Wombwell Rainbow Interviews: Samantha Merz

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.
Fevers

Fevers of the Mind Poetry Digest Issue 2: In Memoriam. Samantha’s Volcanoes Erupt poem is included.

Samantha Merz

Samantha’s Passion Seeker poem was published in Lean In: A Collection of Canadian Poetry by Polar Expressions Publishing in 2018. Samantha’s Queen Carola’s Parotia on the Pergola, Rusty Red Roads, Surrounded by Vibrant Sun Conures, Girl On The Green, Sultry July, Hyper-Pigmented Psychedelia, Monster Truck, Paragon Paradise, Polvo poems have been published online on Grey Thoughts in 2019. Samantha’s Volcanoes Erupt poem was published in Fevers of the Mind Poetry Digest Issue 2: In Memoriam, 2019.

Links to websites:
Twitter: @sambcmerz
Instagram: @marblemessages

The Interview

1. What inspired you to write poetry?

I was inspired to write poetry because I enjoy piecing together words or phrases to create a larger body of work or even haikus. When I would write articles, I would have to spend extra time doing research and sourcing out creative commons photos. I used to write song lyrics and even record them and set them to music. I even tried making a few music videos. However, I find writing poetry comes naturally to me. The first poem I wrote, Passion Seeker, was only twelve lines and was sitting in my drafts for a while. Eventually, I found out about Polar Expression’s Publishing Summer Poetry Contest and decided to submit it. I was thrilled to find out they wanted to publish it.

2. Who introduced you to poetry?

I was introduced to poetry in elementary school, probably when I was in grade five by my favourite teacher. I remember learning about different types of poems such as free verse, blank verse, sonnets and limericks. At the time, I was also learning about William Shakespeare and his play, Macbeth.

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

I was somewhat aware of the dominating presence of older poets. The legacies of Walt Whitman, Sylvia Plath, Robert Frost, Allen Ginsberg and Mary Oliver continue to influence society and I admire their work.

4. What is your daily writing routine?

I don’t write poetry everyday but I do jot down notes. Sometimes I sit at my laptop to complete a poem but I usually need to be inspired to start writing.

5. What motivates you to write?

My friends and family encourage me to continue writing. They like reading my poetry and they enjoy reading my articles. I also appreciate hearing from other people that I haven’t met in person that they enjoy reading my work.

6. What is your work ethic?

My work ethic is inconsistent, especially when it comes to writing poetry. It’s a great feeling when I have submitted a poem and it is received well.

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

The writers that I read when I was young influence me today because there is some overlap in terms of topics I touch on in my poetry. I would mainly read young adult fiction novels that would discuss teen angst, friendships, family, relationships and musings.

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

There are so many writers today that I admire due to the presence of social media and the growth of the writing community. I enjoy reading poetry by Atticus, Lana Del Rey, Carla Sofia Ferreira, Greg Santos and many others. I love reading Liscombe’s Faerie Tales: Volume 1 by Emma Windsor-Liscombe. There are so many memorable characters in the eight eerie stories. I love reading it during the summer.

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

I write because it’s a strength of mine. I know how to express myself with written words. I struggle with verbal communication, articulating my ideas and sharing my feelings. It’s something I can pick up and put down and carry out by myself. I am able to share my work with others and get feedback.

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

I would reply that it happens the moment you write something down. I find writing therapeutic. You don’t have to show anyone else your work, become published or win awards. It depends what you want out of your writing and if you have any aspirations. When I was a freelance article writer, some ideas were rejected and I would have to make a few edits before they would be published. Sometimes you have to put in more time and effort into your work.

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

I have many drafts that I still need to complete and submit for publication. Maybe I will do some audio recordings. One day, I would love to self-publish a collection of poetry and possibly add illustrations. I have been talking with a close friend about a possible collaboration involving writing and art
.

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