Edward Jackson

Fiction | Youngstown State University | Class of 2022

Edward Jackson’s Reel Around the Fountain, is a novel that explores the life of a teen boy in the 1980s whose working class family is left struggling to adapt after his father is diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. We watch as family members take on different roles to keep the family going, and how eventually the teen boy, climbing the ranks at his Catholic School, is taken advantage of by a priest, which sends the family, and him, spinning even further out onto the margins of their small town in Western Michigan.  —Chris Barzak


About Edward

Edward Jackson is a graduate of Western Michigan University, University of Georgia, and Youngstown State University. This fall he will enter a PhD program at the University of Pittsburgh. Prior to enrolling in the NEOMFA he was a public school teacher and librarian. Portions of his thesis will appear in The Louisville Review, The Pennsylvania Literary Journal, and Calliope this summer. He lives with his husband and a menagerie of pets they have named after Mad Men characters. He has published short fiction in Salmon Creek Journal, The SissyFuss, Ethel, Coffin Bell, and DM du Jour. In addition, he has published essays in The Gay & Lesbian Review, The Adirondack Review, Entrophy, Dr. Brickmore’s YA Wednesday, and The Atlanta Journal Constitution. He is a pool reviewer for School Library Journal reviewing YA LGTBQ books. 

Your advice to an incoming MFA student?

Be a better reader. This program is equal parts reading and writing. Read in voracious amounts out of your norm. Look at the line level craft. Treat your fellow students as professionals with careful attention to their writing in workshops. Never dismiss writing just because you don’t normally read that "type of stuff." 

What’s on your nightstand right now?

A lamp, reading glasses, a terrible magazine, remote controls, Vicks Vapor Rub, Medicated Chapstick. Books that agents I’m querying have represented, books from small independent presses I’m wanting to submit to, and advanced copies of novels I’m reviewing. Right now this includes: Vintage by Steve Berman, The Dove in the Belly by Jim Grimsley, and All That’s Left in the World by Erik J. Brown. 

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