Press Profiles - Meet the Writer

Press Profiles a place we like to showcase artists who have worked with us in one way or another. Whether it be contributing to one of our anthology opportunities or hiring us to help breathe life into their literary works. Here you will learn a little more about the artist and where you can find more of their work. Many of them have been published elsewhere in magazines, print anthologies, online publications, reviews, and more.

Many publishers ask for literary work that is unpublished and they require exclusive rights to said work. This is not so with Quillkeepers Press, LLC. We encourage all writers to do their best to get their work into as many hands as possible. As writers ourselves, we understand how hard the publishing market can be. Therefor, we encourage previously published work (so long as the previous publisher allows it) submissions for our anthologies.

If you are interested in contributing to one of our anthologies, you can check out our opportunities here.

If you have previously worked with us and would like to be featured here with Press Profiles, please contact us.

Nicole Haswell

Tell us a little about yourself:

My name is Nicole, and I’m from El Paso, Texas. If you’ve never heard of it, it’s an awesome city in far west Texas right on the border of Mexico and New Mexico. It’s a really unique and beautiful city that I’m proud to have grown up in. I am half Hispanic, so the culture is something my family is very rich in. I’m a huge Bookworm, hence my IG handle. I actually collect antique and rare text books. I just love how they smell, and how historically books were a gift that held such value that they were treasured and often passed down. I love seeing the dedications in the covers. I live with my fiancé and my hairy westie dog whom I love immensely! They both bring love, laughter and light to my life every single day. When I’m not writing, I love to cook, bake, read, and explore new places.


Who or what inspires your writing?

My inspiration is primarily my life and experiences, but the reason I began publishing and putting work into the world was because of my Grandma Vivian. She was an amazing human being who wrote inspirational poetry and published work based on her life and belief in a higher power. She authored several books, ran a store, ran a dairy farm, ran a school, loved, lived, hoped, and created an extraordinary family. Her spirit was truly one of a kind. My subject matter focuses more on mental health, social issues, relationships, and deep emotional situations. I believe in the honesty of those things and put it out there as transparently as I can. I’m an organic writer, so every piece is something I’ve felt deeply. I’m not a prompt writer or one that would be considered a creative writer. Poetry has been my diary since I was probably around 13 years old. It saved me. It was a safe place to let my anger, frustration, sadness, depression and anxiety out. It was the medium by which I could feel normal, when, as an empath I felt anything but.


What are your writing goals for 2021?

For 2021, I’d really love to see some of my work published in other places. Anthologies, magazines, etc. It was such a rewarding experience to publish my own collections, but it’s something entirely different for outside publications to see your work and recognize its impact and value. I was able to get a taste of that by being featured in Qullkeepers’ anthologies as well as one from Ink Gladiators, but I’d be so happy to expound on that and see how far that can go. I’d also like to explore more of who I am now. I’ve come so far in my own healing and growth, my mind set is different, and I think there are things I haven’t unearthed in myself that can be reflected in my work.


What are your hobbies outside of writing?

I really love photography! I enjoy taking pictures of unique places and capturing different things on my travels. It’s something I’d really like to do more of. I also love to travel and see new places.


Previous publishing plug:

You can purchase my books on Amazon.com throughly the link in my IG bio. I am the author of three of my own collections. They are: “A Shadowfall Redemption”, “Dark Butterfly: Chaos in Poetry”, and “Onward, Bright Arrow”. I was also featured in “Soon A New Day” by Quillkeeper’s Press and “The Fall and Rise of Chimeras” by Ink Gladiators Press. You can find me on instagram @bookwormpoet


Anchal Singh

Tell us a little about yourself:

Anchal Singh is a blogger, writer and poetess who reflects different aspects of life through her writings. She was born and brought up in India in a joint family. She believes that be it anything, either you should give it all, or you shouldn't care at all. There's nothing in between. She says, you cannot change your life, but you can change the way you live and that will surely change your life. Her motto is to do something for the mankind and humanity. During her free time, she likes to cook, make paintings and mostly find new hobbies and skills to learn. She wants to express her feelings through her words

"I am currently 16 years old. To date, I have worked in 27+ anthology books,3 e-books, various International magazines and 2 Indian magazines.

I have also represented India in Nigeria, Africa as a world change maker during the covid-19 pandemic. Only 3 people were selected and i was the youngest and only Indian citizen to represent India. I had also been a part of various organisations/NGO such as Akanksha Charitable Trust,Taare Zameen Foundation, Muskaan dreams and Ivolunteer. And, with the help of these organisations I worked for the betterment of society.

I want to contribute to this world as much as I can. I want to be engaged in social work, I was part of various NGO's, which is working for betterment of environment and education. And the happiness and contentment which I've got from there, is unexplainable through words. Also, I am a quick learner and I do believe in learning from my mistakes so that I can never repeat them"


How would you classify your writing style?

As a writer, I don't have a specific topic which is the only one I write about, I do write on the topics what I like to, what I believe in, not to please someone and fake it out. As, I said earlier that I want to make my readers feel the words and depth of the sentence, I cannot be so polite and write only good things and it gives you nothing but only false hopes and promises. If you ask me something, there are chances you may think I am rude or arrogant but there's nothing like that. I give you honest answer. ? I write ever directly from my heart. I write because I want to pen down my emotions through my words. I write what I feel, and how I have dealt with something. I write for you, I write for the world and I write to make an impact in someone's life.


Describe your writing process:

My ultimate goal is to always be realistic as much as possible. I want to make connection with my readers, I want them to feel every word. I want to show the world the beauty that appears in my mind through a sentence. The reason is that I write, not for myself, but for my people, my readers who devote their time to read my work. And, in this process; I make sure that every one who reads me, understands me right in the first reading and no one should feel the need to reach out for a dictionary.


