Tiny Talks is an interview series with Tiny Spoon’s talented contributors. This week we spoke with Ali Bryan from Issue 8, Cut/Copy/Paste: The Original! Read her short story, “Sweet Caroline” in our eighth issue and her other stories are posted in our Monday Features!

The Hill by Ali Bryan

Tiny Spoon: What kindles your creativity?

Ali: Exploring the what-ifs, the wtfs and the wait-a-minutes of every day.

Tiny Spoon: Are there any artists/ heroines/ idols/ friends that you look up to?

Ali: Jean Smith, Pamma FitzGerald, Miriam Toews, Meg Wolitzer, Wes Anderson, Shia LaBeouf, Seth Rogen, Mike White, Jennifer Coolidge, ABBA, Missy Elliott…

Tiny Spoon: Are there any natural entities that move your work?

Ali: All of it. I grew up on the Atlantic Ocean and currently live in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. But stars, deer, rabbits, mountains and water figure most prominently in my work.

“Alberta captured under crippling smoke from neighbour BC wildfires”

Tiny Spoon: We love insight into the creative process. Could you share what it is like for you, either with your work that appears in Tiny Spoon or in general?

Ali: My creative process is a blend of intuition and craft and varies from genre to genre, project to project. I love the raw grit of a first draft and the underrated magic of revision. In Sweet Caroline, I enjoyed playing with the juxtaposition of an iconic feel-good song matched with the macabre, messy and often dangerous work of paramedics.

Tiny Spoon: Do you have any current or future projects that you are working on that you would like to share?

Ali: I am currently finishing the edits for my next book of fiction, The Crow Valley Karaoke Championships, which is forthcoming in 2023.

“a crude painting I made last year”

Tiny Spoon: What book, artwork, music, etc., would you recommend to others?

Ali: Lookout: Love, Solitude and Searching for Wildfire in the Boreal Forest is a stunning memoir. Ceramic artist, Pamma FitzGerald’s Left Behind clay installation. Jack Bishop’s paintings, which explore car-culture, consumerism, commercial space and urban sprawl. The Royal Tennanbaums (film), White Lotus (TV). ABBA Gold, NOFX’s Punk in Drublic, the music of David Francey. 

Tiny Spoon: Is there anything else you would like others to know about you, your creations, or beyond?

Ali: I was a certified Personal Trainer and worked in marketing and communications before turning to writing full time. I am currently serving as the Edna Staebler Writer-in-Residence at Wilfrid Laurier University.

“sketch of Gary Drayton (sketching the cast of The Curse of Oak Island)

Tiny Spoon: Where can people learn more about what you do?

Ali: My website, on Instagram and Twitter.