Welcome to my blog interviews with novelists, poets, short story authors, scriptwriters, biographers, agents, publishers and more. Today’s is with poet Julie Clark. A list of interviewees (blogged and scheduled) can be found here. If you like what you read, please do go and investigate further.
Morgen: Hello, Julie. Please tell us something about yourself, and how you came to be a writer.
Julie: Hello. Well, I first started writing poetry when I was 17 when I moved away from my parents’ house to do a live in job, it was quite a big thing for me and I was rather nervous, but that night the job took us to a concert of Adrian Snell who is a Christian. The concert was very good and the last song got inside my heart and soul, and I went back to my room and played the song again. Then from my mind I heard words, just a sentence at first but they would not stop so I decided to write them down and my first poem was born.
Morgen: Do you write poetry to form or as it come? If to form, what are your favourites? Are some easier than others?
Julie: My poetry comes as I write it and it usually ends up as 4 lines to a verse.
Morgen: Do you generally write rhyming or free verse?
Julie: I mainly write free verse but just lately have been getting in to rhyming poetry.
Morgen: What have you had published to-date?
Julie: I have one book to date called journey into hope.
Morgen: Have you had any rejections? If so, how do you deal with them?
Julie: Not in my books but when I have entered my poetry for different reasons. I found this slightly disheartening but I have to work on my grammar skills.
Morgen: Do you go to poetry slams?
Julie: No I don’t not even sure what they are.
Morgen: Apparently like open mic nights but quicker? I’ve not been to any as I don’t write or read poetry. Are your books available as eBooks? How involved were you in that process?
Julie: Yes I have an e book but my publisher did it all as part of the publishing package.
Morgen: Do you think eBooks will change poetry?
Julie: Maybe it makes it easier to down load them but I must say I do like the feel of a proper book.
Morgen: Most people do. What / who do you read?
Julie: I read a bit of both although I don’t read lots. I tend to read poetry books and Christian books.
Morgen: How much of the marketing do you do for your published works or indeed for yourself as a ‘brand’?
Julie: I tend to market my book through Facebook and my website www.freewebs.com/journeyintohope.
Also local bookshops have taken it and sold a few.
Morgen: Congratulations. Do you have a favourite of your poems or topic to write about?
Julie: I write mainly about my faith and how much it’s got me through difficult times my Love for God and for my Christian family.
Morgen: Do you show / read your poems to anyone before you submit?
Julie: No, but I need to I need to get someone to edit my poems for grammar.
Morgen: I have an online poetry writing group (http://poetrywritinggroup.wordpress.com/submissions and linked Facebook group) where I welcome poems for critique but they’re posted on the blog so would count as published which some publishers and competitions won’t allow. What are you working on at the moment / next?
Julie: A friend and I are considering doing a book / eBook on handling and understanding grief.
Morgen: Do you ever suffer from writer’s block?
Julie: No I don’t get writer’s block because the poetry flows out of everyday situations.
Morgen: Are there any tips you could give to someone wishing to write poetry?
Julie: Just relax and share your feelings with people don’t be afraid of how people react its there to help you at the end of the day.
Morgen: Do you write any fiction, non-fiction or short stories?
Julie: Not really. I used to when I was a teenager but not anymore.
Morgen: Do you do a lot of editing of your poems or do you find that as time goes on your writing is more fully-formed?
Julie: No I don’t really edit my poems; they come from feelings at the time so they are as they are.
Morgen: I used to write a lot of 60-word stories and found the more I wrote the closer they came out to the word count. It’s obviously not a direct comparison but do you find your poems come out at similar lengths, or do they really vary.
Julie: Yes they tend to be 4 or 5 verses long unless I’m telling a story then it is longer.
Morgen: Do you have to do much research?
Julie: No, they come from within.
Morgen: Do you have pieces of work that you think will never see light of day?
Julie: Not really. I want to use them all.
Morgen: I feel like that about my short stories. What’s your favourite / least favourite aspect of your writing life? Has anything surprised you?
Julie: I love getting my feelings out and being able to encourage other people who are struggling with similar situation or rejoicing also.
Morgen: What advice would you give aspiring poets?
Julie: Just relax and enjoy what you are doing try to share on blogs and websites etc.
Morgen: Is there a word, phrase or quote you like?
Julie: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
Morgen: What do you do when you’re not writing?
Julie: I am a full-time mum and wife. I also love aromatherapy.
Morgen: Are there any writing-related websites and/or books that you find useful?
Morgen: Thank you, Julie.
I then invited Julie to include one of her poems and she chose ‘Open your heart’…
Open your heart
To feel my love.
Open your eyes
To see my light
Open your ears
To hear my words
Open your hand
To receive what I give
Take up your book
And walk with me
Stretch out your hand
And follow me
You are my body
You are my bride
In my love
And more about her book…
My book is a journey into hope, its about someone being on their own and being fine then they start to question what life is all about then God calls them then their response and heavens response then walking in faith, there are seven sections so it can be read as a journey of discovery or just dipped into at anytime.
Julie’s website is http://www.freewebs.com/journeyintohope.
If you are reading this and you write, in whatever genre, and are thinking “ooh, I’d like to do this” then you can… just email me and I’ll send you the information. They do now (January 2013) carry a fee (£10 / €12.50 / $15) for the new interviews on the mixed blog but everything else (see Opportunities on the main blog) is free.
Alternatively, if you’d like a free Q&A-only interview, I now have this blog, https://morgensauthorinterviews.wordpress.com, on which I’ve rerun the original interviews posted here then posted new interviews which I then reblog here. These interviews are Q&A only, so I don’t add in my comments but they do get exposure on both sites.
If you go for the interview, it’s very simple; I send you a questionnaire (I have them for novelists, short story authors, children’s authors, non-fiction authors, and poets). You complete the questions, and I let you know when it’s going to go live. Before it does so, I add in comments as if we’re chatting, and then they get posted. When that’s done, I email you with the link so you can share it with your corner of the literary world. And if you have a writing-related blog / podcast and would like to interview me… let me know.
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