(Looks like Jimmy is enjoying your book Liz.)
MOLLIE: Well Liz as you know us Collies are highly intelligent and I have to say that your book is one of the best debut collections I have ever read.And thank you,yes, I am happy here ,though my owners are, I have to confess, a right bunch of feckin EEjits and the fat baldy one is rarely sober.
Thanks again TFE for going to all this trouble, you are definitely the host-it with the most-it...
TFE: Not a bother Liz and yes the whole place is full of camcorders, I'm hoping to make a fortune in blackmail by threatening to post stuff on Youtube.here have a glass of poteen, Maris piper this one bit cloudy but still good.
Now Liz, how do you write your poetry, they read almost like they come out in one inspirational genius gush, or stream of consciousness, but if not , how long do they take to write? Also if they are more crafted then it makes them even more amazing, to be able to think controlled thoughts as wonderful as yours. (is that a question or a statement??) How do you do that? Do you even know? Do you fully know what you have written before you read it?
Brendan Behan: Jaysus Liz that's a mighty book you've written, I loved every scrap of it. Have you tried mixing the poteen with Drambuie and Cider? Lovely.
Shane MacGowan: Wheeere ...............2 mins pause ............ THEFUUGHHAMMI?
TFE: You're grand, Shane, you're at EEjit castle with Brendan, remember? You always wanted to meet him. Here sit yourself down and have another pint of poteen and some Tayto.
Shane: Grand. (laughs like Mutley out of Wacky races and falls over)
TFE: I'm also fascinated, Liz, that you use little noteboks and are always losing them,it would be a lovely thing for a stranger to find but have you ever lost a great poem, line or thought in one? How do you cope with that or are you so prolific that it doesn't matter.I' thinking of Garrison Keillor who lost his 1st Wobegon novel and never got over it,thought it his best and has spent the rest of his life trying (unsuccesfully in his opinion) to recreate it.
Another notebook that I remember losing was on a beach in Greece. It fell out of my rucksack and I didn't discover that the front pocket of my rucksack was open until I was half way across the beach....it was really crowded and warm and I didn't have the energy nor the wherewithall to go back and look...so I just kept going!
I wish I could lose notebooks in ordinary places and then there might be a chance of finding them. : )
But yes, generally I am a big notebook user, I type poems into the screen but keep notebooks nearby.
A year or so later, I joined Inside The Writers' Forum (ITWS) and met very accomplished writers who had been published widely and who encouraged me to submit my work to magazines, both online and print. So I really started publishing in the States before submitting to UK and Irish magazines. I became very disciplined in my writing and did daily challenges with the poets from ITWS. I also won a few competitions which helped me develop some faith in my work.
(TFE, sorry this is going to be rather long-winded...)....so getting on to why I decided to seek book publication...I had heard about SALT publishing from different sources online and last Oct. I began checking out the type of work they published and their general philosophy and liked it a lot. Out of sheer curiosity and with no definite intent, I checked their website and saw that they were looking for submissions for The Crashaw Prize, I read the conditions of entry and was disappointed to see that because I lived in Spain I couldn't enter. I sent an e-mail to Chris, the director of Salt. to ask if he had a general submission period that wasn't connected to The Crashaw Prize and he replied that I could send him 6 poems whenever...within a few days I had selected 6 poems and sent them to him. The next day, he e-mailed and asked me to send a full collection of poems for consideration. I was excited and motivated by his speedy response and I had more or less 70 or so poems that I began organising into sections and sent them to him within about 2 weeks. Around Christmas time, Chris replied to say that he was interested in the collection but wanted me to take out one section that I had which was related to the theme of 'Poems about poems' and to forward him the collection again with that section removed and about 10 other poems to take their place. In about a week or so, I forwarded the collection again. Actually, the way I found out SALT was going to definitely publish me was in a sort-of-roundabout way.... In January, I think, Chris had put a list of the writers he was going to publish in 2009 up on Facebook and my name was on the list. I was on Facebook at the time but was not very active on it so didn't see the list...Irish poet, Barbara Smith, sent me a congratulatory note saying she saw my name there....and that was how I discovered it...I sent an e-mail to Chris asking him if it was really true and he replied Yes! So really, I suppose, I am a total slush-pile poet! ; ) It all happened so fast that it is only now I've had time to reflect on the sheer-speed of it all as it has just been a year between submitting to Salt and having a 4 month old book ….I was lucky in that it was my first and only experience of submitting the full collection.
TFE, time has flown by. I have so enjoyed talking to you, I hope I didn't go on too much for your readers and guests but the poteen may have made me get slightly carried away...now it is time for a re-fill, must circulate, Amy Winehouse looks pretty lonely, think I'll say hello...
TFE, just to say that next week, on Thursday the 3rd of December, I'll be with Rachel in Scotland visiting her very popular 'More About the Song – Rambling with Rachel Fox' Blog http://crowd-pleasers.blogspot.com/ I am very much looking forward to that even if her questions are tricky and unusual but certainly interesting....; ) !