Celine Aubert’s two microfiction stories, “Expatriates”, and “Morning Cup”, will appear in the fifth issue of The Centifictionist (Vol. 3, Issue 1, Spring/Summer 2022). Celine graciously answered a few brief questions for us. Read the interview below.
1. What inspired the stories “Expatriates” and “Morning Cup”?
“Expatriates” came from feeling a lot of helpless rage at the human cost behind conflicts around the world, especially knowing that the people responsible for those costs will likely never account or pay for what they’ve done to the degree they should. “Morning Cup” was directly influenced by my own bumpy learning curve as a first-time mom. Despite the fact I love our son more than anything, it was important to me to also capture struggling on exhausted mornings to come to terms with the huge life change that parenting involves.
2. What inspires you and your writing?
My writing comes from my own little efforts to better understand myself, as well as the world and people around me, and to connect with others through shared experiences. Whether or not I pull it off every story, the attempt at least helps keep me sane.
3. What keeps you going when experiencing times of misery and despair?
Aside from writing, what helps keep me going is reminding myself that me and my problems are nothing new, really, and that I’m a pretty insignificant and impermanent speck in the grand scheme. No matter how overwhelming things can feel, that reminder helps me put things in perspective again and eventually pull myself back up onto my feet when I stumble.
4. What advice do you have for microfiction writers?
While I’m still fairly new to microfiction myself, I’ll share what I learned recently: never think of a new story idea in just one format. I was first convinced that “Expatriates” was a novel-length concept and that I only come up with novel-length concepts, but I couldn’t quite feel out the details. I tried it instead as microfiction on a whim, and found it fit perfectly. Now, I have several other previously stalled novel ideas that I’m repurposing as short and micro stories. Ideas benefit from not being restricted by any assumed format right out of the gate.
5. Is there anything else that you would like people to know about you and/or your writing?
I just hope that someone somewhere will at some point read something I’ve put out there and have it move them in whatever way. Even if it’s just for a second, little connections like that help us feel less alone, less unsure in what can be a pretty lonely and freaky world. Being able to do that for even one person would be all the satisfaction I need.
Celine Aubert (pseudonym) is a writer/editor of technical manuals, and a freelance writer/proofreader. She received her BA in English and Professional Writing from York University, and lives in northern Canada with her husband, infant son, and spoiled dog. This is her first publication. More details about her current and forthcoming work can be found at celineaubertauthor.com. You can also follow her on Twitter, @CelineAubert4.