Erin Roberts is a Black speculative fiction, game/interactive, and non-fiction writer with an MFA from the Stonecoast low-residency program out of the University of Southern Maine. She primarily writes about worlds that don’t yet (quite) exist – visions of the almost future, sideways glimpses into magic realms, quick trips into the land of the horrifyingly possible. She is also the Project Manager for the Writing Excuses Retreat.

What do you love most about writing?

Right now, what I love most about writing is that it gives me a way to process the world around me. Every choice I make as a writer – the characters I create, the ideas that resonate with me, the conflicts and themes that shape the story – are reflections of who I am and how I see the world. As that world shifts, so does my thinking and my writing. I’m reworking stories that once felt almost finished and exploring new unexpected ideas – about mutual aid, and justice, and the many ways to fight the world’s wrongs – that are coming to the forefront. At times, I feel a bit like a caterpillar hoping to become a butterfly, but I’m trying to sit back and enjoy the process and hope that readers will enjoy the creative work that comes from it.

What are you working on now, if anything?

I’m one of those writers who always has several irons in the fire, but two projects that are currently near and dear to my heart are an interactive fiction piece that explores what life would be like as an investigator in a city with a defunded/reimagined justice system and a story that brings together two women whose lives have been broken by their world’s memory-industrial complex – one addicted to forgetting, the other surrounded by the forgotten.

What excites you about your current project?

The two projects I mentioned are very different, but both give me the opportunity to think through the ways that systems affect individual lives. When I was growing up, a lot of the stories I read were about the way that a single person could change the world, but as a writer, I’m much more drawn to the ways that the world changes us and how we react to/accept/fight against those changes in our everyday beliefs and actions.

What is your favorite way to recharge, relax, and recuperate?

It’s a tie between singing and gaming – two activities where there’s no time or space to think about anything but the moment you’re in. That said, I’ve also been adding a few new hobbies to my repertoire this year that get me away from my keyboard – baking, sewing, and tending to a few plants.

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