Jason Makansi, author of four non-fiction books relating to business, energy/environmental issues, and mathematical modeling, has published short stories in a variety of literary journals and collections. He is a 2009 alumnus of the Sewanee Writers Conference, has reviewed short story collections for The Short Review, and is currently a contributing editor for River Styx literary journal and Associate Editor for December literary magazine. In his spare time, he plays the viola in community orchestras, plays piano for fun, and rides his bike as often as he can.
Businesses, Initiatives, and Projects
- Sewanee Writers Conference, 2009
- St. Louis Writers Workshops, Center for Contemporary Arts (St. Louis), 2000-2002
- Coursework toward a PhD in Sociology at University of Missouri – Columbia and St. Louis (2009-)
- Class in the Strategic Management of Technology program, Washington University – St. Louis (1999)
- B.S. in Chemical Engineering, Columbia University, 1978
- What I read and some of my reviews – Goodreads
- Where I played viola from 2013- 2016 Confluence Chamber Orchestra (St. Louis)
- Where I played viola now The Foothills Phil Community Orchestra (Tucson)
Alchemist – What we have cut, chopped, poured, mixed, swirled, agitated, and processed from life has beauty and value to it. Getting it from the inside to the outside is the easy part. Making it palatable for others is not. Making it relevant to others is beyond our control. The towers of light transformed an act of war into a beacon of peace and beauty. The beams were temporary but the sentiment behind them lives forever. I once worked in an office on the 95th floor of Tower One.
No longer am I bound by the responsibilities of parenting, the tyranny of deadlines and clients,or the shackles of needing every paycheck before it shows up. But the tunnel from the professional career which sustained me and my family to alchemist of the rest of my life is longer, darker, and less linear than I ever suspected.
Chemical engineer turned consultant/analyst turned alchemist.
I write fiction. I read fiction. I am passionate about short stories. I want people who don’t write for a living to read and appreciate the art form again. I like to take real scenes, real emotions from the biography I remember, re-constitute them, and create new lives held together with fictional mortar. My best stories
come from raw emotions deeply felt at the time, repressed, yet unwilling to remain so. If fiction isn’t informed by real experience, it probably isn’t worth reading.
I compose and improvise on the piano my siblings and I played under while my mom played it above us.
I do not play with or in front of others unless you promise to look the other way or sit in another room.
I play the viola in front of audiences with other very patient and tolerant musicians.
I picked up bass guitar in my fifties.
I love sociology. I love art. I love bicycling. I worship at the altar of a systems/holistic approach to everything and always worry about unintended consequences. I live at the intersection of too many subjects, interests, and passions.
I believe one of the greatest gifts we can give every student is an understanding of uncertainty and error inherent in everything that transpires around us. (I even wrote a book about this!)
I still need recess every day.