B. Morris Allen (“The Humblebract Expedition”) – Fun + Love, (“Fountainhead”) – Longing + Sorrow

Interviewer: In “The Humblebract Expedition,” the key to fun is “a lack of appreciation of risk” and a true sign of love is “eyes tightened at the corners,” or, in other words, pain. How did you manage to utilize the full power of fun and love in your story without …

Thom Connors (“Naves Autem Vacuo”) – Misery + Dislike

Interviewer: In the beginning of “Naves Autem Vacuo,” Lauren loves silence, but by the end, she grows to hate it. Usually ‘dislike’ is directed toward a person or thing, not a lack thereof. How did your unique construction of the meaning of ‘dislike’ in this story contribute to your other assigned …

David Hammond (“That Moment You Realize”) – Boredom + Tension

Interviewer: “That Moment You Realize” is somehow both boring on the one hand and hilarious on the other. Your assigned emotions, ‘boredom’ and ‘tension’, are at odds with each other; if Victor felt too much tension, he wouldn’t feel so bored after quitting his job as a meme generator. How …

A. Martine (“Faux Ami”) – Curiosity + Respect

Interviewer: In “Faux Ami”, your two assigned emotions, curiosity and respect, both involve a certain level of sophistication. When Moira discovers the Scarlett Inn, curiosity trumps her fear, for “The impulse [to run away] was nevertheless muffled by a more potent inclination, that which had made her follow the two …

L’Erin Ogle (“Shiver Soft Feathers”) – Despair + Trepidation

Interviewer: In “Shiver Soft Feathers,” the only glimmer of hope derives from darkness: “There’s hope in the huntress stalking the night. There’s none in the daylight.” After being assigned ‘despair’ and ‘trepidation,’ what did your writing process look like? How did you arrive at the idea of “The Spotted Girl” …

Samuel Chapman (“Universe of Ghosts”) – Joy + Friendship

Interviewer: In “Universe of Ghosts”, Esther understands that “Without a friend, the joy I’ve tried to rebuild slips farther and farther away.” Why did you choose the peculiar (yet fascinating!) friendship between an AI and a ghost to articulate the meaning of joy? Samuel Chapman: I’ve always been partial to …

Adan Berkowitz (“Orl, His Master, and the Egg”) – Respect + Disgust

Interviewer: As Orl tells his pupil at the end of “Orl, His Master, and the Egg”, “One day, when your respect for me is matched with disgust, you will understand.” During the writing process, how did you construct your characters in order to properly convey this relationship between respect and …