About Jackson | ジャクソンについて
Jackson Kanahashi Bliss is a hapa writer of fiction/creative nonfiction and an interdisciplinary scholar. He's obsessed with tea, dream pop, trains, (Japanese) novels, the perfect tattoo, tight jeans, and video games like a bad Nisei. For the record, his metrosexuality is untouchable. Born and raised in Northern Michigan until early adolescence, Jackson has spent his formative years in Chicago, LA, New York, and the Pacific Northwest, including two years in Argentina, Burkina Faso, and Azerbaijan. Jackson has a BA in comparative literature from Oberlin College and a MFA in fiction from the University of Notre Dame where he was the Fiction Fellow and the 2007 Sparks Prize winner. He also has a MA in English and a PhD in Literature and Creative Writing from the University of Southern California where he worked with Aimee Bender, Viet Thanh Nyugen, and TC Boyle on an interdisciplinary dissertation about mediation, gender performance, and cultural compartmentalization in contemporary Asian American literature in addition to an intersecting coming-of-age novel about love and racial self-discovery called Ninjas of My Greater Self. Jackson was the 1st Runner-up for the Poets & Writer's California Writer's Exchange Award in fiction and a hapa panelist at the Mixed Remixed Festival 2016. His short stories and essays have appeared recently in Guernica, Ploughshares, Tin House, Boston Review, Witness, Joyland, Santa Monica Review, Pleiades, Arts & Letters, Hobart, The Daily Dot, and The Beiging of America Anthology: Personal Narratives about Being Mixed Race in the Twenty-First Century, among many others. He writes essays about APIA literature, video games, and gender constructions for the Ploughshares blog and teaches at the University of California Irvine. He is represented by the badass Maggie Riggs.
10 Random Facts about Jackson
一。 Jackson speaks Japanese like a schoolboy. Not as in giddy either, but as in questionable grammar, cute, unmanly intonations + extremely limited vocabulary
二。Jackson has collaborated on numerous interdisciplinary projects, including The Miracle of the Walking Fish, a bilingual immigrant narrative libretto that composer, Laura Kramer, set to music for the Pasadena Conservatory of Music's "Song About Places" 2015 series, and The Voice Inside Your Bones, an exquisite corpse variant with LA-based artist, Rick Potts, for the 7x7 project.
三。Jackson speaks French + Spanish way better than he speaks Nihongo even though he identifies with his Japanese heritage the most. By the way, if you call Jackson white, he'll kick your ass.
四。Jackson has 4 tattoos + counting: A Japanese poem on his right forearm by Rin Ishigaki, a dolphin + Arabic on his left forearm, a geisha on his left bicep (still a work on progress) + a portrait of Avalokiteshvara on his right shoulder.
五。Unknown to most of his friends, Jackson is also a musician/composer who goes by the name Mizu (the Japanese word for h20). In fact, he's classically trained + has been playing piano since the age of ten. You can buy a track or two of his electronic downtempo LP "Space Age" on iTunes. Or you can listen here first.
六。Some of his favorite cities include: Chicago, Tōkyō, LA, Marrakech, Paris, Amsterdam, Colonia del Sacramento, New York, Kyōto, Buenos Aires, Budapest, Cuzco, Ōsaka, Stockholm, Seattle, Toronto, Barcelona, Sitges, Montréal, Istanbul, Berlin, Hong Kong, Prague, London, Seoul, Bratislava, Copenhagen, + Vienna.
八。Some of his fave foods include: ramen, nectarines, yakisoba, dark chocolate, ocha, vegan reubens, mac'n'cheese, miso shiru, peanut butter shakes, salads with kale + avocados, pad kee mao, poutine, coconut water, brown rice . . .
九。Musically, Jackson will listen to almost everything except country. Special shout outs to: dream pop, indie, electronic, hip-hop, house, classical, jazz, singer songwriter, EDM, trip-hop, industrial, new wave, break beats, dub, lo-fi, downtempo, world music, post-rock, and R + B
十。Some of Jackson's influences include: Zadie Smith, Junot Diaz, Haruki Murakami, The Smiths, Joan Didion, Wong Kar Wai, Aimee Bender, John Coltrane, DJ Krush, Romance マンガ, Wanda Sykes, Life is Strange, Banana Yoshimoto, Beach House, JD Salinger, Arundhati Roy, Deus Ex, Banksy, Insecure, Jeffrey Eugenides, Kendrick Lamar, The Last of Us, Yoshitoki Ōima, TC Boyle, Karen Tei Yamashita, Adrian Tomine, Balmorhea, Sofia Copola's early work, the Final Fantasy series, Jim Shephard, Lydia Davis, Common, Carol Maso, and Proust.