Doug Van Hooser

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Oyster River Pages: Who are the writers who have made you who you are? 
Doug Van Hooser: Too many so here’s a sample: Theodore Roethke, James Dickey, Linda Pastan, Mark Strand, Tony Hoagland, Charles Rafferty, Ingmar Bergman, Mon Van Duyn, Joseph Heller, Kurt Vonnegut, Laurence Lieberman, Ruth Stone, and playwrights and composers by the score.

ORP: What are the lenses that shape your worldview? 
DVH: I’m far sighted in one eye and near sighted in the other so I’ve always needed correction. That’s probably why I got married and stayed married.

ORP: What’s the most important thing you’ve read/seen lately? 
DVH: Today’s paper. Which seems to be the case every day.

ORP: What’s your least favorite word?
DVH: Later.

ORP: What’s your favorite thing that you’ve created? (line, image, story, etc.) 
DVH: It always seems to be the last thing I’ve written.

ORP: What do you want to read/see more of in the world? 
DVH:  Tolerance and humility.

ORP: How do you pay it forward? 
DVH: Poorly. But I do give credit where credit is deserved.

ORP: What is the space that has shaped you the most? 
DVH: A fallow cornfield gone to thistles, goldfinches, tiger swallowtails, and viceroys imitating monarchs.

ORP: You’ve just written your autobiography. What’s the title?
DVH: Too Many Knots


Doug Van Hooser’s poetry has appeared in Poetry Quarterly, Chariton Review, Sheepshead Review, Gravel, and Black Fox Literary Magazine. His short fiction can be found in Red Earth Review, Intrinsick, Crack the Spine, and The Riding Light Review. Doug is a Chicago playwright active at Chicago Dramatists Theatre and Three Cat Productions. Find his poetry here.

Abby Michelini