This week’s interview is with a very talented lady. She is friend at WordPlay Writers’ Forum, a group we belong to in Spain. Her short stories are delightful, but as she says herself, her first love is poetry. She has a beautiful speaking voice, and she recites her poetry at Open Mic sessions. She once dyed her hair bright pink to recite the following poem. Part of which I copy here. The rest can be seen in ‘Give Voice to Verse’ by Margaret Rowland, available on Amazon.
I want to be this crazy old lady
Who dyes her hair pink gives waiters the wink
And doesn’t have to think about consequences
I want to wear spotty tops and stripy bottoms
at the same time, and with odd socks?
I want to,dance all night long, shout at the moon
Stay in bed until noon if I want…………
1. Please tell us something about yourself.
I was born in a small mining village in Derbyshire called Bolsover, where I spent the first eighteen years of my life. My childhood memories were good, I had an extended family so a relative on every street. I moved to Sheffield to work, became more domesticated and responsible. I married, had two children and worked as a teacher and for Local Government in Social Care until I retired.
2. When did you know that you wanted to be an author?
I have always written, but since I retired and spend more time in my home in Spain, I dedicate lots of time to writing. I have had some short stories published in Wordplay anthologies, but my love of poetry is my driving force. I enjoy attending open Mic sessions to read my poetry aloud.
I never intended having my stories and poetry published, but when I read out my efforts at the various writers’ groups I attend, people encourage me to publish, particularly my poetry. I simply thought why not! Thanks to these people I plucked up the courage to publish.
3. What conditions do you need in order to write?
I used to love getting up in the morning and sitting in the sun and writing for an hour when I retired and moved to Spain. I still enjoy the physical activity of writing with a pencil in longhand on a large A4 pad, but technology has taken over and I have a device that I can use anytime and anywhere to write down thoughts and ideas.
4. How do you come up with ideas for your poems?
Before I retired, my brother bought me a book on ‘how to write poetry and prose. It had short exercises and somehow it gave me ideas. I remember looking forward to reading the next chapter, wondering what it would inspire me to write next.
I don’t know where my ideas come from, but I know that I always keep a pen and paper by the side of my bed and have been known to write down ideas and words in the dark in pencil, in the middle of the night then spend hours the next day trying to decipher words scribbled down.
5. Is there anything else you would like to share with us.
I still have several short stories that I would like to publish as a short collection. I have also begun to write two novels. I have the plots for both, and have some good descriptions of characters, but struggle with tightening up the prose and editing. It will come together one day. I must discipline myself to finish them. I also have more than enough poems to complete another small collection of poems. I still write down ideas and make every effort to write and edit and complete one poem a month at least.
I enjoy hearing the stories and poems that other people write, that’s why I attend three writers’ groups and attend Open Mic sessions when I am in the UK. I believe that poetry is written to be read aloud. I love it!
Margaret Rowland’s poetry book ‘Give Voice to Verse’ is available on Amazon. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Give-Voice-Verse-Margaret-Rowland/dp/1511567767/ref=cm_sw_em_r_dpcod_dDbCvb0QNW0J5_tt
She can also be found on Facebook.