Sophia Le Fraga’s I RL, U RL has just been released from Minutes Books.
Where are you right now?
Sophia Le Fraga :
I am…FUCK…I am at work, at the Hearst Tower.
What’s your job?
I’m a copywriter and editor at this digital ad agency.
How’d you get that job? What sorts of ads do you do?
Well so, I studied Linguistics at NYU and when I graduated, I was just all over the place, traveling up and down the California coast kind of like aimlessly, and one day this guy called me and was like, “oh NYU said that you could tutor me in Syntax and Semantics”, and I was like, “Yeah sure” and he was like, “ok be in touch when you’re back.” And when I got back, I hit him up to tutor him a couple of times a week, and when we met he was like, “I’m the SVP of this ad agency, do you want to just like… work for me?” And I was like, “Well it’s not like I’m doing much of anything else…” So that’s how I ended up here. I do all kinds of ads, from skin care stuff to like cable and internet stuff to banks and cancer treatment centers…it tends to be…an eclectic bunch.
Did you take writing classes when you were in college? Or was writing something you did on the side sort of?
Yeah totally. NYU didn’t offer a Creative Writing major but I pretty much took enough credits to double up. I took a lot of poetry, some fiction, and for two years, did an independent study with Rob Fitterman on “Poetry of the Avant-Garde”. I feel like writing was always what I wanted to do, but I wanted to have the background in Formal Linguistic to kind of… better understand what I was doing.
Can you describe some of the ways you may go about writing poetry? How did you compose I DONT WANT ANYTHING TO DO WITH THE INTERNET?
Well, so, I DON’T WANT ANYTHING happened after I submitted a sort of “open call,” asking everyone I knew on Facebook, Twitter and e-mail if they wanted a “poem”… and depending on what medium they responded in, I took from their feed, or their wall, or their e-mail and gave them each a poem of sorts, using only their language. People love to hear themselves talk.
So I guess no one was upset with the poem you made for them, then?
No, of course not! All I gave them was a word salad of whatever they’d already shared on the web.
But that’s not to say that people haven’t been upset with me. That’s all pretty extensively catalogued in “H8M8” [a section in I RL, U RL].