Last year I had the opportunity for a few uninterrupted conversations with my friend and colleague Dr. Peter Grandbois, and turned it into an interview for Word Riot. Anyone could tell from that interview what a thoughtful and intelligent man he is; and anyone reading anything he’s written, whether it is an essay in Writers Chronicle, a short story in Mississippi Review or Boulevard, his novel The Gravedigger, or his memoir Arsenic Lobster, knows his talent.
Peter is finishing up his final semester here in No Cal., and taking off for Denison University in Ohio, (one of US News and World Report’s Tier One Best Colleges) where he will have a better teaching schedule, be better paid, and have to struggle through snowy winters.
Of course, I am happy for him and his family, and wish him all the happiness he can find. And I hope as well that when Nahoonkara comes out from Etruscan in November of this year, he’ll consider coming back and letting us throw him a release party.
“The sheer immensity of distractions in the postmodern world make it nearly impossible for us to sit still and move inward–the traditional realm of religion and spiritual practice. I believe that one of literature’s (or art for that matter) most important functions is to get us to slow down, to move inward and pay attention to the ineffable. We can understand everything about ourselves as humans in terms of our objective reality–the body and the mind, but if we don’t nurture the spirit, we are disconnected from ourselves.”