Barbara Lock

Barbara Lock’s writing appears or is forthcoming in Yalobusha Review, New Delta Review, Fiction International, Superstition Review, The Forge, Peripheries, SYNAPSIS, Best Short Stories from the Saturday Evening Post’s Great American Fiction Contest 2020, The Westchester Review, X-RAY, and elsewhere. The Forge Literary Magazine nominated her piece, “Insect Music,” for a Pushcart Prize in 2021.

In an interview with The Forge, Lock discussed her nonfiction piece “Insect Music” and the feeling of not having a choice in writing it. She shared, “Sure, there was an internal pressure for me to explore my experience during peak COVID through my art, which is writing. The death by suicide of my longtime friend and colleague Dr. Lorna Breen made the pressure more intense, I would say. It felt existential, like if I couldn’t put the puzzle together correctly, if I couldn’t tell a story that made emotional sense to my artistic self, to my own unconscious, that I would continue to carry an unbearable weight. It was only after I had completed the second draft that I thought—hey, maybe this art can help others. Maybe there’s an emotional truth here that is additive to logical truth. Maybe my story can be part of the artistic record of the pandemic.” “Insect Music” can be read here.

Lock received her M.F.A. from Sarah Lawrence College with a concentration in speculative fiction. She attended Dartmouth College, Boston University School of Medicine, and completed training at the Jacobi/Montefiore combined residency in Emergency Medicine at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Lock is an experienced physician with two decades of clinical experience, board-certified in emergency medicine, and has academic and administrative work experience in evidenced based medicine, pathways design, quality, and pain. She has held a variety of administrative positions within Columbia University Emergency Medicine and in the community. She developed the Quality program within the Division of Adult Emergency Medicine at CUIMC, prior to the creation of the Department of Emergency Medicine.

Lock lives in New York and teaches Narrative Medicine at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons. She is the Associate Managing Editor of Variant Lit.

Updated July 2022

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