We are so excited to welcome Kaz to the team as our new Assistant Editor – our first ever, who will be reading with us, and helping to keep our musical-paint-splattered machine well oiled.
Hi, Kaz. Welcome to the team! Where are you based right now?
I currently live in Las Vegas, NV, but I'm actually less than two months away from moving to Milwaukee, WI! I'll be starting UWM's PhD program in Creative Writing (Poetry) and I could not be more excited.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I get obsessed with things: books, authors, TV shows, food, colors, space, fashion, history. I have an Instagram just for my dog. The Downy Snuggle Bear makes me irrationally angry. I've memorized swaths of text, but please don't ask me when anyone's birthday is, including my own. Half my jokes come from stolen stand-up comedy routines. I have three Leonard Cohen related tattoos.
What are you most excited for in your new role as Assistant Editor?
Reading submissions, definitely. I'm obviously thrilled to be working on any and every part of the magazine, but I'm most excited about reading as many new authors as I can, and hopefully helping them find a home for their work here at Synaesthesia.
What will you be looking out for in submissions to Synaesthesia?
I'm really interested in writing with edge. Not grit, necessarily - I'm over the 'everything must be macabre to be Real and True' trend. But I'm drawn to work that doesn't sugarcoat the difficult or gloss over what makes it jagged. I want it raw. I want to feel like someone kicked me in the throat when I'm done reading, and then handed me a peony. I want to feel like I've been taken hostage by a piece, that if I don't share it with someone in the next thirty seconds, I'll explode. And once I do share it, it's an explosion of glitter.
What keeps you writing?
Tell us your favourite opening line.
This one kept me up at night. But the first thing that came to mind was Virginia Woolf's, Mrs. Dalloway said she would buy the flowers herself. I love the simplicity. I love the alliteration, the way it rolls off your tongue. I love how much of the character it encapsulates in one line. For a novel that takes place, ostensibly, over a single day, not a sentence is wasted. The whole novel is in that first line, if you look hard enough.
You are also a contributor! What inspired your poetry in our You, Me issue?
I'm really fascinated by women's untold or half-told stories, especially in mythology and fairy tales. We get these little snippets of histories, but they're almost always told from a male perspective. Take Persephone, for example - we know the bare facts of her story, but not how she felt about any of it: her kidnapping, living in the underworld, her marriage to Hades, her friendship with Hekate, her relationship with her mother, Demeter. I find those gaps so compelling. I'm very interested in the idea of reclaiming women's voices out of a male-dominated canon, and attempting, in my own way, to give them the room and language to speak in a modern context.
Quickfire round! Biggest fear?
Biggest pet peeve?
Superficially, the sound of shuffling feet.
I'm not sure what this says about me, but I am ride or die for Lady Macbeth.
Climbing Dunsinane in Scotland.
Kathryne (Kaz) Gargano is a poet and editor recently transplanted to Milwaukee, WI. She’s working on her PhD in Creative Writing from UWM, and has been published in magazines and journals such as The Fem, Indicia, Synaesthesia, and The Colorado Review. She works as a teaching assistant and a part-time writer for an advertising agency based out of Las Vegas. he is fascinated by mythology of all kinds, queer and feminist lit, Shakespeare, and anything involving witches.