EP81circleConversations with Orson
Colleen O’Connor


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“Desire is an acquisition,” Colleen O’Connor writes in her unsettling series, Conversations with Orson. And much of desire is dark and escapable, the original noir of noir. The narrator is and isn’t O’Connor. Just as Orson is and isn’t Welles. We imagine them on Corsica thanks to a time machine, her vivid imagination, and a kind of bad cinematic hangover. The hair of the dog is the deconstruction of the male gaze. The result is a series entirely original, hard to place, and in that way, Wellesian.
 
AN EXCERPT FROM EP 86
 
“I want to be Orson’s body double. I want his body to surround my body, to encase me. I want to desire Orson from within him, from that fleshy darkness. I want to watch my own movement through Orson’s eyes, I want my hands to touch Orson with Orson’s hands.” 
 
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
 
COLLEEN O’CONNOR received her MFA in Nonfiction from Columbia College Chicago. She is the author of the chapbook The Pretty Thing to Do (Dancing Girl Press, 2016) and her work has appeared in journals like Columbia Poetry Review, Glittermob, Another Chicago Magazine, and PANK. She lives in Chicago, where she is the Managing Editor of the feminist poetry press Switchback Books.


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Essay Press is pleased to announce the two winners of the 2016 Essay Press Open Book Contest judged by Carla Harryman: Litany for the Long Moment by Mary-Kim Arnold and Of Sphere by Karla Kelsey, which will be published in Fall 2017.