5 Burning Questions with Timothy DeLizza

As well as feature our future readers, we also wanted to check in with folks who have read for us over the last 5 years. Timothy DeLizza read for us in 2018 – read what he has been up to below!

What have you been up to since reading with us at Writers & Words? How has the writing been going?

Shortly before the pandemic, I adopted three domestic rats from Small Angels Rescue in Frederick, Maryland. Vinnie, Gordo and Harry have made fine pandemic company. I documented the process, as well as the history of human/rat relations in an essay which recently won the 2020 Barry Lopez Nonfiction Award. The essay will be published in Cutthroat next summer.  You can see many cute pictures of them via my Instagram. https://www.instagram.com/timothydelizza/?hl=en

My 35-minute comedic play about Baltimore, “Charm City Counselors at Love” (co-written w/ Colin Beckman) was originally going to be performed at the 2020 Capital Fringe Fest. It was not. But it has been published by Another Chicago Magazine: https://anotherchicagomagazine.net/2020/12/17/charm-city-counselors-at-love-by-colin-beckman-timothy-delizza/?fbclid=IwAR0UtKDpke_osAHogXUJVl1ZLa31VU4aiIJzb9tmYHQRvNdVFZ8z_DgrYwE

Although I’m in no way affiliated with them, I’ve donated a few times to the B’More Community Fridge @ 209 McAllister Street. If you live in Baltimore, they are perhaps the single most efficient way to fight hunger. In essence, people directly donate the food, and others who are hungry can take it. Focus is on fresh and healthy items, but you are also welcome to clear out non-expired staples from your pantry and avoid food waste. https://www.instagram.com/bmorecommunityfridge/?hl=en 

What are you working on right now (writing or otherwise (nothing is a valid answer as well))?

I’m primarily working on the same novel that I was working on when I last read for W&W (and for the ten years before that). It is called A Gift of Two and is literary speculative fiction that takes place followed the 1977 riots in New York.

What has been your favorite Quarantine Read thus far?

In terms of writers who know personally, I enjoyed You Exist Too Much, the fiction debut by my old friend Zaina Arafat, which is a propulsive read about love addiction, complex mother/daughter relationships and the difficulty of coming out in a semi-traditional Arab family. 

In terms of revisiting older works, I enjoyed Tigana by Guy Gavriel Kay, which originally came out in 1990 and involves magical battles in a country that resembles renaissance Italy. Kay once assisted Tolkien in assembling the Silmarillion. A very immersive, thought-provoking meditation on how conquered countries can be stripped of their identity and the work to regain that identity back.

How would you describe the writing community where you live in just a few words?

The Baltimore and DMV writing communities are small but supportive. In non-pandemic times, my Drinking Club saloon is able to draw 40+ folks bi-annually, all of whom are engaged and often leave with a new friend to collaborate with.  

What would be a few words of advice you would give someone wanting to get into any writing community?

Join a writers group and a book club. Many local libraries coordinate and host writers groups. Attend local reading series and craft talks. Some series have gone online. The Inner Loop in DC is a good place to start if you’re in the DMV area and missing the W&W experience.

If you are a male writer who is trying to write more developed female characters, I recently published a craft piece on the topic about one way I’ve tried to get better myself.

Bonus question: what level of quarantine are you at? 1) relaxing with a book,  2) the dog clears her throat too loudly,  3) hot dog fries, 4) THE PRINTER IS BROKEN I DON’T NEED A PRINTER, 5) I am one with the Force and the Force is with me.

The rats are quiet companions so I can’t say 2. I want to say 4, but I bought a printer for the first time in over a decade recently, so apparently I do still need one. So my answer is the emotions evoked by 4 but not the literal description?


Timothy DeLizza lives in Baltimore, MD. During daytime hours, he’s an energy attorney for the government. His prose has recently appeared in Another Chicago Magazine, New South, and the Potomac Review. His work can be found here: http://www.timothy-delizza.com/

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