Willem van Gogh was a Dutch post-impressionist painter who posthumously became one of the most famous and influential figures in the history of Western art.

This interview appeared in Issue Seventeen of SmokeLong Quarterly.
SmokeLong Quarterly Issue Seventeen

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