Kelli Trapnell Spotlight

kellitrapnellWhat are you doing currently?
I just left my job as a production associate at The New Yorker to work for Catapult as a production editor. I also write novels and short stories.
What position, if any, did you hold in eleven40seven?
I was Editor in Chief in 2010-2011.
What was your favorite part about being on staff?
I loved working with the staff to create a venue for TCU’s many artists. How can you pick one thing to love best? Long nights of creative brainstorming, editing pieces and typesetting in the library, planning and hosting the release parties–all of it was so much fun. I guess that’s why I’m still in publishing.
What knowledge and skills did you learn from being on staff that help you now?
I learned about how to run a staff and what it takes to make a magazine–how to edit and finalize pieces for print, how to promote the mag, how to talk with a printer and finalize files. So many skill sets began with eleven40seven. The first time I ever read my work in public was for eleven40seven, at the Moon.
What made you want to join, and how did you hear about the magazine?
I was always looking for places to publish, and for friends who wanted to write. I learned about eleven40seven via Bryson Literary Society.
What does “art” mean to you?
Art is what you create. The best thing about art is that it defies simple categorization or definition. It’s a search for truth and how you mine that truth. It’s provocation, it’s commiseration, it’s neither of those things. If it were easy to define art, we would have stopped making it awhile ago.
Are you still creating art?
Yep! I’m a writer. I write literary horror and surreal fiction. I’m currently working on two novels and a collection of short stories.
What was the inspiration behind the art you submitted to the magazine?
I published quite a few things, but I think my favorite piece was called Walking Horses Back–a poem that I wrote after a late fall night out at the polo field. The only light was a floodlight on the barn 50 yards behind us, and the steam coming off the horses’ backs and the way our shadows melded into one giant, spidery thing that stretched out before us–the whole thing was so creepy and beautiful, the main intersection of my aesthetic. I don’t know if it was the best poem, but it was about catching that moment on paper, and I think I did that well enough.