What would you like to be remembered for?

I would like to be remembered as a good human being, a person who makes everyone smile even when a person is going through a very tough phase. I want to be remembered as a person who always spreads love and happiness everywhere. Because I think our world has turned into an emotionless place and we are gradually behaving like bots and machines. And I think this can be done not by taking things from our people, our nature but by giving others a reason to feel good about themselves. Spread love, positivity and happiness because it is getting rare. Be kind to each other.


Where can readers find more of your work?

You can connect me on instagram: @anchal.singh18.

Lisa Owens

Tell us a little about yourself:

My name is Lisa and I’m an emerging poet from St. Louis, Missouri. I’m happiest when curled up in the wee hours of the morning with a steamy cup of coffee as I work on a new poem, surrounded by trees, birdsong and crisp air as I walk my 8 miles a day, immersed in other cultures (particularly British/Irish/Scottish), enjoying good conversation with friends and a Guinness in a lively pub or snuggled on the couch with my littles at the end of a long day.

Who are your literary heroes?

I love the works of Mary Oliver, Deborah Harkness (All Souls Series) and Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat Pray Love). Connection to nature, self and superb imagery writing style is what draws me to these writers and inspires me in my own work.

What would you like to be remembered for? (doesn't have to be literary based)

I would like to be remembered for being an authentic and kind person. For always striving to reach for my dreams while inspiring others to pursue their own. In a literary sense, I would like to be remembered for creating works that inspire, instill strength or empower a reader.

What advice would you give to a new writer?

It sounds so simple but my advice would be to write every day. This can be easier said than done but once it becomes a routine the ideas and words begin to flow. Also, don’t be discouraged by rejections. Believe that your work is worthy, it just has to find the right home. Lastly, keep your writing goals in mind - write them down, make a vision board, anything to help you keep focused on those goals and keep pushing onward.

Where can readers find you (Social accounts, blogs, websites, etc.)?

Instagram at @lisa.marie_81.

R.H. Alexander

Tell us a little about yourself:

I have been writing poetry most all my life, with a long hiatus while I wrote fiction, edited a newspaper and was a manufacturer's representative while doing my part to provide for my family. There is a four generation legacy of poets and educators in my family tree, so you might say I didn't have a choice. I have spent a lot of my lifetime in the wild and by that proxy have compiled a pretty good layman's knowledge of the wild things and their world and they have colored and inspired a lot of my work.


When did you start writing? How do you think your writing has evolved?

I wrote my first poems when I was six. In a tote somewhere buried in a bunch of family keepsake papers, I think they still exist. One grandmother was a poet, another a teacher in a rural one room schoolhouse. One grandfather was a well known Texas raconteur and my maternal great grandfather wrote verse as well. So you might say I had no choice in the matter. I think my writing has evolved considerably, particularly in the last ten years or so, and intensively in the last 6 since retiring from the workaday world. I have had so much more time to read and study, to discover great poets I had not crossed paths with, to study craft and get past the idea that poems were built of sacred stones that shouldn't be touched because they land mortared in place. So wrong! Hearing Carolyn Fourche talk about cutting lines of a poem apart and shuffling those pieces around to help them find their message just stunned me. I mean she printed them and then scissored them into single strips of one line each and mixed them about to find the better fit. To tell the story correctly. it made me realize nothing is sacred and the message is probably never intact when the words first come, like they often would to Ruth Stone. So that allowed me a ton of leeway to experiment. Also, believe it or not, getting away from pen and paper. However romantic and more visceral that method is and much as I hate to admit it, using the laptop and getting comfortable with Word has really helped me in refining and editing and "shuffling the lines." But the pen has not been retired. My work has benefited from the practice of automatic writing. I use my non-dominant left hand and try not to guide the pen on the paper. Gibberish many times but often enough, some surprising kernels of poems. You become a bit like a child first learning to write, spending so much mental energy just trying to physically form the letters into words that it frees the brain to unpack and gather up thoughts not previously connecting through the conscious mind. You are using a side of, or at least a part of, your brain not usually driving the creative process.


If you could travel anywhere in the world for a writer’s retreat, where would you go?

Paris or London. Budapest or Prague. I have a place in the far northern reaches of the midwestern U.S. that is miles from anything. The nighttime ambient light is starshine. If it's overcast, a darkness that sticks to everything (to paraphrase Tom Hennen.) I do write well in that wilderness often enough, but mostly I read. The quiet there is more intense and calming than any library I've ever been in. But in retreat I would want to be among people, among strangers, in the noise and the color of a world class city. If nothing more than to be able to eavesdrop on folks conversing in a language I don't speak and cannot understand, to hear the inherent beauty and music in it.


What helps you through writer’s block?

Ah the pain of it! I used to get so angry and feel so empty when blocked. But now I go to my known points of inspiration. And I don't dally. I go straight to the poets that I love and their poems I have not yet read. I need to be surprised. Shaken maybe. At the very least, by the last line, changed. I need to hear universal truths about our humanism written in a new way. Or connect disparate ideas to form a new one. I can read Lucille Clifton or Mary Oliver, Ruth Stone or Aida Limon or W.S, Merwin or Ted Kooser or WIlliam Stafford and be twisted back onto the right path. I might start with old favorites but then search out a piece of theirs I have not ever laid eyes on. It shakes something loose, then. And Maria Popova is such a brilliant scholar! Has she read everything? If I am seriously jammed up, her weekly email/newsletter (it's called Brain PIckings) will land in my inbox just in time and something in it always seems to break the impasse for me. If you don't subscribe yet, do so immediately. It is priceless, it's free and it is magnificent. Beautifully written, it's a weekly bibliography built within a wonderful Popova discourse featuring concisely linked directives to a cohesive theme that always leads me towards new ways to look at the truth about being human and the gifts this earth gives to us. Read every word and linger over every illustration and be re-inspired.


