Wombwell Rainbow Interviews: Scarlett Ward

Wombwell Rainbow Interviews

I am honoured and privileged that the following writers local, national and international have agreed to be interviewed by me. I gave the writers two options: an emailed list of questions or a more fluid interview via messenger.
The usual ground is covered about motivation, daily routines and work ethic, but some surprises too. Some of these poets you may know, others may be new to you. I hope you enjoy the experience as much as I do.

Scarlett Ward

is a 25 year old Poet, Witch and snail mama working from staffordshire, UK. She has had poetry featured in anthologies and literature journals from presses such such as Verve Poetry, Hedgehog Press and Fly On The Wall Publishing.

The Interview

1. What inspired you to write poetry?

My mom brought me up with stories of unicorns and fairies and it meant I always had a very romantic magical imagination. As I got older I used my writing as a way to process my emotions, deal with life around me and react to the universe I live in.

2. Who introduced you to poetry?

I remember the first poem I ever fell in love with was The Highway Man by Alfred Noyes when I was around 10. It was so tragically romantic it just broke my little heart. It’s still one of my favourite poems of all time! I can’t remember my teacher’s name but she sparked a love affair with poetry!

3. How aware were you of the dominating presence of older poets?

The term “older” is tricky. I am quite a young poet at 25, and there are a lot of older people within the literature world purely because they have worked at it for longer because they have existed for longer. There is a really great representation of younger poets in Birmingham, with many youthful poetry evenings targeted at younger demographics. I don’t particularly think that the presence of older poets is domineering or in any way a bad thing though, I accept all the help I can from more experienced people!

4. What is your daily writing routine?

Whilst I do make time to write I don’t think I have so much of a routine. I don’t treat it as a chore, I make sure I allow myself time to write before work and when I get free time on evenings, but my phone is filled with notes I’ve written because I’ve thought of something on the go.

5. What motivates you to write?
Whenever I read poetry that I really connect with, I feel that gut-wrenching soul ache, or I feel like I’ve been seen in a crowd, as though I’ve been recognised and I’m not alone. The idea that I can have that kind of affect on people through my writing is what drives me.

6. What is your work ethic?

The more you write the more you write. ALSO The more you read the more you write! If you’re feeling writers block the best medicine is to read!

7. How do the writers you read when you were young influence you today?

When I was younger I used to read a lot of easily-consumable poetry like Michael Faudet and Rupi Kaur. I think that was a great doorway into the world of poetry, and it definitely still influences me in that I feel poetry should have a bold statement to it, but I felt as I matured I learned to be patient with my poems and take more time to expand on points.

8. Who of today’s writers do you admire the most and why?

I really adore Cheryl Pois’ “Oysterlight” because it contains some of the most gently beautiful imagery I have come across in a long time. I have read that book over and over, lent it to girlfriends, screenshott’ed pages to send to my mom, all sorts. I really admire the way she writes such powerful poetry using such soft language. Reading her book is like being bowled over by a butterfly wing. She is also such a lovely person!

(I deleted Q9 I felt it was covered in Q5)

9. What would you say to someone who asked you “How do you become a writer?”

Just write. Hone your craft. Read as much as you can. Join writing workshops where you can discuss your work and get feedback. Go to poetry nights and make like-minded friends; that’s half the fun!

11. Tell me about the writing projects you have on at the moment.

I’m currently working on my manuscript for my own collection. I love to make little art/poetry zines by hand which I sell on my etsy shop and I also make small trinkets like bookmarks, lockets and frames. I’m going to apply for the Staffordshire Laureateship in 2019 too so it’s going to be a busy year!

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