Welcome to WOLF NOTES, where interview questions stray from the rest of the pack. It’s nice to know the usual stuff like where an author gets their inspiration and why they write, but sometimes we need a little fun in our lives.
Ann Quinn’s poetry was selected by Stanley Plumly as first place winner in the 2015 Bethesda Literary Arts Festival poetry contest and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her work is published in Potomac Review, Little Patuxent Review, Beechwood Review, Haibun Today, and Snapdragon, and is included in the anthology Red Sky: Poetry on the Global Epidemic of Violence Against Women. The daughter of a Naval Aviator who went to elementary school in Pax River, several of Ann’s poems in “Final Deployment” reflect on that time. Ann lives in Maryland with her family where she teaches music and plays clarinet with the Columbia Orchestra. Her degrees are in music performance; she fell in love with poetry in mid-life. Her chapbook, “Final Deployment,” was published by Finishing Line Press in 2018. Please visit online at www.annquinn.net.
Wolf: If you could be any animal in the universe, what would it be and why?
Ann: I would be a Galapagos tortoise. I love islands, I love the sea, and I love the slow, contemplative life.
Wolf: That sounds great. If you had to pick a weapon, what would it be and why?
Ann: Pepper spray. I hear that it is very effective, and I have no desire to kill or wound another.
Wolf: You’ve just been turned into a plant. Describe yourself.
Ann: I am a sycamore tree, 54 years old. I am tall and graceful. My skin (bark) is somewhat peeling and patchy, but this just adds to my interest and beauty. I live near a river and communicate with the other trees in the valley. I have a lot of family nearby as we all love the water so, but we also get along with our neighbors — the maples, dogwoods, etc. I proudly house families of squirrels and birds. I also enjoy my insect guests. It is wonderful being able to start over every spring with new foliage.
Wolf: That sounds beautiful. If you could have a super power, what would it be?
Wolf: Soaring through the air is fun. It’s also good for escaping danger. There is a door at the end of a dark, damp corridor. You hear rumbling. What do you do?
Ann: Walk the other way and alert someone.
Wolf: What five items would you want to have in a post-cataclysmic world?
Ann: A large box of matches or a lighter that would last a long time. A soft blanket that dries easily. A water purifier. Another person, preferably my husband. Soap.
Wolf: What story are you working on now?
Ann: I have been working on a set of poems about my grandmother, who was born in a tiny farm community in Illinois in 1914 and thought she would always live there, but in 1949 she moved to St. Petersburg, FL, where she spent the rest of her life. Some of these poems have found their way into my graduate thesis, which is due at the end of April. I will graduate with my MFA in poetry from Pacific Lutheran University in August.
Wolf: What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
Ann: Make dinner, clean the kitchen, organize my stuff, read the NY Times—you know, procrastinate. I’m not a TV watcher but have enjoyed “Stranger Things” lately with my 13-year-old daughter. I also do yoga and practice clarinet (which I teach).
Wolf: Feel free to come to my house next time you need to procrastinate. Thanks for visiting.
You can connect with Ann at this link: www.annquinn.net