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Let Trans Fiction Be Messy: An Interview With Imogen Binnie

I think I’ve waited my whole trans career to talk to Imogen Binnie, who wrote Nevada, a seminal novel originally published in 2013 about being a trans woman. It’s unapologetic, messy, funny, heartbreaking, frustrating — and when it’s over, you want to talk about it with everyone. Nevada has been out of print for a number of years, and a lot of us who have read it have done so on the graces of an older trans somewhere, passing us a copy and telling us to read it. This is how it happened for me.

When it was announced Nevada would be getting a reissue in 2022, my mind immediately raced to the possibility I might get to chat with Binnie, who wrote the book that helped me feel seen as a trans woman when nothing else did, if I played my cards right.

Nevada is out now, and I cannot recommend enough that you read it. And make notes in the margin, share those with a friend, or some newly realized trans woman in your life. It might change their life.

It changed mine.

Note: This interview has been edited for clarity and length.

Imogen Binnie: Hey, what’s happening? How’s it going?

Niko Stratis: It’s going well, how are you?

Imogen: I mean, I’m exhausted. My partner’s been at a birth for three days, and I’ve been minding children. Yeah, it’s been wild. My partner’s job takes a lot of her time. And I work as a therapist at the community mental health organization where we live, and my job takes a lot of time, and our children take a lot of time and yeah, it’s a struggle just to find time to do shit, you know what I mean? And I am currently developing a couple of things for screenwriting stuff that I probably can’t talk specifics about except to say, I have been really feeling like the asshole on this project for not being more on top of them when I’ve got book stuff coming out. There’s been a lot of publicity for it over the last month. So how am I doing? Just kind of tired. Very busy, very tired. Don’t know how to relax, it’s not my thing, which is hard. But super grateful for all of it. It all feels very unlikely, but I feel just so grateful for it. You know, as somebody who’s been really broke for a lot of my life, it’s been lovely to have people do the work that you care about, and we’ll give you money for it. You know what I mean? That’s a big deal.

Niko: It’s incredible. I have a vanity license plate for your book that I got in the mail the other day!

Imogen: I feel self-conscious about it. You know, I’m not from a world where we do promo around the stuff that I do. I’m from a world where I print up 20 copies of the zine, and I tried to sell all of them, you know what I mean? So having a publicity person at FSG is rad. I feel a little skeptical about all of it. But also, it’s because I don’t know how to relax, right? And be like ‘this is nice.’ How do I just accept that a nice thing is happening? So yeah, it’s wild. And I am so grateful for it. And also, I don’t know how to do an interview properly. I just kind of ramble, and yeah, it’s an acclimation process to this world of people wanting to do interviews and make license plates about Nevada and stuff.

Niko: I don’t know how to do an interview either. And I’m the one interviewing, so this is a perfect pairing.

Imogen: What should I talk about? Tell me stuff.

Niko: I’m always self-conscious about questions because — I don’t know if you have this as a person that creates things — but I think that everything I make is probably really bad. And then eventually, someone’s going to discover that I’m a fraud, halfway through the question, and you’re gonna get so mad, and you’re gonna hang up on me, and then my fiancé’s gonna have to console me through the process.

Imogen: Yeah that is very familiar to me.

Niko: I’ve been reading your other interviews, the interviews that are up right now, there’s one in Vulture and I think Casey [Plett]’s is in Harper’s Bazaar. The afterword is an excerpt in The Paris Review. How does it feel to be revisiting it now in such a grand fashion?

Imogen: It’s really surreal. I feel like I’ve talked about this a little bit in some of those places, but like I mentioned, my roots are in printing up a zine and dropping them off at whatever stores in Berkeley were selling zines. And yeah, it would have seemed absurd when I was writing Nevada in 2008 to be like, Vulture and Harper’s Bazaar are going to be interested in this. Which reflects a real cultural shift around the locationality of trans people or whatever. I don’t think I have anything super wise to say about it except that it’s surreal.

You mentioned, indirectly, insecurity stuff. And I feel like, yeah, it brings up insecurity stuff for me, too. I feel like, yes, I published this book and then went on to have two kids, write for three TV shows, and get a master’s degree — but where the fuck is my second book, right? Who only publishes one book? I feel self-conscious about not having gotten another one out. But at the same time, just trying to reorient my brain’s automatic default self-critical process to gratitude. Like, it’s actually fucking rad that people are interested in this thing. And so just trying to sit with that, rather than with all the, I don’t know, trauma stuff that comes up whenever anybody pays attention to me. You know what I mean?

