Don’t Write Alone | Interviews

“The most innocent thing you can do is want to create”: Robert J. Dau Prize Winner Isaac Hughes Green

Learn about Isaac Hughes Green’s short story “The First Time I Said It,” which was selected for ‘Best Debut Short Stories 2021.’

Best Debut Short Stories 2021: The PEN America Dau Prize

The Georgia ReviewThe Masters Review

The Georgia Review.

Where did you find the idea for this story?

What was your writing process like for this story?

The Georgia Reviewhe first time I said ithe next time I said it

The story has a cinematic quality to it, in that only a beat passes in real time from the opening scene to the end, and yet over the course of “The First Time I Said It,” we time travel back to crucial moments throughout the narrator’s life. How did you decide on this structure, and in what ways does your background in screenwriting and cinematography play into your fiction?

What is significant about the narrator wanting and studying to be an artist in the scheme of the story?

How has the Robert J. Dau Prize affected you?

What’s the best or worst writing advice you’ve ever received and why?

Finally, where do you discover new writing?

I discover new writing on social media, through the literary magazines I’m subscribed to, and through people I meet who recommend books to me.