I’m a lawyer by trade and practice law at a large technology company, so it’s perhaps not surprising I find writers who have law degrees, like Ken Liu and Theodora Goss, intriguing.
I admire contemporary writers of “interstitial fiction” who deny that boundaries ought to exist between literary fiction and science fiction/fantasy. I seek to merge both sensibilities in my own work.
I’ve participated in fiction writing workshops at Stanford University with some great writers at the helm, including the lovely and talented Julie Orringer and her lovely and talented husband, Ryan Harty. More recently I’ve been studying at Philip Schultz‘s The Writers’ Studio, where I participate in the online Master Class. I completed several science fiction and fantasy workshops and related courses with Cat Rambo, who is not only a warm and generous person and a gifted writer, but also an excellent teacher. And I’ve also studied speculative fiction writing with another excellent writer and teacher, Alyx Dellamonica, through UCLA.
My interests are many and varied as I have an acute curiosity about people, the world, and disciplines in which I am not expert. I love to read, travel, and run. I’ve become intense about various avocations (gardening, tea tasting) for short periods. I was a big computer gamer back in the day. In the 1990s, I hung out on the CompuServe Gamers+ forum (where I sysoped for a while under the handle “Morgana”). These days I try not to get sucked into games as I find them addicting.
J.J. Roth is a pen name. The two J’s come from the middle initials of the aforementioned two young sons. “Roth” is the opposite of my real name — easy to spell, pronounce, and (I hope) remember — as well as a name with strong literary and ethnic echos that resonate with me.
You can reach me at jjroth.writes [at] gmail.com, on Twitter where I am @wrothroth, or on Facebook where I am JJ Roth.