Hello everyone! This week I’m thrilled to bring you an author I met through my participation in the flash fiction challenges at the Carrot Ranch Literary Community (carrotranch.com). Her name is D. Avery, and I just call her D. because I think it suits her.
When I asked D. to pick three or four questions from my huge list HERE she was ready to jump into the world of becoming a published author, once again. We all aspire to be successful authors and the best way to learn some of the tricks of the trade is to ask questions. I knew D. would share her experiences.
First, please meet my guest, D. Avery.
D. Avery (196?-20??) has long been a compulsive poet. Despite a very important day job educating public school children, she is often distracted by this compulsion, as well as by life’s great questions, such as “Kayak, or bike?” Though she has come to realize that nothing difficult is ever easy, she believes that it’s all good.Amazon Author Page
Hi, Colleen. Thanks so much for this interview. I’m really looking forward to our chat.
I would never do that! But I have noticed that beer and bars show up in a few of my short stories and even in some of the “ChickenShift” poems. Bars are more than a place to indulge a habit; there is usually a cast of characters there and some good storytelling going on.
If anything, I need to be careful that my characters don’t project onto me. Marge and Ernest are not based on anyone in particular but they, like me, enjoy beer, though we do not enjoy the same kinds of beer. However, I have found myself lately having a beer with my husband, us sitting in camp chairs in the garage as those two are often found doing. Hmm…
The hardest thing about writing is publishing, and yet, I always do so too impulsively. Formatting was a nightmare; I am not good with computers anyway so there was a lot of frustration and time-sucking mistakes and inefficiencies.
And, I learned a lot. I probably should have paid an expert but then I wouldn’t have learned anything. I did pay for the cover and I love it.
The other great difficulty with publishing, besides formatting the book, is putting myself out there. I want people to read my work and hope they appreciate it, even as I desire privacy and quiet. I have yet to come up with a decent explanation for going through with actually publishing. I am pretty sure it’s not for the money.
I should probably let everything stew longer, but-squirrel! (Or was it a dust bunny, forgotten and neglected?)
I have only three books, two books of poetry and now a collection of flash and short fiction. “After Ever” is largely comprised of fairly recent flash fiction pieces, but there are some other short stories in it that began years and years ago.
Writing flash fiction helped me build skills for revising those older, longer pieces. I am learning that what I might think of as finished and pretty good really isn’t.
When writing for a prompt just having come up with an idea and making a deadline is sometimes so satisfying that it blinds me to the fact that it was rushed and is still a raw and flawed piece.
I’m slowly learning that maybe all of my writing needs to have some time out before I have the right eyes for it. If I ever stop chasing squirrels I might have a better routine for writing and revising and considering the difference between a product and a process.
Thanks, Colleen. I had a great time.
Twitter: ShiftnShake @daveryshiftn
“A good poem is a contribution to reality. The world is never the same once a good poem has been added to it. A good poem helps to change the shape of the universe, helps to extend everyone’s knowledge of himself and the world around him.”
Click: What is a Rhyme Scheme?
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Colleen M. Chesebro is an American Poet who loves crafting paranormal fantasy and magical realism, cross-genre flash fiction, syllabic poetry, and creative nonfiction. Colleen sponsors a weekly syllabic poetry challenge, called Tanka Tuesday, on wordcraftpoetry.com where participants learn how to write traditional and current forms of haiku, senryu, haiga, tanka, gogyohka, tanka prose, renga, solo-renga, haibun, cinquain, Etheree, nonet, and shadorma poetry. Colleen's syllabic poetry has appeared in the Auroras & Blossoms Poetry Journal, and in “Hedgerow, a journal of small poems.” She’s won numerous awards from participating in the Carrot Ranch Rodeo, a yearly flash fiction contest sponsored by carrotranch.com. In 2020, she won first place in the Carrot Ranch Folk Tale or Fable category, with her story called “Why Wolf Howls at the Moon.” Colleen is a Sister of the Fey, where she pursues a pagan path through her writing. When she is not writing, she is reading. She also loves gardening and crocheting old-fashioned doilies into works of art.