We had the good fortune of connecting with Christopher Mardiroussian and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Christopher, what’s the end goal, career-wise?
As I approach earning a graduate degree from California State University, Long Beach, I’ve thought long and hard about where I want to go, what I want to accomplish, and the legacy I’d like to leave behind. Ideally, I’d want to have secured a tenure position teaching freshman composition at a community college or university; where I support students, help guide them towards their goals, and keep in touch with them. As an educator, I’d want to be available for both current and former students so that I can continue supporting them as teachers have done with me. As a writer, I’d like to publish novels, poetry, and short stories; in doing so, helping others publish their work as well. I’d hope to collaborate with diverse, talented visionaries to create something for people to savor. I’d like to tour all over the world and perform poetry with these artists from around the globe. In the end, I’d want to have learned and grown from everyone I’ve encountered. When it’s all said and done, I’d want my legacy to consist of collaborating with various visionaries, producing content for people to enjoy, and educating future generations.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am a poet, novelist, and producer. Not only am I dedicated to my craft, but my willingness to help other artists achieve their goals is equally as important. When living in a city like L.A. (arguably the “hub” of culturally diverse art, music, and entertainment), where many from around the globe come in search of achieving their dreams and are willing to make difficult sacrifices all in the pursuit of mastering their craft, it’s not easy. It’s extremely important to help out your fellow up and coming artists; to treat them as family and help them along the way as they strive to achieve their goals. Ideally, this is what we should aim for. In a world filled with obstacles, we are stronger together than as individuals. With that being said, I’m proud of the work I’ve done over the years. For starters, back in 2017, I co-wrote with a friend of mine, Manlio Gutierrez, a collection of poetry published by Lulu entitled HONESTY. LOVES. CRUELTY. It not only took years to write, but it was a stepping stone for getting a publication under my belt as well as collaborating with an up and coming artist. Then, in 2019, I co-wrote and co-produced my first short film entitled IL BREAKUP with my friend Ericka de Alexander that ended up winning first place at the Cinema Italian Style film festival held in Los Angeles; sending us to Rome where we not only explored the city and were immersed within the culture, but we got to visit their historic Cinecittà Studios (considered the largest film studio in Europe). Recently, I’ve been really proud of publishing two chapters (JELL-O; LEAKY FAUCET) of my forthcoming novel entitled RISK IT FOR THE BRISKET; JELL-O published by Bluntly Magazine, and LEAKY FAUCET published by DLG Publishing Partners. Nevertheless, I’m excited to one day bring my work onto the big screen for people to enjoy. As with any profession, it’s difficult to hit the ground running when you first start out. Especially, as a writer, trying to establish yourself is grueling because of the seemingly endless rejection letters flooding your inbox. However, I’ve found that surrounding yourself with people who not only support you, but read and provide feedback is definitely helpful for maintaining a positive, persistent, and optimistic mindset. Similarly, the same can be said about filmmaking; when your equipment malfunctions or your behind schedule, it’s essential to be a part of a team that is not only dedicated to the project, but shares that perseverance to not give up. Nonetheless, from hours of revision to days of filming, working with others helped me overcome various obstacles. Lastly, it’s important to learn from everyone you meet; be sure to ask questions, practice, and share all newfound knowledge with others. How do you expect to blossom without sunlight and water?
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
In Los Angeles, there are a seemingly illimitable number of sites/spots to visit or choose from. It’s difficult to choose places to eat as you find so many great establishments all over LA on every block. However, I’d go to places like Pink’s Hot Dogs, Canter’s Deli, Roscoe’s Chicken & Waffles, Catch LA etc. If you’re in the area, some sites to check out during the day are the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Hollywood Wax Museum, Griffith Observatory, Santa Monica Pier etc. At night, places to check out are Upstairs at the Ace Hotel, No Vacancy, Jameson’s Irish Pub, Elbow Room, Dirty Laundry etc. Of course, being an LA native, I feel like there’s so much to explore and uncover; adventure is around every corner and you won’t ever be bored!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’d like to thank CSULB, for allowing me to forge long lasting relationships with the English Department faculty and students. And last but not least, to Robert Guffey, Charles Bukowski, and John Fante, without all of whom I would never have become the writer I am today.
Youtube: chris mardiroussian