Our inscrutable Managing Editor Chelsea Hickok has given us a look into her position at HFR and a few tidbits about herself as well. In this interview we will get a look at what it takes to assemble a body of work into a gleaming literary journal.

Leslie Verdugo: Chelsea, can you tell me about your responsibilities as managing editor for HFR?

Chelsea Hickok: I take care of the more logistical part of the journal. I’m the one who gets in contact with the contributors to send them publication agreements and to get their bios. I also construct the master list and go through print bids to get the journal made.

LV: You really have your hands in the journal’s creation. How long have you been with the magazine now?

CH: Since last fall, and I only did second reads then. I then filled out an application for my current position, answered a few essay questions, and here I am.

LV: Did you have experience for your current position?

CH: I mostly learned as I went along.

LV: Nice. So when you were a reader for the journal did you have a certain pet peeve or something you looked out for in a story?

CH: I tended to avoid content based on the college perspective because we all have a pretty good idea of what college is like. Also there seemed to be a lot of cancer stories during my time, which I found hard to get into beyond just knowing the author wanted me to be sad.

LV: Right, there was more focus on the fact that they are victims rather than humans.

CH: Yeah, exactly.

LV: What year are you in now, Chelsea?

CH: I am now in my second year as a graduate student in the MFA fiction program.

LV: Is there anything you are focused on in your writing right now?

CH: I’m exploring the idea of food as it relates to the human experience. Right now I’m working on a story of a man in search of pelican meat.

LV: Wow, that’s an awesome topic to focus on, and the story sounds like it’s going to be an interesting read. Do you plan on staying with HFR?

CH: Yes, I do. I plan on applying for Editor next semester, and with the new staff we are planning on reimagining the journal.

LV: That’s pretty exciting! Speaking of exciting did you do anything fun this summer?

CH: I went on a road trip to Seattle with my man and a puppy named Wally short for Walter Pepercorn Peanut.  We also call him Walnut.

LV: That’s adorable. I have also been meaning to ask, what is the tattoo on your shoulder of? I can never get a good look at it.

CH: It’s the 1978 cover art for Virginia Woolf’s novel To the Lighthouse. It’s a book a come back to year after year, always taking away something new and illuminating about the human condition.

LV: I see, well thank you for your time and for the insight Chelsea!

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Chelsea Hickok is working towards her MFA in Fiction Writing at ASU.  She is currently the Managing Editor of Hayden's Ferry Review