Niko: Over the years has your personal relationship to Nevada changed?

Imogen: When I had first written it, I was stoked for it. I wanted to make it work. I wanted to get it out into the world. I was like, “this is a book that does a thing that I haven’t seen before that I feel like I need and so therefore, other people probably need it too.” I sent it out while the second half still didn’t work to Soft Skull [Press] and they said “eah, we’re gonna pass on this’ and I said, “cool, I’m gonna put this in the drawer and just chalk it up to an experience about learning how to write a novel and start another one.” And as I was trying to get it together to figure out what the next one to try to write was, Topside [Press] happened. And they were like, “actually hold on, let’s take this out of the drawer and get it to work.”

And I’ve talked and written about how helpful that editing process was, even though it was really humbling. But I mean, to some extent, it worked. I was like, “I’ve got a book that I need to do a thing,” and we figured out how to make the book do the thing that I wanted to do, which was a bunch of things that everything that Nevada is engaging with, we got to the point where it does that. And then we published it, and it got in people’s hands, and then people were like, “holy shit, this book does the thing that I needed to see.” Which is so cool.

As much as it’s really difficult to engage with some of the praise that it’s gotten, part of what I did in the afterword was to say, “oh, please don’t give me as much credit as you’re giving me for inventing a thing that I did not invent — here are all the roots of what I was trying to do.” I’m not some genius who invented literature centering marginalized voices — or even this specific kind of marginalized voice. So not getting wrapped up in this idea that Nevada is super important, or whatever, because it’s just not for me to decide. But in terms of it as — the word art feels pretentious — as a thing that I made that I wanted to be a certain thing, it seems like I made it. And it is the thing that I wanted it to be. And a lot of people have felt like it was the thing that I want it to be. So it feels like I made a thing that is successful. It is the thing I wanted it to be. While I struggle with praise, the reality is when somebody tells you “you made this thing that saved my life,” that rules. That is unbelievable. You know what I mean? When somebody’s like, “holy shit, I never saw myself in a novel before,” what a cool thing to be able to put into the world. I feel super grateful that all the steps that it takes to get a novel into the world, worked out in the way that it’s been so important to a lot of people — that’s awesome.

As for my relationship to it, I mean, it’s so specific in this moment, because we just did so much of the editing process and all the copy editing and going over it and over it and reading the audiobook — I feel so close to this text right now, in a way that makes me feel like, how to say this exactly, what I see when I look at it now, a lot of it is things I would do differently now, things that feel immature or sentences that feel like why did you do that sentence in that way? I wish I could remember who tweeted this thing, but somebody tweeted a thing at one point years ago that was like, there are two types of first novels: One is a stranger comes to town and the other is I have no fucking idea how to write a novel. I was like, wow, that really resonates.

Not to take away from what Nevada does, because on some level I feel like Nevada just had a thing that it needed to say so much that it sort of wills itself to work no matter any shortcomings I could say about my own writing or structuring or anything like that. I feel like I’m sounding really down on it when I’m not. I’m not like this is shit or anything. It’s just, I think mostly what I see right now are things that feel kind of immature to me. And that’s not to imply that everything about it is immature, because ultimately, I think it does work.

There are people who don’t like the ending; I think the ending is great. I still don’t care that people don’t like it. My relationship to it now, I feel like — as one would hope — I’ve learned a lot about writing in the last bunch of years. And it doesn’t feel like something I would write in the way that it’s written today, but that’s probably a good thing, right? Like, we all talk about how if you write a thing and it’s perfect and then you don’t have anything to improve on it, like you can just stop writing and go do something else. Because you already did it. And I feel like that’s not where I’m at at all. I feel stoked that it works, and it has really resonated with people, and my relationship to it is very much: I think very highly of it.

And also getting really close to it at this point is a little bit difficult. Because it just feels like where my head was at 15 years ago when I was at a really different place in my life, in terms of experience with the world and understandings of how trauma works, and all these things that are kind of central to my understanding of being trans in the world and people and all these things. I don’t know.

Niko: I’m one of those people. I lived in the Yukon when I came out, and I was on fucking Reddit being like, what’s a trans person? The only other trans person I know is Ivan Coyote, and Ivan doesn’t live here anymore. Somebody sent me a copy of Nevada, the first press of it that had notes in the margin. Some stranger I met on Reddit sent it to me, and I read it, and I was like, holy fuck, because, like you said, every other trans book I had ever seen was: I was a man and I was sad, and I transitioned and now I’m a woman and I’m happy. I live like this.