Please list your previous publications and where people can find more of your work: (Social handles, blogs, website)

I have been anthologized in Witches' N Pink-In Which Poetry Breathes Life- National Poetry Writing Month 2020, Train River Publishing Volume Number 04, Summer 2020, The Eve Poetry Group Online Edition May 2020, The Passengers Journal- November 2020, Poets Unlimited Monthly- December 2020, Raw Earth Ink- Creation and the Cosmos Winter 2021 and The Quillkeepers Press- Soon a New Day- Spring 2021,among others. I am really excited to announce my latest chapbook manuscript has been accepted for publication and will be available through the usual outlets within the next 12 months. Which of course means a website is in the works. Pretty excited about that one! You can also find my work on Instagram @R.H._Alexander.

Enoch Black

Tell us a little about yourself:

I am a mythopoeic poet. I love weaving mythology and storytelling into my poetry, particularly around darkling, erotic, and nature themes. I am a book dragon and carry at least one book with me every where I go because they are my treasure. I enjoy learning languages and have a horrible case of wanderlust that keeps me traveling as often and as far as I can. I love Nature and interact it with mostly through hiking, kayaking, and scuba diving. I am also a proud cat dad.


Describe your writing process:

My writing process varies depending on form of writing I am pursuing in the moment. Working on one of my novels is not the same process as writing poetry. In regards to poetry though, I almost always begin with a topic and a story I want to tell about it. From there I choose a form I believe will best relay the story I want to share. Only then do I begin the actual writing process.


Some writers love the editing process, while others forgo it. What does your editing process look like?

Again, this process varies according to the type of writing I am doing. As it pertains to poetry, I proof read repeatedly! I proof read for grammar, but also to ensure I am following the forms correctly in regards to the syllables, the meter, and more.


What are some valuable lessons you've learned about writing?

I could go on and on about this topic so I will only choose one lesson I have learned. To borrow a phrase from Joseph Campbell, "Follow your bliss." If the writing you are pursing, like anything else in life, brings you joy, then do it. If it does not, write something that does.


Where can readers find more of your work?

My Instagram is the following: https://www.instagram.com/stormdragonpoetry/. I also run a poets society dedicated to helping poets stretch and challenge themselves. You can find the Mythos Poets Society at https://www.instagram.com/mythospoetssociety/ and the website: https://www.mythospoetssociety.org/.

Malvika R.

Tell us a little about yourself:

My name is Malvika, and I'm from India. I am an engineering student who writes in her free time. I am an avid reader and tend to spend a lot of my time reading books ranging from novels, prose and fanfiction. I spend my time scouring through moodboards on tumblr and then wondering where all my time has gone. I write as a form of expression because it is what comes easiest to me.


Who or what inspires your writing?

My writing is generally inspired by stories and characters that I make up inside my head, real life traits of people and events also tends to bleed into my writing. Poetry and prose was not something that I initially wrote a lot, I just happened to stumble my way into it. A lot of my inspiration also comes from poets I have read, like Sylvia Plath, her words have stuck with me for years. Ramona Meisel is another poet who has played a huge role in my love for poetry and prose.


What are your hobbies outside of writing?

Outside of writing, my hobbies would include reading. During the pandemic the time I've spent reading has increased exponentially. I also like to paint whenever I feel inspired. I'd like to consider cooking as another hobby. I spend a lot of time listening to music and watching numerous TV shows as an escape mechanism.

What would you like to be remembered for? (Doesn't have to be literary based)

I'd like to be remembered for being a decent human being, someone you can relate happy memories to, someone who made a small difference. I'd also like to be remembered for my words, if my words can make people feel, I think that would bring me satisfaction.

Where can readers find you (Social accounts, blogs, websites, etc.)?

You can find me on instagram @etchedinbloodandstardust

Lisa Molina

Tell us a little about yourself:

Other than stories I wrote as a child, I began my creative writing journey at the University of Texas at Austin, where I studied under the novelist/poet Zulfikar Ghose. He was a fantastic professor and mentor, and really influenced how I look at literature, and he also liked and very much encouraged my writing.


That was 33 years ago.


Between then and now, I have married, taught high school English and Theatre Arts, served as Associate Publisher of a local monthly family magazine, had a son and a daughter, and I’ve been working with students with special needs since 2000. My son, the eldest, battled cancer 3 times between the ages of 3 and 13, culminating in cord blood transplant from an unknown donor, an experience that has profoundly impacted my entire family.


A few years ago, I threw myself back into reading classic literature in my free time. Tolstoy, Dickens, Camus, Fitzgerald, George Eliot, Nathaniel Hawthorne, etc, as well as acclaimed modern works.


This led me to bingeing on the works, letters, journals, and biographies of Virginia Woolf, Shirley Jackson, and Sylvia Plath. I was stunned at how these women were all able to write such masterpieces while living in patriarchal times and societies, while also coping with mental illness, marriages, and families. From these women, I began to feel this massive wave of inspiration to write about my own life experiences, both external and internal, as they had in their lives.


In the past 7 months, I have written over 100 poems, participated in 2 month-long online poetry retreats, had over 50 works, (mostly poetry) accepted for publication in print and online journals or anthologies, and have re-connected with my now-retired Professor Ghose, who, unbeknownst to me until recently, socialized with Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes while they were all in London.


