Interview with the Author: Rich Larson

For many the thrill inherent to Science Fiction lays in the feeling of adventure. There is an escapism in stories about trekking across worlds unknown, or galaxies far away.

Not so for Rich Larson, author of ‘Exit’ in the Stargazers microfiction collection.

I was born in Galmi, Niger, and raised in an international missions community — a third culture that wasn’t Nigerien, but definitely not North American either. That liminal upbringing is probably responsible for a lot of my writing, which often explores outsiderness, and for a lot of my traveling,” Larson tells AE. “Which is often less about me being adventurous and more about me always getting antsy to leave.”

‘Exit’ tells the story of Bess who has a blinking memory of her former relationship tucked into her inbox, the product of her former lover, neuro-artist Masha, which translates the fleeting emotions of their final night together.

It’s a poetic meditation on illusions of something haunting and beautiful that you can see but may no longer be there – much like the oft-repeated modern fable that many of the stars we see in our night sky are long dead ghosts in the heaven above.

“I’ve always liked the challenge of condensing a story, and there are numerous pieces of flash and microfiction sprinkled throughout my body of work,” Larson notes. “Man, that sounds pretentious, ‘body of work.’ I guess I should say oeuvre. Much humbler.”

Author of the novel Annex (2018) as well as the short-story anthology Tomorrow Factory (2018), Larson has has lived in Canada, USA, and Spain, and is now based in Prague, Czech Republic where he is currently wrestling with his next novel.

“Novels are kind of the bane of my existence. I prefer short stories.”

His affinity for short stories as well as for Stargazers theme of stars led him to submit to the project.

“They’re big burning balls of gas. What’s not to like?” 

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