Episode 156: Irony and Satire — Interview with Courtney Maum

by Gabriela Pereira
published in Podcast

Hey there word nerds!

Today I am so excited to have Courtney Maum on the show!

Courtney is the author of the novel I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You, and pieces of short fiction and essays that have appeared in places such as New York Times. Her latest novel, Touch, is the satirical story of Sloane Jacobson, a trend forecaster who sees a move against electronics and toward in-person interaction ahead.

Listen in as we discuss the strange yet believable world of Touch, and how limiting our electronic usage can be beneficial to our creativity.

In this episode Courtney and I discuss:

  • Why a huge emphasis on electronics is damaging to your writer’s intuition and creativity.
  • How to craft a “blind spot” for a character who’s job it is to know everything, thus giving readers a reason to read on.
  • How to best research and craft a story of speculative fiction.
  • Why it is important to find friends outside the writing community.
  • How learning to write copy can aid you in other writing endeavors.

Plus, Courtney’s #1 tip for writers.

About Courtney Maum

Courtney Maum is the author of the novel I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You and the chapbook “Notes from Mexico.” Her short fiction, book reviews, and essays on the writing life have been widely published in outlets such as The New York Times, Tin House, Electric Literature, and Buzzfeed, and she has co-written films that have debuted at Sundance and won awards at Cannes.

At various points in her life, she has been a trend forecaster, a fashion publicist, and a party promoter for Corona Extra. She currently works as a product namer for M·A·C cosmetics from her home in Litchfield County, CT. To connect more with Courtney check out her website at https://www.courtneymaum.com/


Touch, is a timely and satirical but also moving story about a leading trend forecaster who suddenly finds herself in the position of wanting to overturn her own predictions.

Sloane Jacobsen is one of the world’s most powerful trend forecasters (she was the foreseer of “the swipe”), and global fashion, lifestyle, and tech companies pay to hear her opinions about the future.

Not far into her contract with tech giant Mammoth, Sloane begins to sense the undeniable signs of a movement against electronics that will see people embracing compassion, empathy, and “in-personism” again. Despite the risks to her professional reputation, Sloane is nevertheless convinced that her instincts are the right ones, and goes on a quest to defend real life human interaction, while finally allowing in the love and connectedness she’s long been denying herself.

If you decide to check out the book, we hope you’ll do so via this Amazon affiliate link, where if you choose to purchase DIY MFA makes a small commission at no cost to you. As always, thank you for supporting DIY MFA!

Link to Episode 156

(Right-click to download.)

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Until next week, keep writing and keep being awesome!

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