The macro and micro of life experiences really fascinates me, and I love it when I can discover simultaneous connections of the “infinite and infinitesimal.” I also tend to write about human struggles and existential questions, and the theme of dying and rebirth, using imagery from nature, mythology, stories from my life, and various characters, both real and fictional. Ekphrastic poetry is a lot of fun for me to write as well, since I love visual art..



What are your writing goals for 2021?

In 2021, I would really like to improve my writing by reading more of the great poets. Elizabeth Bishop, Hart Crane, Theodore Roethke, Wallace Stevens, and John Ashbery are at the top of my list.


I’d also like to continue “finding my voice” in my writing, while exploring new journals and magazines. I’m so happy that some of my poems have found their home in Quillkeepers Press!


Finally, even though the process of writing is rewarding in and of itself, I would be lying if I said continuing to have my work published isn’t also a goal this year. Being a former theater person, I know the power of the communal experience of art. For me, knowing that others are reading my poems creates a special relationship between writer and reader, and to me, art has always been about a relationship between the artist and the audience.



What are some valuable lessons you have learned about writing?


An editor once asked if I minded cutting the final line of a poem, and I have found that I could completely delete the finals lines or even stanzas of most of my poems, and it makes them stronger. Poetry doesn’t have to end neatly tied with a bow. I’ve also learned that I write best when I “get out of my head” and let the words flow organically. I’m less self- conscious and the words and images come more from the subconscious. Of course, I go back to edit, but this usually gets my creative juices flowing.



Favorite word(s) and definition(s)?


"Thank you for asking! After looking to all the formal definitions, I now know why I use these words so often. They are very “juicy” and perfectly capture much of what I want to communicate."


Womb:

1. Uterus

2. A cavity or space that resembles a womb in containing and enveloping.

3. A place where something is generated. 4. The interior of anything.


Wave:

1. A disturbance on the surface of a liquid body, such as a sea or lake, in the form of a moving ridge or swell.

2. Any surging or progressing movement.

3. To move freely back and forth or up and down.

4. To curve alternately in opposite directions.

5. A swell, surge, or rush, as of a feeling.

6. An outward curve, undulation.

7. An act or instance of waving.



Least favorite word(s) and definition(s)?


I can’t think of a word that I really dislike- maybe when people refer to others who are educated and artistic as “elitist” in a derogatory way.



Most overused word(s) and definition(s)?


Probably I and You, since I tend to write from first person point of view.

Other overused words are:

Womb, waves, pulsating, universe, and resurrection.



Tell us about your previous publications and where people can find more of your work: (Social handles, blogs, website)


Where to find my works:

My writing blog: lisalitgeek.wordpress.com

Instagram: @lisabookgeek

Twitter @lisabmolina1

(Some publications my work can be found:

Quillkeepers Press

Beyond Words Magazine,

Trouvaille Review,

The Ekphrastic Review, The Tiny Seed,

The Poet’s Christmas and Faith Anthologies,

Neologism Poetry Journal,

Amethyst Review,

Speaking Cat podcast, Ancient Paths,

OVERTHINK zine)


Rhian Brooke

Tell us a little about yourself:

I’m a poet and spoken word artist from Suffolk in the UK. I have been writing poetry since I was about 7 years old but it’s only been in the last 2-3 years that I’ve taken it a bit more seriously and started sharing my work. I’m married to Simon and we have a dog called Betty and two cats Allen and Sugar. I love clubbing and am a bit of a party girl (even at 40). My favourite film is Pulp Fiction. I read The Secret Garden most years around Springtime. I love anything by Irvine Welsh. The last book I read was Pure by Rose Cartwright and I am obsessed with jokes about cheese.


How would you classify your writing style?

My style is incredibly eclectic. I’m inspired by anyone from Victoria Wood and Spike Milligan to old school hip hop artists to Keats and Sylvia Plath, so one minute I could be writing a silly micro about bruises and the next, a long intricate piece about social injustice. I love wordplay and storytelling so my favourite pieces of mine incorporate both. I’m currently working on a spoken word album of poetry to music and am really enjoying playing around with cadence and rhythm. The album is quite serious but I often write comedic observational poetry too.


What helps you through writers block?

I find reading really helps me with writer’s block. However, I think the best advice I’ve ever been given for when you’re really stuck is to just write a stream of consciousness or describe the moment you are in, the sounds, the smells, the feelings etc it usually dislodges the block and lets words start to flow again. Taking a step away from the piece you’re working on and starting something new is enough to take the pressure off sometimes and enable you to go back to it with a clearer head. I’m not particularly strict with when I write. I tend to get manic phases, where my mind is racing with lines and wordplay and then phases of nothing. It doesn’t worry me too much anymore and I just trust that it will come back.


What do you consider your literary strengths and weaknesses?

I think my forte is spoken word. I studied Performing Arts and I think performing my poetry comes quite naturally to me and it’s definitely when I get the best response. I would say my weaknesses are using form and structure correctly, mainly because I’m not very good at sticking to rules. I tend to let my work flow freely and see what comes, which is also probably why I don’t really have a specific style. I’m pretty impatient too so I’m not very good at editing and improving my work. Once it’s done, it’s done and I don’t often revisit, which I should probably do a bit more.


Where can readers find more of your work?

I am on Instagram as @rhianbrookepoetry and the linktr.ee in my bio has links to other projects and podcasts I’ve been involved in. You can also find me on YouTube as Rhian Brooke Poetry.

Soyini Alexander

Tell us a little about yourself:

My name is Soyini Alexander, I am from Jamaica. I am a college student. I started writing poetry from the age of twelve. I also enjoy writing fiction. I like spending time with my family members as it is always filled with laughter. Writing allows me to empty my thoughts and helps me to better express myself.


