Wombwell Rainbow Interviews: Z D Dicks

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.

malcontent

Z D Dicks

is a poet who writes about the everyday, often overlooked, facets of life and weaves rich imagery, fusing an adept handling of form with experimental inventiveness. His first collection ‘Malcontent’ has been described as stimulating, provocative and a red bull of a read. This collection is out on the 21st March 2019 and will be available to order from Amazon.

The Interview

  1. When and why did you start writing poetry?

I started writing poetry pretty early on, can still remember the first was an acrostic. This was as a task, but I dabbled into my teens where the angst drove it, as it does many. One teacher introduced me to Hughes, that catalysed my writing and I’m forever thankful for it. I write to express a view of the world and to deliver astute observations, I love layering thick images to spatter in a readers mind and make connections that may not have occurred to them, through the use of conceptual blends.

1.1. What is a “conceptual blend”?

Taking two inputs, say a balloon and an apple and placing them in a blend space to create an image, for example, the apple was a balloon to highlight the shared features, in this case roundness but a better example would be a surgeon and a butcher as a good blend relies on tension of the differences of input spaces, for example, the surgeon was a butcher. Input one and two deal with flesh, both skilled but the tension comes in the differences, living and dead flesh plus the nature of the tools used.

1.2. Why was Hughes a catalyst?

The imagery was key, the nature poems and personification of animals spoke to me and inspired a deeper love of observing the world.

1.3. How did they speak to you?

I think it was relationship between mans interaction with nature and the way humans deal with things but the natural world is simpler, for example, the idea of holiday is a stressful affair but if an animal wants to relax it just does. The imagery and layers work for me.

2. Did you feel the weight of other poets writings bearing down on you?

Very aware of traditional poets, often the first poems read are by long dead poets. Contemporary poets have a huge influence as there feels like a need to be overly ‘accessible’. Personally, on the way I write, I prefer language to be rich and complex.

3. Whom of today’s writers do you admire the most and why?

There are many talented writers but a few notable poets are Nigel McCloughlin, for the precision, Anna Saunders, for the way she examines mythology and Jaqueline Saphra, as I enjoy the way she uses space on the page.

4. Why do you write, as opposed to doing anything else?

I do other things as well, I used to paint, and be quite physically active. I can write anywhere, at anytime. If I have pen and paper or my phone I can write poetry. Among other things, observing the world through writing helps me appreciate small moments.

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

Just write and you are a writer, you may be good or bad, just write. To develop any skill takes time. I must have written thousands of bad poems before the ‘click’ went on in my head and it made sense. As with anything, just enjoy the process.

6. Tell me about writing projects you are involved in at the moment.

I’m currently planning, this years Gloucester Poetry Festival, to showcase talent from all over the UK, but on more immediate level I have been corresponding with Anna Saunders and we have been writing a poem a day, responding to each other’s work, which has been an absolute pleasure. I’ve been spoiled with fresh, exquisitely written poetry. Long may it continue.

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