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Nick Tramdack

Triple Bind, fiction, Issue 20, September 1, 2012

The Tenth Part of Magic, fiction, Issue 35, June 1, 2016

Nick Tramdack was born in Cleveland in 1985. He got his degree in English from the University of Chicago and attended Clarion West in 2011. His day jobs have included wrangling shopping carts, manufacturing milk bottles, testing chewing gum, editing ebooks, proofreading financial reports, and hunting for lost books in the vast stacks of Regenstein Library. He lives and works in Chicago.

Get to know Nick...

Birthdate? June 11, 1985

What themes do you like to write about? It's probably a doomed enterprise for a writer to try to list his or her favorite themes, but I will say that I enjoy writing stories that handle speculative material with a certain level of rigor. It's kind of the opposite approach from magical realism -- I enjoy poking and prodding at the fantastic stuff directly, rather than letting it bleed into metaphor or operate on the fringes of perception. That said, this story might not fit into either category....

Certain elements that tend to reoccur in my stories include clocks, coins, duels, the wuxia convention of the "martial world," mental conditioning, decadent/gothic/19th-century-influenced secondary-world settings, and of course, gratuitous violence.
What books and/or stories have most resonated with you as an author? Why? How do these stories and their characters find expression in your work? Besides works from the fantastic/SFnal/speculative/gothic/whateveryawannacallit tradition, I enjoy reading classic literature -- particularly for purposes of shameless literary theft. It's less about mimicking characters and settings than building a story like magpie's nest: a hoard of pilfered styles, philosophies, and trinkets. This story borrows lots of vocab and thematic material from Chaucer's "The Canon's Yeoman's Tale," while employing certain conventions of the police procedural genre. I hope you enjoy the combination.

When did you start writing? I've always been a compulsive jotter & note taker. I started writing seriously in my third year of college, in 2006 or so. It took me four years before I sold anything though!

When and what and where did you first get published? My first story sale was a 100-word micro-fiction called "Bullet Menagerie" in the Thackery T. Lambshead Cabinet of Curiosities, edited by Ann & Jeff VanderMeer. To this day I've never heard from anyone who's read it, but I was delighted to have my first publication appear in the same book as heroes of mine like Alan Moore & China Mieville.

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