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.
is an American poet whose work emphasizes emotional integrity and social justice. She is the author of several eBooks including, Learning from Pompeii, Coffee for Neanderthals, Disgracing Lady Justice and others, available on smashwords.com and its affiliates.Chapbook: Ebola (West Chester University Poetry Center, 2014)
1. What inspired you to write poetry?
Observations of the world around me, including the emotional impact of our experiences.
2. Who introduced you to poetry?
Mostly my mom, who is an artist, teacher, painter, writer. My dad also loved poetry and was, in fact, probably my biggest supporter besides my husband.
3. How aware were you of the dominating presence of older poets?
My parents introduced me to all things literature. We also attended a lot of cultural events, such as a “Shakespeare in the Park” series and many museums and intellectual events. When you are exposed to these avenues as a young child, they become a part of you and overflow into your writing.
4. What is your daily writing routine?
I’m told I’m supposed to have one of those. 🙂
5. What motivates you to write?
Social justice issues are a huge motivation for me, and unfortunately the world always seems ripe with new injustices. I also use a term “emotional integrity” to describe some of the impetus behind my work, because I think reading and writing can help us to detangle our sometimes messy, emotional processes.
6. What is your work ethic?
I consider myself a hard worker, and I usually have several projects going. But as a homemaker and mother of two young boys, I’m not always in a position to be writing.
7. How do the writers you read when you were young influence you today?
I still love Robert Frost, Emily Dickinson, Robert Louis Stevenson, Longfellow. I aspire to write well and in a lasting way, and in that way I believe they influence me.
8. Who of today’s writers do you admire the most and why?
Carmel Mawle, founder of Writing for Peace and editor of Dove Tales gave me an opportunity no other editor has afforded me. She not only published a few of my poems after I had had many years of rejections, but also became a friend who I have been able to email with from time-to-time, and has made time for aspiring writers in a way that the usual publishing world just won’t.
Rick Lupert, writer and founder at Poetry Super Highway uses his website and his own gifts to attempt to connect other poets online. He also runs a weekly podcast and invites live readings. It’s nice to see modern poets reaching out to use the technology online to connect others. (I see that in you, too, Mr. Brookes. And, again, thank you so much for your welcoming kindness to other writers!) We have such a rejection-filled industry, it’s refreshing to see that.
Mark Coker, founder of Smashwords.com started his e-book website because of his frustration with the traditional publishing world. When other methods of publishing have proven unsuccessful, it has been a great joy to be able to share my e-chapbooks via Smashwords instead.
9. Why do you write, as opposed to doing anything else?
Because I don’t have other skills! 😉 Actually, I just enjoy the fluid medium of writing.
10. What would you say to someone who asked you “How do you become a writer?”
Pick up a pencil. Know when to throw out the bad stuff. Don’t give up when you get rejected.
11. Tell me about the writing projects you have on at the moment.
All of my e-chapbooks are available on Smashwords.com and my most recent one was titled “Silhouettes” (2019). It’s a compilation of poetry I wrote after my Dad died of congestive heart failure in 2018. The link is here: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/923089
However, my most recent chapbook manuscript is titled, “Vision, and Other Things We Hide From” and it includes many previously published individual pieces, along with some never before published poems. It is currently out for consideration. It is my life goal to have a full book-length manuscript published by a real publisher.