Silk Road Assistant Editor: Ian Scott

Ian Scott photoMajors: Psychology and Japanese

Hometown: Sheridan, Oregon

Graduation year: 2015

What impact have Pacific Universities English professors had on your choice of major/career path?

Pacific’s English professors have had a large influence on my career goals. Coming into Pacific as a freshman I only had a faint idea of what I wanted to do with my life, and then it had nothing to do with English or publishing. It was during my first creative writing course (unfortunately during my senior year) that I discovered I love fiction and want it to be my life. If it wasn’t for the encouragement of Dr. Mitra I doubt that I ever would have considered a career in writing, but now it is my dream job.

How do you think your time spent at Silk Road will transfer into the “real world”? What have you learned/hope to learn?

Well, as we are currently in the beginning stages of producing this next issue of Silk Road I am learning just how much work and effort goes into producing a single issue. However, I can honestly say I love reading submissions and just working on the magazine in general. Before this semester is over and I graduate I want to learn as much as I can about the publishing process, and working for a journal in the hopes that I can secure a job doing something similar.

Due to the popularity of digital media and e-books, what do you think might happen to book and magazine publishing in the future? Is there anything you would like (or are afraid) to see happen?

While I do recognize that the digital medium is growing I do not think that it will utterly replace printed books. I personally read both printed and digital books but my preference switches based on the situation. Books that I only intend to read once I prefer to have in a digital format; I honestly don’t have room for more books on my shelf. However, reading a physical copy provides benefits that digital doesn’t. For example people retain more information when reading physical copies rather than the digital counterparts. Plus I just love the smell of a good book, new or old. So, I don’t think that the printed format will die, nor do I think that the digital will take over. As with everything it will come to equilibrium.

What does Silk Road embody to you? What words would you use to describe Silk Road to someone who knows nothing about it?

I would describe Silk Road as a light spring morning with freshly dewed grass. It is hopeful and gently stirring like a warm breeze but guides you to places you would not expect.

Silk Road Assistant Editor: Scout Northway

Scout Northway photoMajors: Psychology, English Literature

Graduation Year: 2015

Hometown: San Diego, CA

What do you look for in a Silk Road piece (or any writing)?

Mostly I look for writing that grabs me immediately and doesn’t seem to want to let go – I like feeling drawn in, whether it’s by an image or an interesting word choice, a strange situation or weird character. I want a writer to pull me in and almost force me to keep reading. It’s amazing when, even after reading a ton of other submissions, your mind wanders back to a piece and you’re unable to stop thinking about it.

If you could have ANY job once you graduate, what would you love to do?

I would love to be an English professor at a small liberal arts college like Pacific (with tenure, of course). I really like working with students. I love their energy and passion. It would be fantastic to wake up every day and be surrounded by that energy and passion.

Do you have any authors (or pieces of literature) that inspire you?

David Poster Wallace is hugely inspirational to me. He almost demands to be read. As a reader, you can feel his writerly presence behind every single word. I love how he manages to burrow into the reader’s head, really capturing all those troubling, dark, complicated thoughts and feelings – in his characters. He’s just phenomenal – reading his work is an experience in and of itself, regardless of the content or story. I also absolutely love Flann O’Brien’s The Third Policeman. That book should be required reading for everyone. It will change your life.

What does Silk Road embody to you? What words would you use to describe Silk Road to someone who knows nothing about it?

This is only my first semester working on Silk Road, but I would describe it as a quiet, quirky, wistful little literary magazine. It’s meditative and thoughtful, sort of nostalgic, but overall charming.