Grove Koger

Grove Koger is the author of  When the Going Was Good: The 99 Best Narratives of Travel, Exploration and Adventure (Scarecrow Press, 2002); and Not, a chapbook of poetry (Finishing Line Press, forthcoming).

He’s also Assistant Editor of Deus Loci: The Lawrence Durrell Journal, and has published nonfiction in a number of Boise-area and Idaho publications, including the Idaho Statesman, Boise Weekly, and Idaho Magazine.

He’s also published fiction, poetry and nonfiction in The Limberlost Review, several of The Cabin’s Writers in the Attic anthologies, and a host of literary journals, including, most recently, Amsterdam Quarterly and Ode to Dionysus. He’s also looking for a publisher for a short collection of experimental stories.

Do you have a writing routine? Where and when do you write?

I write every week for my blog at Beyond that, I work intermittently on short stories, essays, and poetry when I’m inspired. 

What do you do when you hit a wall with your writing?

I turn my chair toward another wall.

Do you plan your book in advance (plotting and outlining) or are you a “discovery writer” (AKA “writing into the dark”)? Or are you somewhere in between?

I really need to have a sense of where I’m going when I’m writing fiction. I don’t want to know everything, but I’ve learned that if I don’t an idea of how my story’s going to develop, I’m wasting my time.

Nonfiction is a different matter, since I can always find my way once I’ve started. 

What is the last book you read that made you go “wow!”?

The Separation by the late Christopher Priest.

What book or author do you find yourself recommending and why?

I routinely recommend The Alexandria Quartet by Lawrence Durrell.

What’s on your To Be Read pile?

A biography of Mountain Home-born writer Richard McKenna by Dennis L. Noble, and Spies: The Epic Intelligence War Between East and West by Calder Walton.

What advice do you have for readers?

Keep reading. Read something different, something really different.

What author, past or present, would you wish to have a long conversation with? Why?

I wish I’d had the chance to talk to Lawrence Durrell, but I can’t imagine what I might have said he would have found interesting.

Do you have early memories of reading or writing you’d like to share?

I’ve been reading for as long as I can remember, and I was encouraged by my mother, who bought me a collection of stories by Edgar Allan Poe when I was really young. I’ve been writing for almost as long, although it took me decades to write anything worthwhile.

What books and/or authors have most influenced you as an author?

The Alexandria Quartet, by Lawrence Durrell, and A Hero of Our Time by Mikhail Lermontov. At one time or another, I’ve also been influenced by Norman Douglas and John O’Hara.

What do you most enjoy about being a writer? What do you least enjoy about being a writer?

Writing allows me to revisit places I’ve been, and to visit other places I’ll never be.

What would you tell a new writer?


Find Grove Koger online