I wanted to ask you about the ending of Nevada specifically, because I know some people don’t like it. I think it’s great. And I wonder if you think the reason why people are frustrated with the ending of Nevada is because they want transition to fix something. They want there to be some sort of happy ending they can point to and say, this is resolved and I know how this ends. This is my theory as to why people don’t like the ending, and I’ve waited my whole life to be able to ask you this. [laughs]

Imogen: Yeah, definitely! And I mean, I think I would complicate that by the fact that narratively, people want things to be wrapped up, right? When the narrative of Nevada is so deeply intertwined with the narrative of being trans and not necessarily transition per se, but being trans. I think if you’re reading the book as a three act structure, I feel like I’ve seen people say, this is a book that has three acts but you’ve just chopped off the third act. I mean, the ending is abrupt. I feel like you’re set up to expect Maria to fix James, to make him figure out he’s trans and then transition and not be a dissociated mess of a stoner anymore. I feel like that’s like the happy ending we’re looking for. And then from that, Maria learns something about herself or whatever. It’s the thing that Maria wants the story to be, which she knows it’s not going to be as she’s doing it. I think that’s part of why it has such an impact. It’s interesting.

There’s a person who did an interview with me for W Magazine, speaking of magazines that it’s surreal to be interviewed by, Daniel Spielberger. He was asking me about the state of what it was like to be trans in 2008. And 2005. Whenever. And I was saying, there were trans people around, there was a TV show about trans people in 2005, it’s not like trans people were a secret. It’s just that it was much easier to say “trans people are over there, and we don’t interact with them” than it is nowadays. But I was saying you could point to trans people who had transitioned a while ago. There are people like Jennifer Finney Boylan who published her autobiography about transitioning in 2002 or something. But it just felt like they had nothing for me. Yes, there have been previous generations: Sandy Stone was doing work; there were people to point to who were awesome, right. But at the same time, it also felt like this previous generation was just coming from such a different place that was so invested in an older model of being trans.

All of which is just to say, I felt like, as I was reading Nevada, I was like, I wish that there were people from a previous generation of being trans who could tell me how to fucking do this. And Daniel from W Magazine pointed out that like, that’s what this book is, it’s a person from one generation of being trans, James, having somebody from like a previous generation saying, hey, I want to help you. I want to show you how to do this and how much that just doesn’t fucking work? And so to some extent, it was really about me wanting to have somebody tell me how to be trans in a way that, I don’t know, felt maternal. And at the same time, I just didn’t get to have that and was rejecting it. This is feeling more abstract as I’m saying it, but I think that idea of being a younger trans person and rejecting the previous generation of trans people and…will you remind me what you said about your take on the ending, so I can go back to that?

There are people who don’t like the ending; I think the ending is great. I still don’t care that people don’t like it.

Niko: I think people want it to wrap up nicely, because we want to be able to point to the page and say, this is where it resolves. But it’s like The Sopranos in a way; it kind of ruins it when we know. Now we know because David Chase said this year that Tony Soprano dies and like, we didn’t need to know that.

Imogen: He did? I didn’t know that?

Niko: [laughs] oh yeah, spoiler alert

[both laugh]

Niko: But there’s so much more. I reread Nevada this year, and I hadn’t read it since I first got that copy from that stranger on Reddit. It really struck me that at the time I really needed there to be an answer there. And in fact, there’s actually lots of little answers.

Imogen: I mean, I think you’re right. I don’t disagree with anything you’ve said about the ending. And people really wanting something like a resolution, right? And how inconsistent the rest of the book would have felt if we got a different resolution. To me, it feels like there’s a level of resolution there. It feels like Maria is saying I’m a mess. And then she decides to address that by helping this other person. She’s like, maybe instead of being so focused on myself, I’ll focus on somebody else and see if that is transformative for both of us. And she’s terrible at it. And it’s not transformative for James. And so James, you know, one of the things we always talk about in writing is about characters making a choice. And it ends with James making such a clear choice. It’s just not the one you want for all the characters, but I feel like it would be just way more out of the blue for James to be like, oh, shit, you’re right and then head off a third section of the book where James is starting to transition like that would be much more reassuring. But you know, the old trans memoir model was supposed to be reassuring, right? That thing of I was a man and I was unhappy, and then I became a woman and now I’m happy is like, great, I’m stoked for you. But I feel like, for myself, my own experience has been a lot more complicated than that. I don’t regret transitioning at all. I don’t think it was a bad idea. But to act like it’s as simple as I was mad, and I was unhappy and now I’m a woman, and I’m happy — it just feels, I don’t know, not human. You know what I mean?

