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Brenna Kleiman: Emerson’s Latest Author

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Emerson chapter.

Brenna Kleiman is Undergraduate Students for Publishing and Wilde Press’ latest author. In her debut poetry collection Hypergraphia, to be released on December 9, 2014, Kleiman touches upon themes of heartbreak, disorientation, the bittersweet feeling of existence, and mythology. 

Name: Brenna Kleiman

Age: 21

Hometown: Fairfax, Virginia 

Year: 2015 December Graduate 

Major: Writing, Literature and Publishing BFA with emphasis in Poetry 


What’s your dream pet?

 A black French Bulldog name Daria. 

What are your hobbies besides writing?

I listen to music a lot and I go to a lot of shows. I’m also really into internet culture. 

What is your guilty pleasure movie and television show?

 I love Gordon Ramsay television shows, anything with Gordon Ramsey in it. I love watching Clueless, it’s one of the best movies ever made. I’ll stand by that forever.

Did you originally come to Emerson as a WLP major?

I originally came to Emerson for the marketing program and I found it wasn’t for me very quickly. I switched second semester of freshman year to WLP.

How did you start writing, and what was the first poem you wrote?

The first poem I showed people was this one I wrote in third grade. My school had a poetry contest every year, and in third grade I won the contest for this poem I wrote about being a chameleon. I kept writing throughout middle school and high school.

Then when I got to college I started doing slam poetry and open mice in the area. End of sophomore year of college at Emerson I dropped out of that and started doing more page stuff. Looking at my work as something that could be a book, that could be consumed more than once.

What was the first poem you wrote for the manuscript Hypergraphia?

I honestly don’t know. It’s hard to say just because all these poems have been through such varying amounts of revision. So, some bits and pieces have cannibalized from other poems and brought into new ones. I don’t really think of my poems in a chronology. I don’t really write chronologically. I feel like times in my poems is much less important than people seem to think.

How did you go about writing and picking the title poem for this manuscript?

I wrote it over the course of three weeks maybe, it was a pretty short amount of time. I haven’t really edited it a whole lot since I wrote it at the beginning of sophomore year of college. It’s one of those poems that came together very organically, which is odd since it is such a fractured piece.

As for picking it for the title poem, it’s the longest poem in the book and it references a lot of other themes and images that show up in the book. I wouldn’t say it’s a good launching point, but it’s a good hub for the rest of the manuscript.

What do you see yourself doing in the future?

I want to teach eventually, that’s the long term goal. I want to be a professor and work in social critique and literary critique, to look at language theory and at how the world is changing in relation to art and language. Short term I have no idea. I’m going to keep making stuff and writing. That’s kind of where I am with that. I’ve been doing a lot of performance art lately, that I’m actually probably going to be producing on video soon.

Where do you want to live in the future?

I’m considering moving to Seattle. I really like it there and I have family there. It feels very much like Boston, just a west coast version. They have a great art scene there. 

What is your favorite experience you’ve had at Emerson?

Probably, to be honest, it’s been two of the classes I’m taking this semester. I’m taking a class called Cultural Translations with Maria Koundoura and I’m taking Living Art and Real Space with Sunil Swaroop. Both of those classes have pretty much revolutionized how I view art, what I do and how I relate to the art of other people. The combination of the two have been mind-blowing, and I’m incredibly grateful to have people like that at Emerson. 

Lindsey Paradis has loved Boston all her life, and coming from a small Western Mass town she’s had time to enjoy it. Now at Emerson as a Writing, Literature, and Publishing major, she has more than enough time to take in the beautiful city. When she’s not working with preschoolers, Lindsey finds herself writing stories, hanging out with friends, reading her way through Game of Thrones, and watching Sex & the City.
Emerson contributor