Get to Know Our Volume 8 Contributors: An Interview with Truck Schachtman

*Truck Schachtman is a contributing writer for the Oakland Arts Review‘s Volume 8, which features their essay “Quoniam with Jockey Up.” They are a freshman painting and printmaking major at Virginia Commonwealth University. Schachtman has previously been published in the award-winning Hickman Review.

When did you first begin writing creatively, and how did your interest in writing develop from there? 

I grew up an avid reader thanks to my parents, which I guess naturally progressed into writing. I was in a lot of writing classes in High School, and thanks to my creative writing teacher, I was also shuffled into things like poetry club. As a primarily visual artist, my writing has often been forced to take a backseat to my painting, so I’m grateful for opportunities which give me an excuse to write. 

Can you describe what the process was like for you as you developed ideas for and wrote “Quoniam with Jockey Up”? 

I wrote “Quoniam with Jockey Up” in my expository writing class last semester. We were tasked with examining a painting at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and translating that painting into a more personal narrative. I chose the painting Quoniam with Jockey Up (which also became the piece’s title) due to how odd the figures of the man and the horse looked, especially juxtaposed beside many more realistically rendered pairs of riders. 

What was the greatest challenge you faced while writing the piece? Your proudest moment?

Both my proudest moment and my greatest challenge with this piece was finding an ending for it. I knew I wanted to use the segments I had written describing the painting, and the history of horses in art, but I struggled a lot coming up with a personal narrative to finish off the essay. After a few calls with my mother and brainstorming sessions, I was able to complete it.

What do you hope your readers will take away with them after reading “Quoniam with Jockey Up”?

After reading “Quoniam with Jockey Up,” I would hope readers would come away with at least a little inspiration. For me, creativity often doesn’t come when I expect it to, and it can be as simple as seeing an unusual painting that can enable you to create!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.