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Transformation: An Interview with Rick Christman, author of The Burden of Memory

Christman 1

I am the author of three books, Falling in Love at the End of the World, a collection of stories, Searching for Mozart, a collection of poems, and most recently The Burden of Memory, a literary crime novel. I was a professor of English for twenty-five years in Des Moines, Iowa, and now I am retired to the South Carolina Low Country.

You can buy The Burden of Memory here.

Are you a writer, too? Submit your manuscript to Atmosphere Press.

Tell us the story of your book’s title. Was it easy to find, or did it take forever?

Actually, the title Burden of Memory came out of discussions with my partner after she read an early draft. She saw the novel as essentially about transformation. And she was right.

Who/what made you want to write? Was there a particular person, or particular writers/works/art forms that influenced you?

After I returned from the trauma of the Vietnam War, I knew that I had to write about the experience. I met Tim O’Brien in the 1980s and he influenced me. He encouraged me to continue on and work hard and things would turn out right. And they have!

What other professions have you worked in? What’s something about you that your readers wouldn’t know?

I worked in a newspaper’s classified section, as a desk clerk, and as a bartender.

What was the most rewarding/meaningful part of publishing your book?

Working with a great editor, Sam O’Neil, at Atmosphere Press.

If your book had a soundtrack, what are some songs that would be on it?

Certainly Your Song, written by Bernie Taupin and sung by Elton John.

What new writing projects are you currently working on? Or, other projects that are not writing?

I am getting close to finishing my next novel, STORIES CAN SAVE US. The novel has alternating narratives: one character who went to the war and the other who stayed home. My partner says this book will be the best I’ve ever done.

You can buy The Burden of Memory here.

Are you a writer, too? Submit your manuscript to Atmosphere Press.

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