Pasha Malla and Jeff Parker find poetry in the post-game interview

In their poetry collection Erratic Fire, Erratic Passion: The Poetry of Sportstalk, co-authors Pasha Malla and Jeff Parker succeed in bringing together two arguably disparate groups: poetry lovers and sports fans. Using quotes from athlete interviews, Malla and Parker have put together a collection that showcases how poetic post-game interviews can be.

True to their collaborative nature, Pasha and Jeff co-answer our patented literary questionnaire, fielding questions from fellow writers like José Bautista fields fly balls.


1. Heather O'Neill asks, "What's the strangest thing you've done while researching a book?"
Pasha: For Erratic Fire, Erratic Passion, together Jeff and I watched about 100 hours of YouTube videos, keyboards at the ready every time an athlete said something interesting. That, in retrospect, seems a very strange - and parasitic - thing to do.

2. William Deverell asks, "Ever wanted to throttle an interviewer? Tell me about it." 
Jeff: I want to throttle all post-game sports interviewers who ask some variant on the unimaginative and unanswerable non-question, "Talk about what happened out there tonight?" Cue Rasheed Wallace's "Both teams played hard" riff and let the poor guy/gal hit the showers.

3. Alan Bradley asks: "Enumerate the differences between the writing you and the real you. Amplify."
Pasha: Writing me: insecure, anxious, over-compensatory. Real me: slightly less so.

4. Karen Solie asks, "Do you listen to music when you write, or do you require or prefer silence? Can you work in cafés? Do you have a choice?" 
Jeff: I actually require the din of a public space to interfere with my own idiotic thoughts. If it were possible, I'd probably do my best writing tucked away in a dark corner of an arena rock concert. 

5. Erin Bow asks, "Do you love your villains?"
Pasha: In Erratic Fire, Erratic Passion the only identified "villain" is Tiger Williams (though arguably Lance Armstrong is a sort of villain too, as are all the bigots we quote in "Let the Thugs Play"). Could I love someone who once said, "This ain't a game for fags"? Doubtful.

6. David McGimpsey asks, "If a robot wrote beautiful poetry, should the robot be eligible to win the Governor General's Award?" 
Jeff: You know the answer to this, Dave. The only rule is: Don't have sex with the robot!

7. Bill Richardson asks, "There is no word in English for the horrible feeling of finding a typo or some other grievous error in your own printed book. What should that word be?"
Pasha: Shitballs.

8. Nino Ricci asks, "What would an ideal review of a book you wrote look like?" 
Jeff: For this book of found poetry, I would take, "In spite of the fact that he didn't write it, this is his best book" over "Because of the fact that he didn't write it, this is his best book." Both of which are probably true.

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