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"About the Work" with Wilhelm Sitz

In our "About the Work" series, Natalie Tombasco asks recent contributors for insight into their writing or for current sources of inspiration. Read Wilhelm Sitz's story, "Sans Souci," in SER Vol. 40.1.


"Sans Souci" is what I’m calling a bathhouse fable. I was originally inspired by a Rufus Wainwright song, "Sansoucci," that I stole the title from. Most stories I write are an excuse to wallow in my own sadness. For this one, I wanted to yell at myself, which is partially why I wrote it in the second person. The tense also evokes a fairy tale, to me, even though that’s not really true. Most fairy tales are written in the third person, but when I think about them, I think of them as bloody little morality plays telling you not to get lost in the woods. So, the use of "you" rather than "I" feels appropriate, and hopefully works to make you feel just as annoying and crazed as me and the protagonist. I think (hope) that there are other things going on, but I really just wanted to scream at myself: Stop being stupid! Break up with your boyfriend! But I can never take my own advice.


WILHELM SITZ is a writer from rural Oregon. Now, he lives in Los Angeles with his taxidermied animals. You can read more stories in Sundog Lit, Rejection Letters, and Sycamore Review.


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