Who or what inspires your writing?

I can not pinpoint a specific person or thing that inspires my writing. It is just something I love to do. When I observe something that stands out in nature, interactions between people, prominent issues within society and if someone tells me a story about themselves, I turn those observations and situations into poetry and prose.


What are your writing goals for 2021?

My aim is to complete a novel that I started writing. Writing the novel has certainly been an educational as well as challenging experience, but very much enjoyed. I also plan to display more of my poetry on my Instagram pages. I wish to learn more about writing poetry and prose to become a better writer.

What are your hobbies outside of writing?

Outside of writing my hobbies are photography, watching movies, drawing and painting. I mostly take pictures of nature, sunsets are my favorite scenes to capture. My favorite genre of movie is romantic comedy. Painting and drawing to me are like poetry and prose, it’s a means of expression. Drawing and painting always leaves me feeling comforted.

Where can readers find you (Social accounts, blogs, websites, etc.)?

My Instagram is the following:

@_voice_it_ poetry_

@_simpli_city_


Dom Giddy

Tell us a little about yourself:

I’m Dom. I’m 48 and live in the county of Devon in the UK with my wife, two children, our dog Dave and two cats George and Zippy. I originate from the county of Essex, however moved to the South West of the UK in 2004. We live in a beautiful rural village surrounded by rolling countryside and views of Dartmoor. I love music and it plays a very large part in my life. I also play drums in a band. I am very much a people person. I enjoy helping others wherever I can, even if it’s just a kind word.

I have always had a very creative and active imagination since I was a child. I would write stories when I was younger, I especially relished the time of the week at school when my English lessons were on the timetable.

As a young child I would often imagine my toys would come to life whenever I left them alone. I would fantasise about all the adventures they would embark on, and how they would look out for each other. Long before Toy Story was ever thought of! I think I missed a trick there!

I also enjoyed mimicking people, and doing accents, silly voices and generally trying to make my family laugh. Some would say I have not changed that much!

At the moment I am attempting to write a short story for my 9 year old daughter. I keep coming back to it, and it appears to be growing from a short story into a small book!

I have also written lyrics to songs, which have yet to be brought to life with music.

Who or what inspires your writing?

This is a tough question. I would not say that anyone in particular inspires my writing. Interestingly I do not read a great deal, however, when I do, I tend to read autobiographical pieces. Or non-fiction accounts of peoples experiences. They do not necessarily have to be famous or well known in the public eye. If I find their story interesting or find they have something valuable to contribute to the bigger picture, I will read it.

That being said, my writing is inspired by my life experiences. My environment, and by who or what I see around me. I could hear a sound, or a particular phrase. A word even which interests me. My inspiration for writing can come from the most mundane of situations at times, to on the other hand, very traumatic events. Personally, and in the world.

This is particularly true of my poetry. I will write quite openly about my own mental health struggles of depression and anxiety. I write about my own physical health issues. I try to verbalise how these conditions affect me as a 48 year old man in my poetry. My faith as a Christian also inspires me to write, how living in a world where faith seems lost and non existent to so many.

I write about our beautiful planet and how I see it being destroyed by mankind. I will write about political injustice I see in the world. I need to write. It is my way of decluttering my incredibly busy brain. Effectively it is free therapy!

What advice would you give to a new writer?

Quite simply, in the first instance, do it. Just write. Do not get hung up on whether you think your work is any good or not. If you feel you have something to say, say it. Whether it is Prose, Poetry, Stories, Factual pieces, whatever your medium, if you are passionate, have a hunger and want to write, get typing. No one knows better than you what you want to say. Surround yourself with likeminded people. I for example had no idea such a wonderfully supportive, creative, and talented poetry community existed on Instagram. I have met some beautiful souls through this medium. If you are looking to put your work into the public domain, show someone you trust if you are not sure before you publish it. I would say be open to constructive criticism and learn to listen to other opinions, but also be mindful they are not always the right ones!

Having said that, if you write with passion, from the heart and you believe in what you have written, who can say it is wrong!? Writing I feel is very much like music or art. It is subjective to the listener, viewer, and of course reader.

What do you consider your literary strengths and weaknesses?

Oh my, what a question!! Well, until I recently had some of my work published in two Quill keepers Press anthologies, I was not entirely convinced I had many literary strengths! Joking aside, I think I can put emotions, and the way I see the world into words quite well. In my poetry I am very visual and like to try and take the reader on a journey in their minds eye with me. I want to give my reader a sense of what I was feeling, truly understand a particular emotion with visual reference. Make the reader feel my raw pain, or joy.

My literary weaknesses I would suggest are for the reader to truly enlighten me on. Once enlightened. I would probably reply their opinion is valid, yet subjective! I have never really sat and thought as much as I am now, about this question. I am fully aware of how arrogant that sounds! I think, because I still very much see myself as an imposter and not a “proper” writer, analysing my weaknesses in this area have not cropped up very often. Mind you, the definition of a “proper” writer eludes me to be honest, other than the more common stereotypical view of a best selling author, or well known journalist.

A weakness which springs to mind, albeit a weak excuse for a weakness, is I could probably get to the point in a timelier manner when writing my poetry. Some of my poems I look back on now, I feel say what they needed to say at least two stanzas before I ended the piece.

Where can readers find you (Social accounts, blogs, websites, previous publications etc)?

Readers can find me on Instagram as lyrical_lifebydg – My poetry website www.domglyricallife.com where you can find information on me, all of my writing, and links to older blog entries.

I have had work published by Quillkeepers press in Soon A New Day, and Turning Dark into Light and Other Magic Tricks of the Mind.

