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.
According to Smashwords
“Born in northern California, Tara has traveled and lived in Europe, the United Kingdom and the western United States.
Her writing focuses on social and relationship issues such as isolation, loneliness, marginalization, fear, terror, love and death. She writes in a contemporary, free verse manner. Her poems have been featured in print and on numerous poetry sites including OCCULUM, Rasputin, Midnight Lane Gallery, Uut, Idle Ink, The Cabinet of Heed, Spelk, Anti-Heroin Chic, Social Justice Poetry, Spilling Cocoa on Martin Amis, Wanton Fuckery, The Poet Community, Poems and Poetry and more.
Her varied influences include the Beat Poets including Lew Welch and Ginsberg, as well as Montaigne, Rumi, Baudelaire, Sexton, William Carlos Williams, Lucretius, Shakespeare, Elliot, Wolfe, Yeats, Heaney, Patti Smith, Blake, Panayotopoulos, and Akhmatova. In addition to poetry, she writes flash fiction, humor, critique and film treatments.”
1. What inspires you to write poetry?
My work is the culmination of my thoughts, my reactions so to speak, of what is going on in both my mind and the world. The format of free verse poetry is a creative release and an affirmation of my principals and ideals as well as my dreams. All are a challenge, a puzzle, a release, an accomplishment.
Importantly I have to thank all the editors I have had contact with these past few years and the journals and sites who have accepted my poems for publication. The generosity of their Editor’s time and feedback on my work is integral to my creative process.
2. Who introduced you to poetry?
Certainly I read poems as a child and throughout my schooling. Both my parents read a lot to me and my siblings when we were children. However it really was when I hit high school and had an AP class in Great British Writers that I began my study of poems as a form. Throw in my own interest and pursuit of the great historical poets of literature and my exposure to the beat poets (as I grew up by San Francisco) and here I am!
3. How aware were you of the dominating presence of older poets?
Established poets are a constant presence and source of continual inspiration for me. I experience considerable joy and a sense of confirmation in the beauty of the human soul when I read and re-read the work of any and all poets. I especially adore Akhmatova and Lew Welch and have a affinity for Baudelaire, Heaney, Pound, Elliot, Neruda, Rilke, Sexton, Ginsburg, Kerouac and Ferlinghetti.
4. What is your daily writing routine?
In general, I tend to write best late in the evening or overnight. As I am also working towards an MFA, I tend to go back and forth between research and notes for my MFA, reading for pleasure and drafts for poems. That being said, I am not a “routine” person. At times I write profusely and in great volume. Then I can go weeks without producing anything. I always try to focus on structure, cadence and atmosphere, so I need to be in the right “mind set”. Some days I do not feel anything to write, others I write all day and night!
5. How do the writers you read when you were young influence you today?
I am always continuing my “education” in literature. That being said I can often clearly remember the emotional resonance a particular piece may have had on me when I first read it. I read at least three hours a day, often more. Everything I read can be an influence/inspiration to me. Often I begin with a topic which in turn leads to research and further reading. Current issues and affairs always influence me, as does how history is interpreted, especially historical patterns.
6. Who of today’s writers do you admire the most and why?
I try to read as much as I am able in the current poetry scene. Specifically I admire the work of Kristin Garth, Kenneth Bateman, Elizabeth Horan, Rus Khumutoff, Abigail Pearson, Nadia Gerassimenko, Greta Bellamacina and Scarlett Sabet.
7. Why do you write, as opposed to doing anything else?
I write AND do a whole bunch of “else”! I hike, horseback ride, paint, cook, sew, do beadwork, volunteer, read, journal and more. I have an interest in animal welfare issues, the slow food movement, taphophilia, art, travel, vino culture, music, gardening and environmental matters. I love being out of doors and I really enjoy my solitude.
8. What would you say to someone who asks you “How do you become a writer?”
Go get a pen and some paper and…
11. Tell me about the writing projects you have on at the moment.
I am currently working on my third chapbook, working title Savage Creatures, as well as a book of trilogy poems. I have an affinity for the three part trilogy format. One of my recent trilogy pieces, “The Disenfranchised Book of the Dead”, is in the Winter 2018/19 issue of Deracine. My “Bruges Trilogy”, inspired by the tragic Flemish poet Jotie T’Hooft, was published last year in the compilation The Unrest: The Journey From The Personal to The Political. I am also releasing soon a humorous book of poems “written” by my cats called Where Is Our Other Cat Mom?