Jack Ohliger

Fiction | University of Akron | Class of 2023

Saoirse (that’s Sur-shuh not Sow-Ears!) Hamasaki never wanted to leave the beach, the San Diego sun, or the long days out on her kayak fishing with her dad. But when her parents split without warning, Saoirse’s mother announces a sudden move to Achill, Ireland, to the middle of the middle of nowhere, to a soggy, foggy gray island trapped on the wrong West Coast. It’s not long before Saoirse meets her first Irish kook, gnarly and stone-faced Mrs. Kent, the school history teacher, a wolfish woman with a mad-fang grin and a chilling warning: there are faeries beyond the fog and an evil spirit within, a wailing banshee ghost, clawing to take Saoirse and her mother through the veil, down into the dark, away from hope and all her sunny horizons.


About Jack

Jack Ohliger has been a Clevelander all his life. Raised in a family of quacks both stubborn and proud, he was taught to stick with it regardless of failures and came back to test his writing in the NEOMFA program. A one-time graduate of John Carroll University, he decided to pursue his MFA after being terrified by the first two pages of The Name of the Wind. He enjoys chess but is terrible at it. He loves long baseball games at the Jake and The Batman. He has a dream of one day living in New York City.

What’s on your nightstand right now?

A Nintendo DS, sunglasses in a case, a lamp, some rubber wristbands, a second wallet, coins, hair ties, bits of my hair, and an unread Bible.

Your favorite place to write while in the NEOMFA?

From my desk in Ohio City, watching the snow and the wind whip the power cables outside the window.

Your advice to an incoming MFA student?

Ask your instructors for book recommendations based on what you’d like to write someday. Do the extra reading outside of class. When it comes to writing… stick with it!!!

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