Wombwell Rainbow Interviews: Martin Appleby


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.

Martin Appleby

is a punk, poet, vegetarian, cider drinker and editor of Paper and Ink Literary Zine from Hastings, England. Follow on Facebook/Instagram/Twitter @paperandinkzine

The Interview

1. What inspired you  to write poetry?

Women. Quite simply. The first poem I ever wrote was as a love struck teenager about a girl I had a crush on but was too afraid to tell. Then when I started writing poetry again in my twenties it was drunken ramblings scrawled in a notebook after a break up. It wasn’t until my late twenties that, for the first time, I wrote a poem that wasn’t about a woman.

2. Who introduced you to poetry?

Henry Charles Bukowski Jr. His words opened my eyes to a whole new world. Poetry was no longer just the flowery, pretentious nonsense they had tried to teach me in school. It was simple, honest, raw, brutal, beautiful and working class. It was a gateway drug that lead me to discovering an underground wonderland of beats, outlaws and outsiders.

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

It is not something I have thought about too much. I guess the older you are, the more shit you have seen, the more life experience you have to draw from, and the more equipped you are to articulate it? I don’t know, maybe you have to be a certain age before you start to appreciate poetry.

4. What is your daily writing routine?

I fucking wish I had a daily writing routine. I write when I feel like it, when I feel that I have something to say. Sometimes that may be two or three poems in a day, sometimes that may be two or three in a month.

5. What motivates you to write?

That is a very good question. I guess all writing comes down to ego doesn’t it? The feeling that whatever you have to say is so important that it needs to be written down. Documented. Recorded. For posterity or publication, it’s all just ego. I don’t have any children and don’t plan to have any, so I like the idea that my poems will live on after I’m gone. A piece of me that will survive  long after my body packs up.

6. What is your work ethic?

I run a submission based literary magazine, so I am always working on the next issue. So, if I am not writing poetry, I am at the very least reading it. I also publish the odd poetry collection, the latest one being Too Many Drinks Ago by my friend John D Robinson. I am always  working on something. It’s what keeps me sane.

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

I still love Bukowski’s writing, and whilst I don’t necessarily agree with some of the things that he wrote about – he had some problematic views which have been well documented – his writing will always stand out to me as a beacon of excellence, and continue to inspire me. As a kid I used to read things like Goosebumps and Star Wars novels , and whilst I enjoy the odd horror and sci-fi novel, I don’t think they particularly inform the stuff I write today.

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

I admire anyone who takes action. Anyone who doesn’t wait around for things to happen to them, but makes them happen. Anyone who has the fortitude to put their truth out into the world to be judged by total strangers.

1. Why do you write?

I like telling stories. I love the rush, the exhilaration, and the sense of accomplishment when it all comes together – when you’ve written the perfect sentence, or poem – when everything ties together in a neat little knot. Plus, how else am I supposed to tell people about all of the stupid shit I have done in my life? Start a fucking podcast or YouTube channel like very other brainless idiot these days?

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

One thing that I hate more than anything is people who describe themselves as “aspiring” writers/poets. It’s bullshit. Don’t aspire, be. Don’t try, do. Start typing.

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

I started writing a novel in 2015 which I am yet to finish the first draft of. I would like to finish it before I die, but at the moment I’d say the chance of that is 50/50. I am also working on Issue 14 of my literary magazine, Paper and Ink – the theme is missed connections and  features a fantastic line up of writers, poets and artists from all over the world and all walks of

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