A series of intimate and captivating interviews by Rachel Zucker with poets and artists about quotidian objects, experiences or obsessions, Commonplace conversations explore the recipes, advice, lists, anecdotes, quotes, politics, phobias, spiritual practices, and other non-Literary forms of knowledge that are vital to an artist’s life and work. One feels, when listening to Commonplace, the pleasure of eavesdropping on the kind of unexpected, intriguing connections that only happen when interesting people sit together in a small room and talk about their real concerns and ordinary lives.

Episode 75: Victoria Chang

Episode 75: Victoria Chang

Rachel Zucker speaks with poet, editor, teacher and former marketing consultant Victoria Chang about what writing in the third person makes possible, the liberation of formal constraints, mom-on-mom violence, how the literary community has changed over the years, how poetry finds us, shame, masks, letting poems tell you what to do, loving editing more than writing, community and difference, and the many kinds of literary and non-literary labor each of them does. They speak about Victoria’s recent book Barbie Chang and about Victoria’s forthcoming book, Obit, and so much more. 


Books by Victoria Chang

Barbie Chang (Copper Canyon, 2017)

Is Mommy? (With Marla Frazee) (Beach Lane, 2015)

The Boss (McSweeney’s, 2013)

Salvinia Molesta (University of Georgia Press, 2008)

Circle (Crab Orchard/Southern Illinois University Press, 2005)

Asian American Poetry: The Next Generation (Editor) (University of Illinois Press, 2004)

Other Books and Writers Mentioned in the Episode

Chen Chen

Kristin Chang 

Fatimah Asghar 

Paige Lewis 

Kaveh Akbar 

Cathy Park Hong 

Mary Ruefle

Louise Glück

Jorie Graham

Anne Carson

Terrance Hayes

Ilya Kaminsky 

Other Relevant Links

Commonplace interview with Richard Siken

Commonplace interview with Ilya Kaminsky

Victoria Chang at McSweeney’s

Copper Canyon Press

Antioch University 

CalArts School of Critical Studies

Episode 74: Rachel Zucker's SoundMachine

Episode 74: Rachel Zucker's SoundMachine