Mary Miller

“I approach every beginning like, ‘Okay, let’s see if this goes anywhere.’ About half the time, even though I may like my sentences and the characters, there’s just too little progression. Of course, I always want to write something that’s brilliant and funny and breaks the reader’s heart, and no story ever measures up to this ideal, but sometimes I get something I can live with…”

Read Mary’s first and final draft in our forthcoming Issue 0, available for pre-order now.

Mary Miller grew up in Jackson, Mississippi. She is the author of two collections of short stories, Big World (Short Flight/Long Drive Books, 2009), and Always Happy Hour (Liveright, 2017), as well as the novels The Last Days of California (Liveright, 2014) and Biloxi (Liveright, 2019). Her stories have appeared in The Paris Review, the Oxford American, New Stories from the South, Norton's Seagull Book of Stories, The Best of McSweeney’s Quarterly, American Short Fiction, Mississippi Review, and many others. She is a former James A. Michener Fellow in Fiction at the University of Texas and John and Renée Grisham Writer-in-Residence at Ole Miss. She lives in Oxford, Mississippi with her husband, Lucky, and her dog, Winter.

Below: the writer’s dog and constant writing companion