Skip to content

The Gazette’s Ian McGillis Chats with Marianne Ackerman: On Satire and Short Fiction

Holy FoolsThe Montreal Gazette’s Ian McGillis recently interviewed author of Holy Fools + 2 Stories, Marianne Ackerman, who gave insight into the world of writing short fiction, creating characters and choosing the genre of her work.

The collection was recently published by Guernica Editions.

Though Holy Fools is Ackerman’s first published collection of short stories, the author had previously tried her hand at short fiction.

“I wrote five [short stories] about women who know a guy named Hart when he suddenly flees Montreal, then about Hart’s journal of the trip, then a straight account of his return to the city in time for his own funeral. My publisher said short stories wouldn’t sell so she called it a novel, Matters of Hart, and brought it out in 2005.”

Ackerman goes on to explain how satire established itself as a vessel for Holy Fools’ narrative:

“I didn’t actually choose the genre. The genre chose me. My publisher had just gone bankrupt. I was facing rejection, in despair about the future of my literary career. Could things get worse? A little voice answered ‘Of course they could!’ I thought of a guy on the verge of suicide. I wrote quickly from this state of desolation. The result was satire.”

“Ackerman has found an original and highly readable way to show characters fighting against modern malaise — these people may seem crazy, but the world they inhabit is crazier still, and once you’ve signed on for the satirical treatment, the ride is exhilarating.”

Moreover, McGillis describes Ackerman as an author who “establishes the right tone off the bat” and “never loses grip.”

Marianne Ackerman’s upcoming play, Triplex Nervosa, premieres at the Centaur Theatre in 2015, and will run from April 21st to May 17th.


To read the full interview, visit The Montreal Gazette:

Holy Fools + 2 Stories is available for purchase on the Guernica Editions Website:

Posted in Interviews, Reviews.