About the Artist
Angela Jane Fountas writes and teaches in Seattle, WA. She was a 2008-2009 writer-in-residence at Richard Hugo House and a 2006 Jack Straw Writer. Her work has appeared in Fairy Tale Review, Quick Fiction, Diagram, Sentence, Redivider, Syntax, and elsewhere. She has a collection of short stories making the rounds and is currently working on a collection of linked stories. Angela’s work has been supported by grants from the Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs and 4Culture. She earned her MFA in creative writing from the University of Alabama, and she runs two websites in support of writers, WriteHabit.org and Quoterly.net.
As part of her Fellowship’s Meet the Artist requirements, 12 residents of Heritage House in Seattle attended Angela’s Holiday Story Circle, at which she read two short pieces, “A Tree to Keep Me Company” and “A New Year,” from her manuscript Skoura, Sparti, Lakonia, Greece. Then she visited the residents to share their own holiday stories. She later served pie and all resumed their story telling. Fountas recounts this encounter:
One of the participants, a man named Leslie, has a hard time speaking, but nonetheless managed to add a few words here and there and the participants and myself helped to round out his stories. At one point, he said something that we interpreted as “water skiing.” “No,” he said, and repeated the phrase. We continued to guess to no avail, and then one of the participants asked if he could write it down. But he only managed a couple of scribbles. We moved on to more stories, and soon enough, Leslie repeated the phrase again, and we once again started to guess. One person said it was like playing charades, and somebody asked if he could draw what he was saying, like in Pictionary. Leslie took up the pen again and we soon shouted, “Roller skating!” It was such a thrill to finally understand what he was saying and to see Leslie beaming with happiness.
Information included above was provided by artist at the time of application.