Interview with John Hanson, one of Issue 12’s contest winners

Thanks for taking the time to come to Bop Dead City’s site, first of all. Send your work or buy someone else’s while you’re here.

Issue 13’s coming along swimmingly, as we’ve already gone through a couple hundred submissions from around the world and whittled it down to about 10 pieces so far, but we’ve got room for your poem or story, provided it’s 1) good and 2) in the inbox on September 1 or earlier.

In the meantime, enjoy the start of our interview series with our Issue 12 authors, beginning with John. His story ” Portrait of Jan and Ola in Berlin” got him $20 and probably the accomplishment that will appear on his tombstone.


Describe your writing in 25 words or less.

Swimming through shit to find gold.

Tell us about your contest winning story “Portrait of Jan and Ola in Berlin.”

The story’s about a boy and girl meeting in the great, seedy international metropolis of Berlin. Their brief romance is silhouetted by a world they are completely at odds with; it’s made stronger because of that. It’s kind of Holden-Caulfieldy in a way I suppose, a little more optimistic though.

Is this your first contest win? How did it feel?

It is my first, really unexpected and thrilling.

Who or what inspires you to write?

I remember finishing reading my first Tom Robbins at around midnight, I stayed up until seven writing longhand trying to get down a few words or a sentence that would resemble one of his.

Who are some of your favorite authors?

Hermann Hesse, Anaïs Nin, Milan Kundera, pretty much all of the Russians, Clarice Lispector

What are you working on right now?

Destroying my liver. And a satirical novel set in my home city of Melbourne.

Where can we read your work next?

I’ve got a piece coming up in the Eunoia Review and The Zodiac Review.

Do you have any advice for fellow writers?

Bukowski said it best- don’t try. It can’t hurt to indulge all your emotions either.

Anything else you’d like to say?

Thanks again and keep it all up.

About bopdeadcity

Bop Dead City is an independent, quarterly literary magazine. We are seeking new writers who have a great story to tell. Sound craftsmanship couldn't hurt either. All of our issues are available for purchase here on the site through Paypal. If you’d like to know more about what type of work we publish, reading a back issue would be the best way to do it. View all posts by bopdeadcity

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