Jennifer E. Smith on International MFA Programs

by Salvatore Pane

It had quite a bit of influence; I don’t know if I would have ever written this book if it hadn’t been for my time over there.  I had a couple of friends studying in London at the same time, and I visited them often, just wandering around the city, which became a huge inspiration for the later parts of Statistical Probability.  Over the past few months, I’ve had a lot of readers email to ask whether I’m from the US or the UK, because they genuinely couldn’t tell while reading, and that’s a huge compliment.  With the dialogue, in particular, you want it to feel authentic, so I was especially conscious of this with Oliver.  I did have a Scottish friend read an early draft, and she caught me out on a few things (saying “yard” instead of “garden” and “store” instead of “shop”), but my time over there definitely helped with that and everything else.

–Jennifer E. Smith in Braddock Avenue Books