1. What’s your favorite song to dance to?
“This Must be the Place” by Talking Heads, though I sound like the perfect stereotype of someone in their twenties.
2. Describe your personal hell.
An UberPool where the other passengers are wearing perfume.
3. What’s something that always makes you laugh?
Susan Sontag shady frustrated interview/Camille Paglia’s maniacal response. If you haven’t watched, brace yourself for a life-changing video:
4. You’re sucked into a bad movie and you have to choose a point in history to live out the rest of your years. What time do you choose and why?
Some time in Ancient Egypt. I don’t know, but if you have a society that lasts like 3,000 years, you must be doing SOMETHING right.
5. What’s a gif that you can relate to?
6. You’re hit by lightning. What happens?
Widespread tissue damage, cardiac arrhythmia, and loss of consciousness.
7. It’s snowing outside, how do you feel?
Calm, a bit trapped, but in a good mood to read.
8. What’s a cat picture you can get behind?
Any picture of my cats Beef and Panini. Here’s one:
9. Where did you write most of your book? Why?
I wrote most of Losing Miami in my partially windowless apartment in Philadelphia, far away from Miami. Every so often, when I was home for vacation, I’d go to the beach to take notes. The beach, as it were, is the scene of the moving coastline and the potential sinking, even as it is the emblem of Miami’s potential for *fun*.
10. What are your struggles and strengths as a writer?
I think I’m good at conceiving of a project’s ability to scale up or down, which means conceiving of a book’s contours comes easily to me. I think I’m a better book writer than I am a poem writer. I struggle a bit with making the individual parts of a book-machine (aka the poems) splendidly functional. Instead, I make them fragmented and unapproachable, so that one has to look across poems to find magic and meaning. A struggle and a strength!
11. Tell us a little about your writing process. What works, what doesn’t, what doesn’t but you still try anyway?
I write late at night, usually in spurts. It’s a very undecorated scene of writing. I wish I woke up with the sun to write in longhand or some bullshit, but I really don’t. I open Microsoft Word after my partner has gone to bed and I try to spit something out. Eventually, something clicks and a book comes out. Hoorah!
GABRIEL OJEDA-SAGUÉ is a gay, Latino Leo raised in Miami, currently living in Chicago. He is the author of the poetry books Jazzercise is a Language ( The Operating System, 2018), on the exercise craze of the 1980s, and Oil and Candle(Timeless, Infinite Light, 2016), on ritual and racism. He is also the author of chapbooks on gay sex, Cher, the Legend of Zelda, and anxious bilingualism. He is currently a PhD candidate in English at the University of Chicago.