Hurley Winkler: Bridge Eight Literary Magazine Feature

September 30, 2014 1 comment Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

Hurley Winkler has quickly become the darling of Jacksonville’s literary arts scene. With hands in so many projects and influence that increases with everything she does, it’s not hard to say that she has won the hearts of so many in so little time. To name only two of the projects she’s working on, she writes and edits for Perversion Magazine and manages production for the regional podcast, Swamp Radio.

Words with Hurley Winkler, the Darling of Jacksonville’s Literary Arts Scene
By Jared Rypkema

Hurley will be presenting her written work this Thursday night at Grape & Grain Exchange alongside Sam Bilheimer and Valerie Anthony for the third installment of ABRIDGED, a semi-regular reading event presented by Bridge Eight Literary Magazine.  

In preparation for the reading, Alexander Lloyd from Bridge Eight sits down with Hurley to nit-pick her writerly mind and see what she has to say about her activities, influences, and greatest love of all, writing.

Alexander: What have you been writing lately?

Hurley: I’ve been going to the Jacksonville Beach Fishing Pier to compose a series of observational vignettes. It’s an ongoing thing, and I really love writing it—the varied routines of the people on the pier fascinate me. I’ve also been cooking up the next episode of my illustrated series “Girl Crush,” which I publish with Perversion Magazine.

Alexander: Is there a special place (physically or mentally) you like to be when you write?

Hurley: Sure. Physically, I like writing with a pen in a journal first, and typing becomes a separate step, post-creative-process. I become a psycho self-editor when I type. Writing in a journal has always felt comfortable to me. I like to believe that Harriet the Spy gave me the inspiration as a child to always have a hyper-observational, hunkered-over stance when I write.

But a special place mentally? Hmm. I think I’m still trying to figure that one out. I’m not trying to limit myself mentally by saying, “Oh, I’m feeling [insert mood here], so I’ll write after that goes away.” I try to write in all kinds of scenarios, physical and mental. But a cup of coffee generally helps in any of these moments. And oh, I need to make my bed before I can be completely productive (I’m Southern).

Alexander: What influences (if any) has growing up in Jacksonville had on your writing?

Hurley: I don’t think I’d be a writer if I hadn’t grown up in Jacksonville. Everyone is a storyteller here, and I think I picked it up from friendly strangers. Anyone is up for a conversation. Folks around here aren’t standoffish at all.

Alexander: What do you hope Jacksonville will be known for in the next 5 years?

Hurley: I think anyone raised in Jacksonville hopes to see a bustling downtown. We’ve reached the point as a city/arts community where people have stopped complaining, “Bah humbug, there’s nothing to do downtown,” and have replaced that negativity with, “Well, let’s make something happen downtown!” I hope that sentiment keeps going strong, and that Jacksonville is known for our from-the-ground-up attitude that seems to get neglected in other cities. I also hope to see our literary community grow and grow. I mean, look how much we’ve grown in the past year! What’s next for the writers and readers in Jacksonville? I can’t wait to see. I’m always cheering for Jacksonville. It’s the best place in the world.

Alexander: Perversion Magazine just came out with its second Issue. Is there anything you’d like to say about that project?

Hurley: I can’t shut up about Perversion. It’s the most exciting project I’ve ever worked on, and I want every eye on it. The vision of our magazine is even stronger than it felt when we laid out the first issue in the Spring, and I can’t express how great that feels to our team. And we’re in it for the long haul. Perversion is my biggest long-term goal.

Alexander: You’ve graduated from UNF and are working with Perversion and Swamp Radio. Where do you go from here?

Hurley: I’m going to graduate school! I’ll attend the low-residency MFA program at Lesley University to study Fiction. When I tell some people that I’m doing this, they get really bummed because they assume I’ll have to move to go to school. But I’m not moving away! The low-residency format allows me to live in Jacksonville for the length of the program, to travel to Massachusetts for ten days of residency at a time. No, I could never leave Jacksonville—where I go from here is right here.

To learn more about Hurley’s reading at ABRDIGED, visit

ABRIDGED is literary event presented by Bridge Eight Literary Magazine and is committed to bringing semi-regular readings of fiction, poetry and creative nonfiction to Jacksonville.

Thursday, October 2 • 7PM
The Grape & Grain Exchange Parlour
2000 San Marco Blvd

HURLEY WINKLER, fiction & creative non-fiction

Hurley Winkler is a native/lover of Jacksonville. She writes + edits for the publication Perversion Magazine, and manages production for the regional podcast Swamp Radio. Hurley has an English degree from her beloved University of North Florida, and will begin graduate work in Creative Writing at Lesley University in January 2015. She has contributed work to The Legendary, 396 Hours, and Wild Application. Hurley falls under that “millennial” category you’ve probably read about in the newspaper, so she’s on Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr all the time: @hurleywinkler

SAM BILHEIMER, poetry & fiction

Sam is a writer, editor, and musician, living in Jacksonville, Florida. He is a staff writer and editor for Perversion Magazine, and is an assistant editor for the online literary magazine, Fiction Fix. His work has been featured in Epigraph Magazine, 396 Hours, and Yes, They’re Real. Sam has previously self-published two chapbooks of poetry and short stories, titled Send Me Something Shiny and This Young Man Is Very Well Read, but He Knows Nothing about Real Life, and he is currently working on a third, titled Our Fingerprints Are Dinosaurs. When Sam is not busy obsessing over the intricacies of time travel, he is doing useless and boring things on the Internet. You can follow him on twitter @acousticsam.


Valerie is simply one of the most iconic writer/theatrical presences of the Jacksonville Culture. Currently a professor at UNF, she helped to pioneer  contemporary theatre performances in Jacksonville through her work with Jacksonville Actor's Theatre, and was the central character in the early 90s struggle over censorship in the local arts during her performance of 'The Maids'.