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Interview: Erin Cashier on “Fifteen Minutes from Now”

Tell us a bit about “Fifteen Minutes from Now.”

I basically was watching an episode of The Flash where Barry was saving lives in alternate timelines — despite the fact that by him going back and ‘fixing’ his own, he’d be negating those timeline’s very existence. That led me to thinking about what you’d actually do with that kind of power, obviously something dark and military, and “Fifteen Minutes from Now” was born.


What was the most difficult aspect of writing “Fifteen Minutes from Now,” and what was the most fun?

It wasn’t difficult once I had the voice, it’s a very tight voice-y piece, and I knew where it was going immediately. I wrote it like as a monologue intentionally, to turn it into something I could imagine an actor really chewing on and selling hard.


How has being a nurse influenced how you see the world and what you choose to write about?

I have a very dark sense of humor and have the world’s strongest stomach. If I tell you you don’t want to know what I did at work today I’m never, ever, wrong.

As far as how that influences what I choose to write about — in general, this piece aside, most of my work is more positive because I see how fragile the human condition is every day. We’re only here for a little while and life is a tenuous endeavor at best, so I usually try to be more encouraging and fun.


Who do you consider to be your influences?

Dune, MUSE, Escaflowne, Dominica Phetteplace, Rachel Swirsky.


What are you working on now?

A young adult novel and a co-writing project with a friend.


“Fifteen Minutes from Now” appears in the January/February 2019 issue of F&SF.

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