Niko: Well, it makes it a light switch that you turn off and on. You’re like, oh, the lights were off, and then I turned them on, and it turns out there was all this cool shit around me. And all I had to do was turn the lights on. I know Maria is not not the main character of Nevada. I know that this is a story about James, and I think a lot of people misconstrue Maria as the main character, because she shows up earlier.

Imogen: And she’s more interesting and talks better. There’s a lot of reasons Maria is more compelling than James.

Niko: Sure, absolutely. But the thing I really appreciated, because when I came out, you know, I had a drinking problem I hadn’t addressed, I was broke and I had all these fundamental problems with myself. And I thought that I wasn’t allowed to have those if I was going to do this thing, because every book it’s like it’s the beginning, it’s the transition, and then you’re you’re a woman and you’re better now, and everything is fixed. Well, what happens if everything isn’t fixed? What happens if all these broken parts of me still exist when I’m done? I’ve never seen or heard that story, maybe because we don’t want to admit that we can still be fundamentally flawed. I always think of transitioning and sobering up as the same thing. When I decided to get sober, I was like, oh fuck, there’s all these problems I have to address, I can still be a bad person, oh no.

Imogen: I can’t agree with that strongly enough. When I was coming out and starting to transition, I had a friend who was getting sober at the same time, and she was doing, you know, 90 meetings in 90 days, and really just working the program. And the stuff we were bouncing off each other at the time was so intense and so real and unprecedented in my life. I still feel like the 12-step program of making you examine your shit and figure out what your shit is and what you can do about it is so powerful. I mean, the work that I do now, so much of therapy is about trauma and the way trauma works. It has an impact that just kind of keeps going. That’s what’s fascinating to me about people, right? Like, how do we get to the place we are? Because I don’t believe that people are crazy. And so, and this is consistent with what people have been talking about in the psychology world for the last 20-25 years, maybe longer. It’s like, some people, not everybody is on the same page as this. But like the reality that if somebody comes to you, and they’re doing something that looks like, quote unquote, crazy, like, what if instead of saying you are crazy, we say, “wow, what happened that has you acting in this way?” Like, what is actually the logical path that got you to this point? It’s how people fucking work. And so yeah, I think that was a big piece of what Nevada was trying to do.

Part of what’s so frustrating about trans memoir as a genre is that, it’s not like there’s nothing there that I was recognizing, when I had been out for a couple of years or prior to coming out. There was stuff that I was like, yes, this resonates. But in order to make it palatable for publishers that were all cis people, an audience that was presumably all cis people, because trans people aren’t really, who cares what they think or buy, or whatever, was that it very much had to be this version of trans people are not complex, trans people are not messy, trans people just have a thing that gets fixed, It had to be very reassuring for cis people.

And I guess all of this is just to say it feels really important to acknowledge that trans people are as complex as everyone else, and always have been. And that reality was just so hard to access for so long. That’s what I was looking for. That was a big part of the impetus to write Nevada. I don’t know, I’m not in charge of the broader context in which Nevada is coming out now in this much wider release, but… [sighs]

But to a certain degree, you at least get to provide more context now. Because you’re able to talk about it from bigger platforms. If people are gonna read this book in their book clubs or whatever the fuck, they are now going to be able to read interviews in online publications they know, because they probably weren’t seeing — you did interviews and press around the first release of it — but they’re probably not seeing those because they’re not plugged in in the same way that a lot of us are. So now you’re kind of able to give that context for the first time. That must be interesting.

Imogen: Yeah, I mean, being trans felt complicated to me, You know what I mean? And you just didn’t see that anywhere, except on LiveJournal and at Camp Trans and maybe in trans support groups, it was really hard to access that. And I was an English major who worked in bookstores for a lot of years. The book world was where I was from, so writing that as fiction, which was something I had been trying to figure out how to do for forever, it felt like the way that made sense to me to try to like kind of shout like, hey, trans people actually, like, do get to be complicated, right? And be disappointed, and I don’t think I had the language for it back then, but to be kind of still affected by the trauma that is having to dissociate from all gendered stimuli for decades. I need us to stop lying about this, because it’s fucking lonely to feel like only me and the people that I know are acknowledging this. And who knows how much Nevada has contributed to like the evolution of cultural understandings of what being trans is. I feel like it’s probably a non-zero amount, but it’s weird to think about the complexity of just how over the years since Nevada came out, there is actually an understanding of what being trans is at the same time that — I was at Target today and they’re just selling like shirts that say like; he/him she/her they/them. I’m like, at Target trying to find a fucking shirt to wear to this book release party that’s happening in a couple of days debating with myself about rainbow capitalism, and whether rainbow capitalism is better or worse than homophobic capitalism.