My Podcast on Spotify Lyrical Life Disorganised Waffle. Lyrical Life Disorganised Waffle is about, yep, you've guessed it, a Lyrical Life! The Podcast features Poetry, Poets, and writers. It's also aimed at everyone creative, no matter the medium. There's music, Talking points, Guest interviews and waffle on life!

Richard Merli

Tell us little about yourself

I'm basically a very introverted person, a loner. I work best alone. I've worked well as an editor and leader on magazines and newspapers. But I'm most content when I feel challenged or inspired to write. I write not just for myself, but because I have some important message I want to impart to my readers. I'm extremely driven. Even though I consider myself "semi-retired," I drive my self to work hard and to write or edit something every day. Often times, when I read or go to theater, I study the words, the language and plot closely. I am always learning. So often times, when people ask me when I plan to rest, I say: "There'll be plenty of time to rest when I'm dead." Seriously.

How would you classify your writing style?

Very expansive. I want my readers to visualize what I visualize in my stories. I want them to walk into my stories and see the characters and the landscape I am seeing. Colorful - I want my characters to be distinct and colorful personalities. Didactic - I want to impart some knowledge and moral with my story. So my characters are often rather stark - that is, they can be extremely virtuous or terribly evil. But even then, they are grey and not black and white, and can be very ambiguous.

Favorite Word & Definition:

One of my favorites is plangent - a loud, reverberating sound, like the bell on a buoy in the ocean.

Least Favorite word & Definition:

Actually, two words: politically correct - exhibiting political correctness. Someone please tell me what political "correctness" means. Are we supposed to hold political opinions so bland and mainstream that we're afraid of offending a lamp post?

Your most overused word:

Cool. I hate the sound of that word, especially when adults use it.

When did you start writing? How do you think your writing has evolved?

I first tried my hand at writing poetry at the age of eight. I'm not sure my writing evolved a great deal between then and my high school years. I think my writing and my vocabulary grew much stronger during my many years as a journalist and an editor. I read several newspapers a day. I began reading much more classical literature and poetry. I carried a dictionary with me in those days. Any time I came across a word whose meaning I didn't know, I looked it up. I believe I began to carve out my own voice. I've also become much more critical of my work. I often go back and read everything I write. I edit my work ruthlessly. I'm my own worst critic.

Where can readers find you (Social accounts, blogs, websites, previous publications etc)?

The best place is my web site, http://www.richardmerli.com. There they can read about my journey as a writer, what possesses me to write, and my advice on becoming published. They can also find interviews magazines have done with me. There is also information about my new collection of poetry, The Light of Ancient Stars.

Celeste Tsang

Tell us a little about yourself:

I have been writing poetry and prose since 2017. My work focuses on empowerment, mental health and the magical moments that make life worth living.

Who or what inspires your writing?

Mary Oliver is my favourite poet. Her words never cease to amaze me in the best possible way. Colin Tan @juxtaproser on Instagram inspires me a lot with his storytelling skills and writing. Everything from people to nature inspires me to write about empowerment and daily life with a little magic.

What do you consider your literary strengths and weaknesses?

My strengths are to turn my lessons to writings that are empowering or show people the magic in life. My weakness is that I do not follow rules for writing poems. I would love to broaden my use of different words since English is not my first language.

If you could travel anywhere in the world for a writer’s retreat, where would you go?

I would love to go to a suburban city in Italy. Italian food and culture are my favourite things in the world.

Where can readers find you (Social accounts, blogs, websites, previous publications, etc)?

My Instagram is @celestescreativ and my weekly newsletter on creativity is on www.celestetsang.substack.com

My poetry prints and commissions are available on my shop https://celestetsang.bigcartel.com

Jasleen Saini

Tell us a little about yourself:

I am a poet by passion and a content writer by profession. Animals and nature play harp in my heart. I find solace in Dr. Brian Weiss’ books. Sometimes I love clicking pictures of outstanding things. Family is my another heaven. I am looking forward to starting my own literary magazine.


Who or what inspires your writing?

Anything that stimulates my six senses.


When did you start writing? How do you think your writing has evolved?

I began writing poetry in 2019. My IELTS teacher and one Instagram writer prompted me to write. Reading instagram poets has helped me a lot in improving my poetic skills.


What are your writing goals for 2021?

To instil more and more alive as well as finger-licking imagery in poems.

Where can readers find you (Social accounts, blogs, websites, etc)?

Readers can find my poetry on @jasleens99 .

I am also looking forward to starting my own literary magazine in the coming months. Please wait for sometime!


Fara Tucker

Please tell us a little about yourself:

I love to laugh as often as possible while still taking things seriously that deserve to be taken seriously. I love shining a light on feelings and experiences that are common but not validated enough. I want people to feel seen and understood. I've been a social worker for 20 years. I closed my therapy practice in 2020 and am stumbling around trying to figure out what this next phase of my life will be about. I've been trying to own and embrace my creative self and allow it to take more of a central role in my life. This feels scary and vulnerable and exciting and liberating.

Why is writing important to you?

It's bittersweet to have reunited with writing in my 40s after many years of not allowing myself to make it a main character in my story. There's grief, but also gratitude. Now that we found our way back to each other again, I'm not willing to let it go. Through writing, I hope to discover and untangle myself; make sense of the world; express the unexpressible; make something beautiful; make someone feel something. Writing is alchemical. Sometimes it feels like work, but other times it feels easy and mystical. When I'm able to articulate something that feels true for me, it inevitabiity resonates with others. This feels magical to me.

