Check This Out: Vauhini Vara discusses her debut collection of stories 'This is Salvaged'
Check This Out is a seasonal, literary series airing each spring and fall. Stayed tuned for more conversations with emerging and diverse authors beginning in April 2024.
While each story is independent, all her characters are searching for meaning through one another. In one story, a young girl reads the encyclopedia to her elderly neighbor, who is descending into dementia. In another, a pair of teenagers seek intimacy as phone-sex operators. Vara writes about a competitive sibling who tries to rise above the drunken mess of her own life to become a loving aunt. And, in the title story, an experimental artist takes on his most ambitious project yet: constructing a life-size ark according to the Bible’s specifications.
These stories are wild, at times wacky, and you will read them quickly one after the other as Vara asks in each vignette: How can we connect to one another, to this world, to this life?
Vara is a journalist and editor. She's also a Visiting Assistant professor of English at Colorado State University.