My therapist suggested that I interview myself to deepen my own self-reflection on projects I am working on. I have decided to share my interview with myself here.
- What inspires you to write poetry?
- I have dabbled with writing with poetry for years, but nothing as extensive as my Metamorphosis: Bible Verse Poetry project. I have been doing a lot of soul searching and self-reflection, as well as trying to build a closer relationship with God over the last several months. God has ignited a passion in me to write, and He put the Bible verse Isaiah 40:31 in my path. I was inspired to write the poem “Promises,” realizing that He has promised me all. I do not have to spend my days anxious or afraid because He will direct my path and set my soul ablaze. He will renew my strength, and I will soar like an eagle. I felt a surge of energy as I completed this poem, and had the idea to complete an entire poetry project inspired by Bible verses. I asked friends and family what Bible verses were important to them. In only a few weeks time, I completed 51 poems.
- Your poems are inspired by Bible verses, but what topics do your poems explore?
- In Metamorphosis: Bible Verse Poetry, I begin with topics of depression, anxiety, and searching for something more. I discuss my own transformation, or metamorphosis, through faith and God’s love. I then transition to embracing God’s promises and the strength He provides. My last poem is titled, “I Am A Butterfly.” I have some poems that discuss what it means to be a warrior of God, what it means to be a strong, Christian woman, and how to find hope when you feel broken. The project is very much a personal testimony of what Christianity has done to help me, mentally and emotionally. These are verses and poems I can turn to when my depression and anxiety rear their ugliness. I hope my poetry project can give light to others in times of personal darkness.
- Do you have a favorite poem from your project?
- The title poem, “Metamorphosis” as well as the final poem “I Am A Butterfly” are very near to my heart. They are both foundational to the project and my testimony of my own transformation through Christ. I have two other poems, both named after two of my great-grandmothers, Evelynn and Edna, that I am especially proud of. Evelynn was and Edna is a strong Christian woman, clothed in dignity.
- Have you written any other books aside from your poetry project?
- Yes, I have written a young adult fantasy novel entitled The Goodness of Unicorns. In the book, fifteen year-old Rowan has little faith in herself, as she is a magicless witch. The only witch in all of Wisteria known to be unable to use magic. Rowan has a hard enough time navigating high school wherein she is ostracized for being different, but now an upcoming election has the Wisterian Empire on a dangerous path. In addition, she struggles with Odi, a demon tormenting her inner mind. Rowan faces her own inner darkness while trying to navigate a world where she doesn’t fit in and wherein outer demons threaten all non-witches and those who fail to conform to the growing Empire. Yet, there is a beacon of light in the darkness. Rowan meets a dire wolf who helps her discover the power within her, helps her deal with the demons around her, and prepares her to defeat them. Rowan must believe in her own magic in order to face her own demons and to save the Empire from impending darkness.
- Is there a religious undertone to your fantasy novel?
- Indirectly, yes. My character Rowan discovers her own power through the power of the light. Similarly, I have garnered strength through embracing Jesus’s light within me. I want readers of my fantasy novel to know that they can defeat darkness and demons. They can be overcomers, chain breakers, and mountain movers. They must embrace scripture such as James 2:19, “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.”
- What are your plans for your writing?
- I am currently in search of a literary agent for my fantasy novel. I have gotten several rejections, but I am staying hopeful. If I cannot secure a literary agent, I plan to submit directly to publishers that take non-agented submissions. For my poetry, I plan to submit the completed manuscript to an upcoming competition in December for a chance to be published. If I do not win, I plan to pursue self-publication. I am determined to be a published writer, and I will explore all avenues to make my dream a reality.
- What advice do you have for other writers?
- If you are passionate about writing, write to your heart’s content. Don’t stop writing. Write for yourself. Keep working to share your writing with the world. When you hear no, keep pushing forward. There will be a yes to your work eventually. I’m still waiting for my yes, but I am confident it is out there. I refuse to give up. Refuse to give up.
- Also, consider interviewing yourself to put your goals and aspirations in concrete form.