Describe your writing process:

It varies, but often starts with an idea or a line that emerges and feels like it has some energy. I try to let myself write without editing first and return later to refine things. My mind tends to be fairly active and my memory is terrible so I make sure to record ideas in my phone whenever they arrive. My keep app is overflowing with partial poems, titles, lines, and stanzas. Sometimes when I want to write, but don't know where to start, I'll scroll through my app to see if anything calls to me. There are times when a poem practically falls out of me fully formed and needs very little editing. Other times I work on something over time stepping away intermittently to return with fresh eyes.

What are your writing goals for the rest of 2021?

I've been organizing my poems into possible chapbooks. I would love to focus in on this a bit more and possibly see my first one to completion this year (although somehow the year is almost half over?!). I'd also like to get better about taking regular breaks from my phone so that I can create a quiet spaciousness inside of myself that would support me in writing more.

Where can readers find you (Social accounts, blogs, websites, previous publications etc)?

I'm most active on IG @faratucker.

You can find my occasional blog posts, previous publications, and sign up for my mailing list at faratucker.com

I recently created an offering called Little Life Rafts: a digital workbook for staying afloat through life's rocky waters. You can learn more or purchase a copy on my website or at: https://sellfy.com/faratucker/p/little-life-rafts-digital-workbook/


Brandon White

Tell us a little about yourself:

I'm a poet, songwriter, and dabbling digital artist from Fort Smith, Arkansas. I'm the father of fraternal twin girls who are the light and color of my world, a proud husband, and a bit of a workaholic when it comes to my passions.

I've been writing in some form or another for almost 20 years, with poetry becoming my focus in the last three. I’ve worked closely with tara caribou of Raw Earth Ink in bringing my first two collections into the world and have enjoyed the process a great deal.

I’m a sucker for good conversation, good whiskey, good music, and excellent writing.

What are your hobbies outside of writing?

I enjoy reading, watching sports, and spending time with my wife and kids. Hobbies fell by the wayside when the babies arrived! Ha!

I look forward to discovering/rediscovering hobbies someday!

What advice would you give to a new writer?

That's a tricky question, but I’ll give it my best shot.

Inspiration, in my experience, lies somewhere on the border of our minds. It requires you to keep yourself open and aware of the world. If you take up too much mental space with things other than the wild curiosity that made you put pen to paper in the first place, you’re likely missing out on an idea or two.

One last thing, read and perhaps memorize A Letter to Agnes De Mille from Martha Graham. Those lines will come in handy.

What are some valuable lessons you’ve learned about writing?

You have to try and stay out of your own way. Get the words on a page before trying to disqualify them.

Your inner-critic can not only slow you down but stop you in your tracks. There's no room for fear of judgment. There's only the act of creation.

I've learned that the world is going to claw at your confidence and do everything it can to silence you. To write, to create, is an act of defiance in the face of a world that would prefer you remain silent. So write/create every day!

Where can readers find you (Social accounts, blogs, websites, previous publications, etc.)?

I can be found @


www.brandonwhitemusicandpoetry

www.instagram.com/brandonwhitemusicandpoetry

www.facebook.com/brandonwhitemusicandpoetry


Zachary Dilks

Tell us a little about yourself:


Well, I’m twenty nine, married and have a four year old girl. I work as a machinist currently making guns in central Texas. I was raised a military brat, so I spent the better part of my childhood all over the east coast. Being in so many different places with new people all of the time gave me a wide and varying perspective on life. As such, I tend to be pretty eclectic in nature. I enjoy a range of interests from camping to coin collecting, skateboarding to gardening, hot wings and too many more to list. Of course, my truest pursuit is writing. I remember making songs and sappy love letters nobody ever heard or read around early middle school age, but I didn’t actively start writing until about sixteen or so. Mostly, I wrote essays and short stories, only ever dabbling with poetry here and there. Then, my wife and I lost our first born daughter and poetry was the only way I could write. Making up new characters and situations or giving my opinions on the world stopped mattering. I could only get out how broken I was. The majority of my early poems are dark and lamenting, and, while I’ve evolved in my writing, the pain is still there and darker tones still bleed into a lot of my work. I’m not really a cynic though and I’m not an optimist either. I’m a little of both. I enjoy contradictions and the duality of life. I like the structured chaos of cities and wild calm of nature. Upsetting the apple cart, comparing them to oranges and somehow making lemonade.


Who are your literary heroes?


It’s a pretty short list. I’m not as voracious of a reader as is probably expected of writers. I enjoy a lot of work from a lot of folks, but there’s few I think I can’t live without. Most of the time that I read something that wows me, instead of idolizing it, I just want to write something better. Good work motivates me like I’m in a competition. With that being said, J. D. Salinger made me want to write, Tom Robbins made me want to write well and Poe made me feel okay with finding beauty in madness. I think a lot more songwriters than authors are on that list. Billy Joel, Freddy Mercury, James Mercer, Pharoahe Monch, Yasiin Bey and a few others are all amazing to me. The word-play, depth and pure passion that they possess all shine through in their work. Those are the characteristics that I’m drawn to. I want to feel their very hearts beating in what they have to say.


What are your writing goals for the rest of 2021?


I’d really like to get back to a regular flow of writing. I lost my mom about six months ago and haven’t had much to say since. I’ve maybe made a handful of poems all year and shared less than a quarter of those. I’m just recently starting to put some words down. I prefer classical forms of poetry, but I’ve been experimenting a bit more. I had a lot going on, writing-wise, last year and I’d like to pick some of those back up to see where they lead. I’ve got a second book of poetry sitting in Microsoft word that needs editing before I can search for a publisher, so hopefully I can find the motivation for that one. I should be submitting poems to journals and contests, but I think I’ll spend the rest of this year stockpiling new work and trying to improve. One thing I’m aiming to do more is to get out of my own self in my writing. I have some starts and ideas for new pieces from entirely different perspectives and lives. We’ll see where I am by December, though.


