Wombwell Rainbow Interviews: Simon Warwick Beresford

Simon Warwick Beresford

was born, grew up and lives in the East Midlands of England but plans on moving to Scotland soon. He went to University in Luton, where he studied BA(hons) Advertising & Marketing Communications and achieved a 2:1.
When he’s not writing (and sometimes when he is), Simon works as a Care Team Leader.

The Interview

  1. When and why did you start writing poetry?

When I was 11, we had to write a poem for harvest festival, for school. My poem was read out by the Teacher, Mr Sutcliffe and it made everyone laugh. It was s’posed to be funny so that was a good start. One girl, Gemma was in absolute hysterics. I enjoyed the positive attention so that’s why I decided to become a Poet. So really it’s Mr Sutcliffe’s and Gemma’s fault.

2. Who introduced you to poetry?

Mr Sutcliffe was the first person to get me to write some but I had already read lots before that. Mostly Dr. Seuss books from the town library. So I guess my Parents, who took me there.

3. How aware are and were you of the dominating presence of older poets traditional and contemporary?

Most of the best known poets are dead if that’s what you mean but that’s okay I’ll be dead one day too. Hope I’m well known before then, of course.

4. What is your daily writing routine?

Ha! I wouldn’t claim to write daily. Sure sometimes I’ll write 3+ poems in a day. Maybe even for a few days in a row. Other times it might be once a week or even less. As for routine, I write when I have the mood, the time and the inspiration! So not really any routine. I write at home, I write at work, I write when walking or on the bus or a train…

5. What subjects motivate you to write?

Well I think I’m best known for my narrative horror poems and I guess reading and watching horror has given me plenty of ideas over the years. Of course I can be inspired by all kinds of things though. A pretty girl, a flower, a sunset… Any of that usual Poet stuff, plus some quite random shit.

6. What is your work ethic?

An interesting question containing two of my least favourite words. I guess it’s something along the lines of: I’ve not written for a while, so I guess I should. I give myself vague deadlines for when I want a book done by and an idea of how long I want that book to be and then I get on with it at a suitable pace and of course life throws other things at me but I can usually find time to poem when I’m not too stressed.

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

All our experiences influence who we are and thus what we do.  Dr. Seuss certainly gave me a love of rhythm and rhyme.

I s’pose I was mostly into fantasy books as a child and you’ll see fantasy elements in many of my poems.

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

S. Alessandro Martinez because his horror poems are very good, I’m glad to say they’re also very different to mine, and his horror novel Helminth is a Lovecraftian masterpiece! He’s clearly read (and maybe watched) a lot because he really knows the horror genre.

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

I think I have a natural talent for poetry, well polished after many years practice, and a desire to be famous, for something worth being famous for. It’s the gift I have, that I’ve chosen to share because I think I’d do worse if I chose something else like drawing or singing. I enjoy those two examples but I’m better at the poetry. So yeah, I guess it’s the best way for me to show off.

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

Read a lot, write a lot.

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

I don’t like to give away too much before release. WIP 1 is a book of romantic poetry (some of it erotic). So that’s rather different to my previous works. WIP 2 will be book 4 of my series, Poetry Is Twisted, Don’t Trust Her, so that will be mostly horror poems but as with the other books in that series, some non-horror stuff too. I hope to have them both out next year (2022) or maybe even late this year. November at the earliest.

My Amazon page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Simon-Warwick-Beresford/e/B076VNFG8L

My Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/SimonWarwickBeresford

My Twitter: https://twitter.com/AliceLBronte

My current books in the order they were published:

FASCINATE Twisted Poems For The Depraved   (Poetry Is Twisted, Don’t Trust Her book 1)

My Little Black Distress   (Poetry Is Twisted, Don’t Trust Her book 2)

Ghost City

Extinction Imminent   (Poetry Is Twisted, Don’t Trust Her book 3)

12. What fascinates you about horror writing?

O’ the old fascinating joke, lol. Um, I like my Poetry to leave an impact, be memorable and not be boring, and horror is both rare in poetry and evokes emotions like fear and disgust which helps them to be impactful and more easily remembered. Plus I just like horror for the usual reason of enjoying fear in a safe environment.

13. How did you decide on the order of poems in “Extinction Imminent”?

Um I think they’re mostly in the order I wrote them. I don’t entirely remember. I try to start and end my books with really good poems and then some more really good ones near the middle and then really good poems throughout the rest of the book too. Ha! No, seriously some poems will tell me where they want to be but most of them just go wherever. Sometimes I put poems near each other because they have similarities and sometimes I spread them out throughout a book for the same reason. I’m rather heart over head. I feel what’s “right” rather than having some kind of system. FASCINATE required the most thought as to the poems order because with that one, most of the poems were already written before I decided to create the collection.

14. How important is form to you in your poetry?

Most of my poems rhyme. That’s about as much thought as I put into structure really, usually. I don’t like decide a rhyme scheme in advance of writing a poem or anything. I just have feelings about how any particular poem should sound/flow. Though I have written a smattering of Haikus and obviously they have a strict form but I don’t have much respect for that form to be honest because it’s a lot like painting by numbers. Can you count syllables? Good, you can Haiku.

15. Why is Martinez’s poetry “very Good”?

His poems in his book ‘Dreams of Decay’ read like they were written for children but the subject matter is very dark. I enjoy that contrast. Now someone could say similar about my poems but mine are more edgy. Martinez doesn’t do rape scenes for example (from what I’ve seen /  remember) his horror on average is more disquieting, less what the fuck!? They feel more traditional. Where as mine whilst perhaps written in a style somewhat belonging to the romantic period (Emily Brontë has had her influence) contain themes and feeling much more recent. The for children feeling of his poems comes from fairy tales, mine is more from Seuss!

16. What do want the reader to leave with once they have read “Extinction Imminent?

Um a desire to buy more of my books but seriously and Extinction Imminent is quite serious by my standards and some of the horror in it is quite real, I want the reader of that book to be shook into taking Climate Change more seriously. It’s message is, do something or we’re all going to die!

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