Who Are You and What Do You Do for The Offbeat?
I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Writing, Rhetoric and American Cultures at Michigan State University, and I am the faculty instructor/editor for The Offbeat. I’m also a writer of fiction and nonfiction myself.

What Do You Love Most About The Offbeat?
The best part of working with The Offbeat is the chance to explore brand new literature with new students every year. A literary magazine is a pretty amazing enterprise–writers whom we do not know send to us their voices. They entrust us, editors whom they have not met, to help them share those voices in the very best manner that we can. That’s a gift to us, and a responsibility for us to give forward, the mission of editors.

What Are Your Favorite Kinds of Offbeat Stories?
I’m especially partial to works that experiment with form and voice. Something I’ve never seen before is something I want to see.

What is Your Favorite Thing About Words?
They live and breathe and mean. I quote Toni Morrison: “We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives.”

What Is One Fact The Offbeaters (Our Readers/Contributors) MUST Learn About You?
I have a cat that can open doors.

What is Your Favorite Scientific Element and Why?
I’ve always been a little partial to mercury. A metal that’s liquid at room temperature. Good for temperatures, bad for temperaments, mercurial as an adjective.

An Offbeat Interview With: The Offbeat Editor-in-Chief, Curtis VanDonkelaar

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