Swimmers Club

The pioneers of aviation were never lonely

20th June 2017


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Image:Amanda McNeil

Municipal Pool

Check which is the shallow end and note the point where you will be out of your depth.


Who: Amanda McNeil.
Where: Milwaukee, WI , USA
What: CNF writer .

Cat No: DW-362

What do you do?

I write personal essays and watch a LOT of reality tv.

Stock question. Can you tell us a bit about your influences?

I'm influenced by a lot of people. I'm fortunate to know a lot of amazing writers who inspire me on a daily basis. People like Elle Nash, Elizabeth Ellen, Chloe Caldwell, Juliet Escoria. My mom inspires me all the time just with the shit she says, she's one of the funniest people I know. When I was growing up and before I started writing, anytime something fucked up happened in our life my mom would say "This is just something for your book one day." She loved reading funny memoirs, and would tell me they weren't appropriate for me to read, so after she finished them I'd steal the books and read them in my room. I learned from a really young age you could write true stories about the funny/awful/interesting stuff that happened in your life and if you're lucky and work really hard, it could be your job. 

Can you tell us about your most recently published book and whether it does or doesn't differ from the types of things you've written before?

I don't have a published book. THANKS FOR RUBBING IT IN, SWIMMERS CLUB!!!! jk.

What are you currently working on?

I'm currently working on a few essays with the hopes of one day having an essay collection, and also a project I'm calling "Dick Detox". I'm taking a break from dating/flirting/sex for 90 days to focus on learning about myself and learning to feel whole, so I've been journaling and writing through it. I'm thinking there is a book in there, but we'll see! 

What influence, if any, does the city in which you live have on your world?

I'm not sure how much Milwaukee influences me. I think the city I grew up in in Texas, The Woodlands, influences my work a lot. It's a weird planned town about 45 minutes north of Houston with a lot of wealth and privilege. It's the kind of town where kids get BMWs for their 16th birthdays, and boob jobs for prom or graduation. My family was considered "poor" there when we were really just lower middle class. I never realized how much wealth I was surrounded by until I moved up to Milwaukee, which is such a blue collar city. Milwaukee is weird because there's so much tension in the city.

Finally, can you swim?

I can swim! My parents were both scuba divers who loved the water and owned a dive shop before I was born, so it was super important to them that I could swim at an early age and loved the water. They used to say I could swim before I could walk, but I have found NO evidence of this and remember taking swim lessons as a kid, so my parents are just big, fat, braggy liars! If I could swim as a baby why'd I need those lessons, Mom???????

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