Shann Ray Answers Our Questions...

We're so excited to welcome Shann Ray to Unbound 2016. Shann is the author of the wondrous debut novel American Copper, an Indie Next Pick that has garnered acclaim from Esquire, Kirkus Reviews, and the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association.  His collection of short stories, American Masculine, received the American Book Award and the Bakeless Prize. His work has appeared in Poetry, McSweeney's, Montana Quarterly, Narrative, and Northwest Review. He spent part of his childhood on the Northern Cheyenne Reservation in southeast Montana and has served as a visiting scholar in Europe, Asia, and Central America. He now lives in Spokane, Washington, with his wife and three daughters where he teaches leadership and forgiveness studies at Gonzaga University, and fearlessly answers questionnaires from book festivals.


What is your favorite word? 

Jennifer (my wife’s name)


Name one book that you would like everyone in the world to read.

Home by Toni Morrison


If you could visit any literary location, real or imagined, where would it be?

The dinner table with Emily Dickinson


What is your favorite opening line of a novel or poem?

“It was a pleasure to burn.”  -Farenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury


What book did you most enjoy in the last year?

Deepstep Come Shining by C.D. Wright


What’s the strangest question you’ve ever been asked at an author event?

Which dead author would you like to be married to?


Tell us one thing about Missouri that you knew without having to look it up on the Internet.

There is a river named after the state of Missouri.  It’s called the Missouri River, and its headwaters are in Montana, just west of where I grew up, where the Jefferson, Gallatin, and Madison rivers converge to form the Missouri River, which then roils north and east before plunging through America on it’s way to the Gulf of Mexico.