Enjoy reading this interview with featured poet, Daniel Flore, talking about his upcoming poetry book and the creative writing process.
LF: Do you remember writing your first poem? What was it about? DF: Yes, I do, actually. I was in fourth grade. A friend wanted me to write a poem for a girl he had a crush on because he was unable to verbalize his feelings himself. So I wrote one, and I think I fell harder for poetry than he ever did for his 4th grade love interest!
LF: What are some of your favorite creative influences? DF: Oh gosh, many: Bob Dylan, Mary Oliver, Billy Collins, Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, Charles Bukowski, Arthur Rimbaud, Maya Angelou, Robert Frost, Edgar Allan Poe. I like a lot of my friends work too. I have been blessed to be around a lot of creative people in my life.
LF: Could you describe your writing process? DF: It totally consumes me. I'm a fan of to-do lists that I keep on my phone, or in these little pocket notebooks I get from the dollar store. I like to mix up each day with various projects I have going to keep things fresh. I have notebooks everywhere--our deck, my mother and father's house, in my back pocket, all across my desk. I'm writing and working constantly. One time, my wife and I were out driving and we ran out of gas. I had this new poem I'd written, so while we were waiting for the "Triple A" guy to show up, I worked on a recording of it. By the end of that afternoon, I had a finished audio uploaded to a poetry site for people to hear. LF: At what point do you decide to stop revising your work? DF: That's a good question. I go by my gut. I will revise quite a bit, but the heart always overrules the head in my writing. In other words, if I have something articulately worded in a revision but it's now missing that blunt force impact, I'll go back to the original. It's different everytime out, but I trust my instincts most of all. LF: What are you working on now? DF: I have a lot of things going on right now. My first poetry collection Lapping Water was just chosen for publication by GenZ Publishing, so I'm very excited about that, and we're working on getting it ready to go to print. I have a daily poetry series, The arrows on the clock are pointing at me, that people can subscribe to on Channillo.com, and I'm quite proud the series is doing so well. I have some more live readings coming up and, of course, I'm constantly writing and recording. I have more collections finished and in the works. In addition, I just finished an audio book version of Lapping Water.
LF: Why is poetry important? DF: Poetry reminds us we have a heartbeat. It cuts the crap away and gets to the heart of matters.
LF: What do you hope readers take away from your poetry? DF: When I'm writing I always hope the finished piece has a magic about it, something that moves a person wherever they are to a place of beauty, insight, appreciation, etc.