So we have come to the 4th interview for our 5th anniversary. Today we bring you an update from Sam, who used to teach us the intricate world of forms here at the bar when I made my stumbling steps into poetry.
What are you currently preoccupied with? (e.g. books currently reading, music, hobbies, etc.)
After my stint with DVerse, I started writing short stories, but eventually began collecting other authors’ works into anthologies, mainly in speculative fiction. I also have begun to produce independent film.
Any memorable events or milestones that you would like to share with us?
I’ve released 14 short story anthologies over the last two years, and every single one of them became the #1 Amazon bestselling anthology in their genres – science fiction, fantasy, or horror. I’m releasing the 15th title in my Future Chronicles series at the end of June this year. One of my own short stories was named a notable story in the Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy of 2015.
A feature film I helped produce, The Fencer, was nominated in 2015 for a Golden Globe Award and was shortlisted for an Academy Award (Oscar).
Do you still write poetry? If yes, would you care to share a poem with us?
I still do write poetry, only it’s now usually in prose form. Here’s one that isn’t.
It started with your voice, your shimmering breath
spiraling downward through the water’s depth –
calling – so strange! – my name. I rose, undreamed,
and came to you. Across that space it seemed
the world unfolded of itself, a findern
flower, pheasant’s eye, the unfilled cistern
of your heart. Then I came upon you, lost,
pitiful – until you saw me there, ghost
of your ghost, shade of your shade, reflection
of your longing. You bent to me, passion
finding mirrored passion, the gloaming coal
of mouth, of lips, of whispered betrothal.
Tethered, as a fevered dowry, to this
our conjugated sin, we pledged our kiss.
To a new poet or writer, what lessons or insights would you like to share?
Write from the heart, but edit with your head – mercilessly.
Any new projects coming up?
As I said previously, my 15th anthology is coming out soon. I’m also working on a novel, as yet untitled, and am producing a new short film, called The Future. The best is yet to come!
I think this shows that once you’ve started writing there is often no real end to it. You carry it with you all the time. I also wanted to take one of Sam’s old prompts to the bar, and why not take one that brought me into poetry: Twitter. For those of you who think that twitter is all about politicians making shortened statements that get’s retweeted, I have to tell you there is another world out there: poetry. The challenge of writing poems withing the limit of 140 characters (including spaces, line-spaces etc). Here is a link to Sam’s original prompt, and if you want help to do the character counts here is a link to a tool you can use if you don’t have twitter. Just as in the original prompt you can write multiple stanzas where each fit within 140 characters.
I also wanted to take the opportunity to announce the dVerse anthology that we intend to create with the help of you.
The poems for the anthology will be created in the following way:
For each prompt in the bar, the bartender will select a few poems and the bartenders will jointly select one poem that goes into the anthology. Therefore every linkup is a voluntary submission to the collection. Of course we will ask for permission before including any linked-up poem, and you should never feel that the link-ups become competitions. We will not do any announcements, but communicate privately. We expect to continue this throughout the autumn, and hopefully we can make this into a wonderful collection for you all.