Episode 34: Mistakes Were Made

Present at the Editorial Table

Kathleen Volk Miller

Tim Fitts

Sharee DeVose

Jason Schneiderman


Engineering Producer

Joseph Zang


Due to a miscommunication, we discussed Matthew Perini’s short story, “Martha’s Rule,” without knowing that it had been published by Summerset Review.  We had such a great time discussing this piece, and we think the conversation still has value. With the permission of the author and the Review, we share that conversation with you on this episode.

Matthew Perini

Matthew Perini is thrilled to have his story, “Martha’s Rule” featured in PBQ‘s Slush Pile. Perini feels guilty that he writes slowly, but is confident that given a grant of several million dollars and a retreat along the rocky coast of Southern Maine, he might be able to increase his literary output. The five things Perini loves most in this world are farmer’s markets, Raymond Carver stories, Lorrie Moore stories, John Cheever stories, and going to friends’ houses and drinking all their wine. In his “responsible adult life,” he conducts research, develops instructional strategies, and publishes resources for educators. Perini lives in New Jersey with his wife Kristen, daughters Ella and Alison, 2 dogs, 1 cat, and the overwhelming sense that technology is going to get us all.

You can read more of Perini’s stories in Crack the Spine Literary Magazine and The Tower Journal.

“Martha’s Rule” tells the story of an incredibly strained mother-son relationship that leads to questions about morality, good and bad parenting, and the challenges of early adulthood. Everyone at the editorial table agrees that Perini uses a voice that sustains the entire story and engages the reader all the way through with visceral detail and a depiction that rings true. We also take some time to discuss the significance of time and place in the telling of fiction – whether or not the lack thereof can create a void that needs unvoiding; you can help us decide.

Enjoy, and let us know what you think about this week’s episode on our Facebook event page and on Twitter with #HoldTheKetchup!

Happy reading!


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