Casey Reinhardt is a writer from Buffalo, New York where she dreams up madness, most of which makes its way into a story or poem. Some will remain in the dream-realm for all eternity. Her work can be found in Apparition Lit and the TL;DR Press Women’s Anthology. Find her on twitter @yoscully.
Her story “Within the Red Fog” appeared in Issue Two.
What inspired your story?
“Within the Red Fog” started with a prompt, but what I wrote first was a 500-word disaster that was trying to be The Mist. I thought about it for a long time, kept the fog and ditched the rest. A few months later, on my way home after a long, awkward family Easter dinner, there was a man walking down the road with a 30-pack of Labatt Blue hoisted on his shoulder. I made him the main character and used the Easter dinner as a jumping off point. I have no idea who he was, but thanks Mr. Stranger.
When did you start writing?
I wrote like my life depended on it when I was young, and then went to college and wrote a lot of essays, like most. It sucked all of the creativity from my soul. There was a long muddling period through my 20s when nothing seemed to be working. The words were trite and ineffective. It was all sci-fi epic worldbuilding with no actual writing getting done. It took until I was 28 for me to realize I was a discovery writer. I just needed to pick up a pen and see where the story went. If I kept planning nothing was ever going to happen. Since that “aha” moment, I haven’t stopped to look back, just keep plowing forward. Many thanks to the few writing groups I’ve belonged to who never let me settle for the mediocre.
Who are your favourite writers?
Samantha Hunt first and foremost. She is just such a gritty storyteller who is unafraid of dark, weird corners of the mind. Margaret Atwood for the same reason. Jeff VanderMeer, for introducing me to The Weird with the Southern Reach trilogy.
What was the last book that blew your mind?
The Seasby Samantha Hunt. It’s a short, powerful little story that I could not put down. It’s weird and it was the first story with an Iraq War Vet I’ve ever read. I won’t spoil the ending, but when I closed the book after a binge-read I felt haunted for days. The voice is unmatched by anything else I’ve ever read.
What is your favourite TV show?
The X-files, hands down. I’m doing a re-watch now and just watched Pusher. (Cerulean blue. Cerulean makes me think of a breeze. A gentle breeze.)
If you could offer one piece of advice to your past self, what would it be?
Just write, goddammit. Let yourself suck for a while. Read more. Eventually you will suck less.
What writing projects are you working on now?
A Gothic historical fiction novel called With the Death of Edwin Donahuethat I finished last year. It’s a big diversion from sci-fi/fantasy, but I like exploring other genres.