When I was a child, I read more than I read now, and when I did I'd step outside for a while, go somewhere else. I find it difficult to lose myself that way as an adult, but I can when I am writing. When I'm in that groove my best shorts happen. It doesn't happen that way when I write traditional short stories; those, I stop and start, go back to, edit, and live inside them for weeks at a time. Writing is a release. Some people run, some paint, some organize their closets, some meditate. I write.

Like many artists, I work with what haunts me. Certain images and ideas that have preoccupied me throughout much of my life appear again and again. I kept secrets as a child, and the isolation that created is present in much of what I write. I don't believe I'm a better writer because of my personal experiences, but I write because of them. I've learned to listen to my instincts. I've learned to write about what frightens me.

-taken from "An Interview With Claudia Smith" by Liesl Jobson @ Eclectica, 2007

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