If you could travel anywhere in the world for a writer’s retreat, where would you go and why?


Preferably somewhere alone, with shitty weather and no reception. Somewhere that gives me no options, but to write. I get distracted or bored really easily when I’ve got choices. There’s a lot of places I’d love to experience to get new views and inspiration, like dark sky parks or anywhere you can see bioluminescent water or an aurora borealis, but I’d be too locked into the moment to ever pick up a pen. When it comes to writing, depressing settings are ideal.


Where can readers find you (Social accounts, blogs, websites, previous publications etc)?


If you do a google search of ‘zachary dilks poetry’, you can find all sorts of journals and anthologies I’ve been published at. Society of Classical Poets, Fourth and Sycamore, Scarlet Leaf Review and The Houston Chronicle are a few off the top of my head. Most of the time I share my poems on my Instagram account, @zachary_dilks_poet. There are a lot on there, so be sure to go way back. I’ve got one small book of poetry available on Amazon and published by Alien Buddha Press called ‘Wire My Scare Electric’. I hope people will check it all out and resonate with what they find.

T.C. Anderson

Tell us a little about yourself:

I'm a published writer and internationally-exhibited artist based in Houston, Texas. For my day job and career, I'm a professional graphic designer working on my Bachelor's degree in the discipline (graduating later this year!). I am going on my fourth year of being happily married to my best friend Jared, with whom I share Boomer, our lovable 90-pound Great Pyrenees menace. Beyond writing and art-making, I love reading books (I'm greatly looking forward to tackling my growing TBR pile when I don't have college textbooks to read anymore), watching movies and television shows (Lucifer, The Rookie, and Falcon & The Winter Soldier are recent favorites), and playing video games (I adore anything from Remedy Entertainment, with my favorite being Control). While I'm still trying to find my place in the worlds of poetry and art, I'm hoping I can find some way to offer what knowledge I have about writing, art, design, social media, education, and more to the world.

When it comes to your writing are you more of a plotter or pantser?

When it comes to poetry, I'm always a pantser. I run on emotion and instinct with poetic verse and prose. When it comes to full-fledged stories, however, I'm a plotter, oftentimes to a fault. I greatly enjoy the process of research and worldbuilding, so much that I sometimes lose interest in the actual story for which I'm building. I've put many stories and ideas on the backburner in the past because of this, but I'm trying to take the process at my own pace and write my stories as they come rather than get wrapped up in the details. It's certainly a learning curve and requires a vastly different approach than writing poetry!

Books everyone should read:

For poetry, I recommend reading from the large pool of poets out there, both indie and big name. Reading outside of your own works and inspirations is absolutely crucial to growth, and it has most certainly made me a better and more observant writer. Beyond poetry, I have only a few favorites that I feel are must reads, particularly The Gun Seller by Hugh Laurie (some of the best comedy writing I've ever come across) and You by Caroline Kepnes (being written in second-person, it's a fantastic study in perspective).

If you had to describe your writing style as a color, what color would you choose and why?

I feel like there are both lights and darks to my writing, but nothing I've done would likely fall neatly within the borders of black or white. Because of this, I feel gray would be a more appropriate answer, because a good majority of my works fall in between the extremes, with mixtures of both darkness and light.

Question 5: Where can readers find you (Social accounts, blogs, websites, previous publications etc)?

I can most frequently be found on Instagram @thetcanderson with regular posts of both art and poetry! I also have a website, www.thetcanderson.com, on which you can find information about where to purchase my first poetry collection, The Forest, as well as where I've most recently been published and exhibited.

Graham Feeley

Tell us about yourself:


My main love is film and writing for screen but poetry has been a great source for me to release some creative juices. I take pride in appreciating the small things in life and try to have a minimalistic lifestyle. My guilty pleasures are retro music, film and pop culture. I am pretty old school over all.


What is your favorite genre or topic to write about?

Mostly when I’m alone and find certain moments so beautiful, that I feel could never be shared or understood. I get a strong urge to translate the feeling with words. Even if the feeling is a painful one. I try to appreciate the beauty of every rise and fall along with the continuation of it all. My mood changes with the weather also, which influences my topics whilst building the subtext.

When it comes to your writing are you more of a plotter or pantser?

Honestly a mesh of both. I will experience something that moves me... I make mental notes, while tossing words around in my head. If I feel I will forget some of the small moments before getting home to my trusty pen, I will write sentences or words that highlight my feelings at certain times into my phone, mentally creating a timeline.

Upon getting home, I write out the notes and feelings. I then tweak and cut my written ramblings into a finely tuned structure until I feel it’s whole.

When did you start writing? How do you think your writing has evolved?

I have been passively writing since I was a teenager. It was not until the first lockdown where I took it seriously. I was forced to spend most of my free time alone and felt I was in a sink or swim situation. I focused on the beauty of it all which began the flowing of ideas, reflections and words. Over time I have learned to value reason over rhyme and appreciate the rhythm and shape instead. My love of script writing also aids my poetry into a ‘less is more’ type of structure.

Where can readers find you (Social accounts, blogs, websites, previous publications etc)?

I have poems featured in the books ‘Soon, a New Day’ and ‘Rearing in the Rearview’. I will also be featured within the upcoming book ‘Tan Lines’.


All by Quillkeepers Press and all available on Amazon.


As well as my Instagram page where I post up some poetry there too.


I also have a another page on Instagram regarding my upcoming feature film ‘The Three Deaths of Eddie’. It’s mostly film based but do post some poems there from time to time too.