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Will Marquess: Engaging and Challenging Writing Professor

This semester I have the privilege of studying under Professor Will Marquess in his fiction writing workshop. It’s become my favorite class (I’m not just saying that, I promise) so I’m very excited that Her Campus got to know him a little better this week. If you haven’t taken a class with him I highly recommend it. His courses are engaging and challenging (in the best way) and provide you with perspectives with which to see the world that you differently.  With all that, here’s a little bit about Will:

Her Campus: Hometown?  

Will Marquess: Burlington, for thirty years.  Born in Atlanta, grew up in Cincinnati.


HC: Which classes do you teach at Saint Mike’s?  

WM: First-Year Seminar (Tries: Creative Writing), Fiction Writing, Fairy Tales.


HC: How many years have you been a professor?  

WM: Thirty.


HC: Favorite class you ever took throughout post-high school education?  

WM: Modern French Literature, while studying abroad in Paris.  The professor was passionate, friendly, and funny.  He has been gone for years, but I still see and hear him vividly.


HC: What was the last song you listened to?  

WM: “Ottobre,” by the Italian singer Carmen Consoli.  Look her up.


HC: What are some authors/pieces of writing that influenced pivotal moments in your life?  

WM: “Charlotte’s Web,” which Miss Bain read to us in second grade:  I fell under the spell of stories.  “When I Have Fears,” a sonnet by Keats that I memorized in high school.  When I was called on to read it aloud in class, it seemed like fate.  I later wrote a book about Keats.


HC: Favorite job you worked during adolescence?

WM: I worked in a t-shirt factory every summer.  It exposed me to what work is–daily, hard, but honest.


HC: If you were in charge of the show-list for a major TV channel for a day, what shows/movies would you air?  

WM: I’d be terrible at this.  I never got cable, and my eyes are so bad that I don’t see the screen well, anyway.  I might just run a marathon of “The Simpsons.”


HC: What is something you think people would find surprising about you?

WM: I was captain of my high school baseball team, and a damn good shortstop.


HC: Favorite type of pizza?  

WM: Artichoke hearts, spinach, and garlic.


HC: Do you have a favorite character that you’ve created and written about?

WM: A young woman named Alex in a story called “Alex in Dodoland.”  She’s on an archeological dig on an island off the coast of Africa where the dodo went extinct.  To make some money on the side, she works at an Alice in Wonderland theme park, where she wears a dodo costume every day.  She has terrible battles with Humpty Dumpty.  I just feel for her.  That dodo costume must get hot.


HC: What question do you most dislike being asked?  

WM: This one.  No, seriously, I guess I’d say any question that seems too reverential.  I’m just scuffling along like everyone else, hoping to make it to tomorrow.

HC: Thanks, Will, see you in class.


Image sourced from http://www.smcvt.edu/pages/get-to-know-us/faculty/marquess-william.aspx


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