“For this assignment, I chose to interview a fellow WordPress blogger and writer friend of mine, Kindra Austin. To start, she introduced herself and talked about her upbringing. I asked her to name some writers that were an influence from a young age, and she named quite a few. Sylvia Plath, Edgar Allen Poe, Virginia Woolf, and Emily Dickinson were some of those that inspired her, and it was Plath who “incited her love affair with confessional poetry”. We then talked about her books, Magpie in August and Constant Muses. Magpie began as a diary about the relationship between her mother and over the course of a year or so expanded to encompass other family members. Her mother died in October of last year, and since she’d been working on a collection of poems and prose since the release of Magpie, she included more writing dedicated to her mother and dedicated Constant Muses to her. In addition to talking about her writing process, which includes her beloved cat and photographs of herself, her sister, her mother, and daughter, we also went over the literary collectives she’s a member of. As writer/managing editor at Sudden Denouement, Blood Into Ink, and Whisper and the Roar, she has come to know “savagely talented individuals who inspire me to challenge myself”. Most importantly, we talked about making it as a writer. She even gave me tips, detailing dedication, experimentation with different forms, building relationships, and sharing knowledge and experience. Finally, she named some of her favorite writers (I happened to be one!).
While some of what Kindra and I discussed was already known to me, I learned a great deal about what it takes to become a published writer. Kindra is extremely informed and a passionate human being, and it’s not hard to see why she’s so successful. I felt extremely honored to hear her views on our profession, and touched by her energy. This interview didn’t necessarily alter my plans; publishing my own poetry collection is still the main goal, but insight from someone who’s actually done it is quite invaluable. I feel encouraged to try different forms of poetry, and continuing to not be deterred by rejection letters.”
Kindra has always struck me as an incredible writer who combines a warrior’s passion with a mother’s grace. Some of her recent poems reflecting on her childhood inspired me to write this (and no, I don’t do her work justice, but…)