I feel like I don’t have any answers. Title this interview: I don’t have any answers. [laughs]

And I guess all of this is just to say it feels really important to acknowledge that trans people are as complex as everyone else, and always have been.

Niko: I was thinking about this idea of recontextualizing the book and being able to talk about these broader platforms. Was there anything about the book that you wanted to sort of talk about at the time that you just never really were afforded the opportunity to do so that’s like that you wish you could now?

Imogen: Wow, great question. I don’t know if I’m going to be able to dig into my brain from back then and find something that I wanted to talk about that I didn’t. Yeah, I mean, I think it just felt really vulnerable publishing it. And like vulnerability is terrifying. Especially when not being vulnerable has been such an important tool in surviving your life, finding ways not to be vulnerable. I feel like it was really important to, because neither of these characters is exactly me. I’ve never been a huge stoner; I share a lot of stuff with Maria but, you know, a lot of the specifics about her life — I remember being like, I’m gonna make Maria be a big Poison fan so that she’s not me.

Niko: Okay, that was actually one of my questions that I had initially because when I was re-reading it, I was like, oh right, the fucking Poison back patch that she’s unapologetic about, like makes it a point to say Poison rules, fuck you.

Imogen: I think it’s charming. It actually does add a little bit of a layer of complexity to this person in a way that I think is interesting. I think it just came from a place of, I’m gonna make Maria’s hair red and I’m gonna make her like Poison so she’s not exactly me. Yeah, um, stuff I didn’t get to talk about back then. I don’t know. I mean, I feel like in order to talk about autogynephilia, you really have to get into the weeds with trans stuff. And it’s a pretty rare space to get to do that. But I feel like, you know, 10 years later, there’s a lot more awareness of just like how this idea of autogynephilia is a cis normative trap that doesn’t actually stand up to any kind of scrutiny, although it did and continues to have some cultural way that people still talk about autocgynephilia as if it were a real thing on the internet. You know, it’s mostly people who are appreciating the same kind of internet media that James appreciates, but I don’t even know what I would have talked about with it. I don’t know if I can answer that question.

It’s interesting that my first thought was vulnerability. I don’t know how exactly that connects to what I wanted to talk about. Maybe it was just that I felt really vulnerable to talk about all this stuff. And I’ve said this before: This isn’t a book about my own experience. This is a book about experiences of myself as well as a lot of other trans women I’ve known who have had very similar things, whose shit lines up in a similar way. Yeah, it felt scary to put that out, but you know, reinforcing the idea that like, punk rock, DIY, underground, whatever language you want to use is a valuable framework. Like, a lot of the stuff that I was afraid of, in terms of Nevada being a vulnerable novel, was made less potent pretty early on in that tour. I’m like, going to a place and challenging myself to read like the passage about when James buys the fucking dress, and it’s in the back of his closet — that’s so painful, and challenging myself to read it and really being met by people being like, holy shit, we like this book, you’re not a monster, we don’t hate you for talking about this thing, it’s actually a powerful experience to hear this stuff said out loud.

I wish I had more language than just saying, “I wanted this book to do a thing, and it managed to do that thing and people have appreciated that it does that thing.” But I feel like that’s like one of the things that the book does, is to say these are experiences that not all trans people have. Nevada is obviously not universal, but these are experiences that a lot of people have and can relate to.

Niko: It’s not universal, but it creates a new experience in the same breath. You created a cult classic, a book released on an independent press that became this thing that’s so important that strange people on Reddit are sending me copies that have their notes in the margin. You created a new experience that we hadn’t seen that you could buy and read and you could share with people and discourse about I mean, Christ, there’s been discourse about this book since it fucking came out [laughs]

Imogen: Yeah. Yeah. I don’t know. I don’t feel like a magic person who, you know, flicks the light switch and everything changes in terms of culture or whatever. But I just felt really grateful that I was like, I’m going to try to do this thing. And it feels scary to do and people were like, holy shit, you pulled it off and we appreciate that. That’s so rad.

Niko: It creates a world where you can look at Torrey Peters and you can sort of draw this line and say okay, we can tell complicated, nuanced kind of fucked-up stories that people are going to take issue with, or are going to feel seen in in one page and be like who the fuck is this person in the next? And you can see that line.

