We’re pleased to welcome Katrina Gray, who is taking over the weekly Check-In with Groups column from Nicolle Elizabeth.

Q (Katrina Gray): Erin Zulkoski. I like your name. I Googled you, and the real you came up right away. There was no, “Do you mean Erin Zulkoski the serial killer or Erin Zulkoski the writer?” Anyway, you are the administrator of a group here at Fictionaut called “The Fictionaughties.” What makes your group members so naughty?

A (Erin Zulkoski): Wait…you “googled” me? We just met, and where I come from, it’s polite to ask a girl before you go and google her. But yes, I am the one and–thankfully–only Erin Zulkoski. I am disappointed “Erin Zulkoski, space explorer” didn’t come up in the search, though. I was told my space explorer license was coming in the mail…anyway, I digress. You are correct; I am the head cheese of The Fictionaughties. What makes us so naughty? Well, aside from the rag-tag group of miscreants we are, we aren’t your “average” writers, per se. We are eclectic, diverse, sassy, and some of us have been known to throw in some toilet humor into the mix. I’m not naming names. Except one: Thomas Pluck. He’s a sucker for fart jokes.

I think that Thomas Pluck and I would get along just fine. Now: A moderately famous writer once told me, quite earnestly and with no perceivable irony, “Every writer has his own journey.” Can you tell me about yours?

My Journey, which speaking of irony, would be a killer name for a Journey cover band. What were we talking about? Ah yes, my journey. I would be remiss to mention this journey would not have been possible without fellow F’naut-ers, Lynn Beighley and Mary Capps. Here’s how it went down: it was a day much like any other, but this day had something special in the air. Lynn, Mary, and I were conversing, as we are often wont to do, and in some round-a-bout way, we all three decided to write a story based on the topic of “horny.” Each of us wrote a piece of flash fiction, and it was from that point on, we decided that we should come up with a topic and each of us would write about it, with our own flavor. I threw the idea of making this a group on Fictionaut on the table, keeping the theme that each member could suggest a topic for each of us to write about, and with much fanfare and revelry, The Fictionaughties was born. And I’m going to be completely honest here–I just thought the name “Fictionaughties” was hilarious. So, there you go.

Look, I’ve gotta be up front here. I heard a rumor. Someone said you and some other Fictionauts started this thing called HeartOnSleeve Review. True? Give us the lowdown. And name names.

My, my, my…aren’t you a precocious one? The rumor is LIES!! ALL LIES!! I never had sexual relations with that–uh…sorry. Channeling ex-presidents again. Last week it was Teddy Roosevelt, and I had this weird compulsion to hunt bears. Anyway, no, you are correct. The rumor is being confirmed as science fact right here. HeartOnSleeve Review is in the birthing stages, and hopefully will be up and running shortly. It started with the notion of wanting to write damn fine work with some damn fine ladies, who, in no particular order are: Jules Archer, Harley May, Mary Capps, Lynn Beighley, Marda Miller, and Jamie Sughroue. Our goal, aside from world domination….oops. Don’t think I was supposed to share that with you….anyway, our goal is to write whatever our hearts desire. And right now, the basic premise is to have this be a “for women only” site, meaning it’s just us ladies writing. Eventually, we will throw some testosterone into the mix, and allow some of our favorite male writers to post as well. But only if they promise to put the toilet seat down. And if I may be serious for a moment, I am so incredibly honored that these women agreed to go into this venture with me. Each of them are beautiful, intelligent, and amazing writers, so to have them be a part of this is wonderful, and I’m beyond thrilled we’re doing this together.

You can check the site out at www.heartonsleevereview.wordpress.com.

I see yours is a protected group. Let me first say, I’m *glad* you’re using protection. But if a gal wanted to penetrate the membership sheath, what might she need to do?

Yes, we do use protection in The Fictionaughties. Aside from learning the secret Fictionaughties handshake, performing extensive background searches, and a full physical declaring you fit to submit, all you really have to do to “penetrate the sheath” is ask an existing member to join. But knowing the secret handshake and offering us a bribe for admittance is a bonus.

Katrina Gray lives in Nashville with the writer John Minichillo and their lovechild. She is the editor-in-chief of Atticus Review, and she blogs about mostly non-literary things at www.katrinagray.com.

  1. Marcus Speh

    welcome katrina and good-bye nicolle, who will be missed! enjoyed this naughty interview & looking forward for more. i’ll be back when i need some cheering up and i can never resist anyone talking about sexual relations with you know who. not naming names either.

  2. James Lloyd Davis

    The word ‘naughty’ feels somehow Victorian. I joined the group, but have yet to offer anything. I just loved the hell out of the logo … same background color as the old CIA logo, not that it’s relevant. Just an odd coincidence. Nonetheless, every time I see the Fictionaughties logo I want to wear dark sunglasses and fly to Prague.

    Funny interview. Erin has a marvelous sense of humor and I have also seen that when she gets down to writing something of a serious nature, her prose is anything but prosaic.

  3. Erin Zulkoski

    Katrina, you were a blast and pleasure to interview with, and again, I thank you for letting me pimp The Fictionaughties AND HeartOnSleeve Review.

  4. Katrina Gray

    Nicolle Elizabeth left some mighty big shoes to fill, so I appreciate the kind comments. I am having a great blast with this new adventure.

    Erin, you were a complete riot, and you know that a gal never forgets her first!

    James: oh, my, yes…Victorian. Which makes if feel even naughtier.

    Marcus, thank you over and over, always, for your support in all my naughty adventures!

  5. susan tepper

    Great interview with Erin the dominatrix of the Naughties..

  6. Tommy Salami

    Erin is full of beans.

  7. Harley

    I love Erin like her dog likes to loves licking his own butt.

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