Meet the Editors: An Interview with Managing Editor, Josh Brandon
We get a new staff every year here at BWR. We (the editors) interviewed each other so that you (the world) could get a sense of who we are as readers.
Interview by KELSEY NUTTALL
Kelsey Nuttall: How do you like your skin these days?
Josh Brandon: Haven’t had any complaints! I have a routine that I’ve grown accustomed to. It changes often. But always makes sense to me and is thus still a routine. The skin, she is plush, plump, beautiful, dewy. All the adjectives they put in skincare ads. Thank you for asking.
KN: Where do your soul strings and BWR’s intertwine, where, if anywhere, do they pull a little uncomfortably? How might you re-wire yourselves?
JB: Experimentation with form and content is definitely my jam, and this is what BWR is all about. Do we always agree on what exactly that is? No. Of course not! But “experimental” as a qualifier is real tricky and can be a slippery slope at times, so it’s a unique balance I think we’re all constantly reckoning with.
KN: What’s up with Tuscaloosa, Alabama? If you were writing a travel guide to the place, where would you recommend people eat barbecue… and what else?
JB: I’ve tried to dive as deep as I can into Lake Nicol to get to the bottom of this. Get it? GET IT? Oh but I do love me some ribs. That’s my go-to dish at any new BBQ joint and I have to say I’m partial to Jim N’ Nick’s with Dreamland coming in close at #2. The other places I mainly frequent are anything with “buffet” in it. The two Chinese buffets, Sitar, Cici’s pizza… I feel like my travel guide would not be very nuanced now that I think about it.
KN: Have you been listening to new Harry Styles? It’s good. (Fine, but what have you been listening to and when do you listen to it and what does it do to you and what do you do with it?)
JB: No. But these are the artists I currently have on repeat: Tierra Whack, Qveen Herby, Doja Cat and Rico Nasty. They all have a very particular way of making me feel like I’m a bad bitch. Which is nice. Adds a spring in my step.
KN: If you could carve out a perfect workspace what would it be? (Let’s share a treehouse or something—fun.)
JB: My perfect workspace would be the foggy, drab field where Kate Bush filmed her Wuthering Heights music video (the “red” version, of course). Preferably with me in the same dress she wore in the video. Doing the choreo and lip syncing to the tune.
I’d rather just be Kate Bush performing Wuthering Heights.
KN: You are very clean (in a literal, brooming-mopping sense)—where do you leave room for messiness? How do you think about cleanliness and messiness in your work?
JB: Why thank you. My gut us telling me that I channel any messiness through my ravenous consumption of reality TV. Manufactured drama just really does it for me, ya know? And I’m honestly not sure. Is the fact that I still just want to really lean into emo-ness in my poetry sometimes (most times) à la me in high school messy?
KN: In the last year, what have you written that vibrates the liveliest for you? How do you sustain vibrating pieces? What will you bring to life next?
JB: I have about three projects that currently rotating between right now and maybe for the rest of time: an essay where I talk about lemons and gender (mine), an ongoing project about inherited trauma (I think), and a recipe/poem chapbook-thing that’s sad and midwestern as all get out.
Josh Brandon is here, they’re queer, and so full of fear.