Nevada is a road trip book to a degree, but I don’t see people talk about it as a road trip book necessarily.

Imogen: Yeah, I mean, it’s playing with the idea of a road trip book. But there’s, there’s a theme in Nevada, of cutting out the middle part that’s supposed to be the important part. So you know, it was this idea of let’s not show anyone transitioning, let’s show somebody who’s before transitioning, and maybe after transitioning. And I guess it’s not exactly the same, but let’s put heroin on the table. And then not have anybody use it. Who writes a story that has heroin in it, where nobody does anything except takes it. And so there’s a piece there, too, that’s about let’s read a road trip novel where actually, they get in the car for a minute, but we don’t see her really doing any of this road tripping.

Niko: Yeah, it’s interesting to have a smoking gun that never gets fired.

Imogen: Except insofar as you know, I’m not in charge of anybody’s interpretation of any of the symbolism in Nevada, but you know, Maria is like, oh I’ll buy this opiate that’s gonna make me feel good and then not feel anything. And James is like, I’m gonna steal some of that from you. It very much symbolizes the dissociation and repression stuff in a way that’s kind of like the ending, right. It’s not what you fucking want, I’m not going to give you what you fucking want. Because what you want is like this pat thing that is going to be very reassuring. When, in a sense, the messiness and what Nevada actually does wound up being a lot more reassuring than what ostensibly would have been more reassuring. It comes down again, not to go back to this, but it comes back to what is the novel that would be reassuring for a trans person versus what is a novel that would be reassuring for a cis person who is not interested in the complexity of trans lives, right?

I feel like I don’t have any answers. Title this interview: I don’t have any answers.

Niko: Yeah, but they want to feel good about their impact on trans people so they want to read a book where a trans person is okay, because they need to be the center of it somehow.

I’ve only got a couple of minutes left. And I would be remiss if I was the one trans woman that didn’t ask you about your Kurt Cobain book.

Imogen: Oh man. Yeah, the Kurt Cobain book. Um, once again, somebody interviewed me, I think it was Harron [Walker] for Vulture who pointed out that the reason Nevada took so long to go from first draft to published novel was that I didn’t feel like it worked. And I felt like I needed to get it to a place where it works. And the fucking Kurt Cobain novel is the same thing. Like, the structure is there. The story is there, like it works, it has an ending that I think is going to be much more like, God, I’m teasing this shit in this interview, I’m sorry everyone, but it has an ending that is really good, that is not ambiguous, or whatever it is that people don’t like about the ending to Nevada. It’s just that the way it’s structured right now, it starts off, it kind of hits the ground, you’re running, you’re with these characters, and then it hits a wall and stops having any momentum. And when I’m reading through it, I’m like, What the fuck happened? And so, what really needs to happen is I just need to find the time and energy to get back to it and like make that momentum not die, 25 pages into it. So yeah, um, how much do I want to talk about it beyond that? I don’t know.

Niko: This has been so great. And Nevada changed my life. So thank you for that.

Imogen: Fuck yeah! I’m so stoked about that. I know. Yeah. What a cool thing to have been able to put into the world, right? A book that somebody on the internet sends to you. And it’s really important. That’s so cool. I feel nothing but gratitude around that stuff.

Great. Yeah. I’m sure I’ll bump into you at some point, and we’ll see each other, and it’ll be awesome. But until then, take care.

Niko: You too. Bye bye.

The Nevada reissue is out now from FSG.

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Niko Stratis

Niko Stratis is a freelance writer whose work has appeared in outlets like SPIN, Bitch, Xtra, Catapult and more. Her work primarily focuses on culture, the 1990s, queer/trans topics and as often as possible where all those ideas intersect. 

She wrote that piece about Jackass that you liked and also the Gin Blossoms one. 

She is also the creator and host of V/A Club, a podcast about movie soundtracks.

Niko lives in downtown Toronto with her fiancé and their dog and 2 cats. She is a cancer.

Niko has written 30 articles for us.


  1. “Affected by the trauma that is having to dissociate from all gendered stimuli for decades” was a sentence that definitely brought up some feelings. Thanks for this interview, it was interesting stuff!

  2. I went to a Topside Press reading circa 2014 and Imogen read a little bit of her next work in progress, the Kurt Cobain book. I’ve been waiting for it ever since! Very cool that Nevada is getting more recognition now. My only question is where do I get the merch???

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