The Chills at Will Podcast podcast

Episode 165 with Anna Hogeland, Reflective Psychotherapist and Writer of the Unique, Bold, Moving The Long Answer

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Episode 165 Notes and Links to Anna Hogeland’s Work


    On Episode 165 of The Chills at Will Podcast, Pete welcomes Anna Hogeland, and the two discuss, among other things, her early reading and writing, the formative writers, writing, and UC Irvine MFA program that set her on her own writing path, her embrace of Marvel movies as cathartic, her rationale in structuring her book like she did, and the myriad themes and real-life connections that come from the great losses experienced by mothers and loved ones in her profound book.


   Anna Hogeland is a psychotherapist in private practice, with an MSW from Smith College School of Social Work and an MFA from UC Irvine. She lives in Vermont.



Buy The Long Answer


Anna Hogeland's Website


LitHub Article: "After Two Pregnancy Losses, I Wrote the Book I Needed to Read”


Brenda Shaughnessy Reviews The Long Answer for The New York Times

At about 6:30, Anna shouts out contact info and places (like The Bennington Book Shop) to buy her book The Long Answer


At about 7:15, Anna discusses her “interrupted path” to becoming a writer and her early relationships with reading and writing


At about 9:45, The two talk about David Foster Wallace Infinite Jest and the hubbub around it


At about 10:35, Anna discusses her path to the MFA and reading that inspired and thrilled her, as well as her positive experiences with a loving workshop partner and workshops in general 


At about 14:25, Anna gives background on her time applying to and being accepted at UC Irvine’s 


At about 15:40, Anna lists some formative writers and current favorites, including Elena Ferrante and Thomas Bernhard


At about 18:20, Pete bringing up Anna’s skill with writing using various tones and POVs leads to Anna explaining her philosophy of writing versatility 


At about 20:20, Anna responds to Pete’s question about her writing informs her work as a psychotherapist, and vice versa


At about 25:40, Anna gives background on seeds for the book, as well as her initial visions for the book’s structure


At about 29:10, the two focus on Elizabeth’s chapter to start the book and the icy relationship between the narrator and her sister Margot


At about 31:30, Pete asks about how grief and traumas and resulting relationships are connected in the book and in real life, and Anna speaks to ideas of resentment and wrongs 


At about 36:10, The two discuss a memorable and clever scene that ends Part I revolving around mother/son bonds


At about 39:30, Pete and Anna recount Part II and Corrie’s page-turning and action-packed and salacious stories


At about 43:35, The short chapter is discussed with regards to its diction and angry tone 


At about 46:35, The two discuss our collective inability to grieve and the awkwardness and silence that often is part of this process


At about 49:20, The juxtaposition between Ruth and Anna’s pregnancy losses are discussed, including the moving writing that focuses on the banal 


At about 52:00, Anna focuses on the silences that often accompany pregnancy loss and how common these losses are


At about 53:10, Anna and Pete discuss Marvel-Anna finds them “so moving”


At about 55:10, The two discuss Marisol’s chapter in which Anna has taken a weekend away on an important anniversary 


At about 57:15, Anna responds to Pete’s questions about Marisol’s mindset and reasons behind an infatuation with her bosses


At about 58:30, Anna lays out ideas of manipulation and vulnerability that characterize the relationship between Marisol and Ellen


At about 1:01:15, Pete highlights a moving scene between Anna and Marisol 


At about 1:02:05, Pete recaps (without spoilers) the fitting last chapter and 


At about 1:03:25, Anna responds to Pete’s question about meaningful feedback she’s received about the book


At about 1:05:50, Anna talks about future projects

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   Please tune in for Episode 166 with Kai Harris. who is a writer and educator from Detroit, Michigan. She uses her voice to uplift the Black community through realistic fiction centered on the Black experience, and she is the author of What The Fireflies Knew, the first fiction title from Tiny Reparations Book. She is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Santa Clara University (GO BRONCOS!)

   The episode will air on February 14.

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