Saturday, 19 August 2017

Savour - Art and Poetry meet by Vijaya Gowrisankar

Vijaya’s fourth book of poems, “Savour – Art and Poetry meet” was published on April 30, 2017. Her first three books of poems, Inspire, Reflect, and Explore are all best sellers. Her submissions have been published in Silver Birch Press, Nancy Drew Anthology, Poetry Marathon 2016 Anthology, Sometimes Anyway: Pride in Poetry Volume II, Forwardian, Triadae Magazine, iWrite India, Dystenium Online, and Taj Mahal Review anthologies. She has appeared as guest speaker in colleges. A participant in the Poetry Marathon 2016 (24 poems in 24 hours, 1 poem per hour), she has reviewed and edited poetry and fiction books. She participated in NaNoWriMo 2016 and completed her first novel in November 2016.

Connect with the Author

About the Book

Savour - Art and Poetry meet is my fourth book of poems. It is a book of ekphrastic poems. The book has 58 art work featuring 19 artists and 73 poems in 20 different poetic forms against the art work. Five of the artists are associated with Mouth and Foot Painting Artists. Each art work and each poem is inspirational and fills the reader with positive emotions.

Get it today on Amazon!

Keep reading for an interview with the author:

Did you have a hard time sharing your work with the public?

It was hard to overcome the initial internal struggle that I had with myself to share my poems with everyone. People hesitate to read poetry, thinking it is very complex. My instinct said I was writing good poems and it needed to be out in the world, for everyone to read. So I edited them and read them aloud, till they resonated with me and then published it as my first book Inspire.

What inspires you to write?

Everything around me inspires me to write. Nature, situations, emotions, failures, success, and incidents shared by friends and colleagues.

How often do you write?

I try to write at least one poem every day. The length does not matter. Some days, I just draw a blank and scribble random thoughts that have no connection.

What is the biggest obstacle you face as an author and what do you do to overcome it?

The biggest obstacle is changing the impression of readers that poetry is hard and it is not for them. I have not yet overcome it. People read my poems when I share my work with them. Most of them are surprised that it is simple to read and understand. My dream is to reach out to at least one person in every home and change the impression that poetry is hard. Someday...

Do you feel the support of family and friends is helpful to you as an author?

Support of family and friends very encouraging. I can see their reactions live when they read my work. Reactions, both positive and negative, help me improve and write better. I also feel a divine connection when I write and that feeling helps me overcome any insecurity or indecision.

What is the best compliment you've ever received as an author?

There is a child in my building. She is around 5 years old. Her mother knows limited English. This child memorized my poem 'Angels' in English and recited it in her school competition. The teacher was awed and so was I, when she recited the poem to me.

Have you ever had a particularly harsh critique?

Yes, many. I received statements like - "The poem does not have a rhythm or it does not resonate. It should be written in a certain manner". I used to feel very hurt, emotional and tried to justify my poems at first. Now, I just take it with a pinch of salt. Once a poem is out in the world, every reader can interpret it the way he/she wants to. Once I accepted that, I was at peace.

What is the best writing advice you've ever received?

"You don't have to take every feedback and incorporate it into your poems. Take only what resonates with the soul of your poem".

How do you come up with the titles for your books?

The first three titles - Inspire, Reflect and Explore just came to me when I was writing the book or compiling it. The titles just came to my mind and it resonated. "That was it". For the fourth book, I started with a different title. Once the book was complete, I felt the title did not fit in with the book and the content. My publisher and I brainstormed back and forth, till Savour - Art and Poetry meet struck the chord.

What inspired your current work?

In November 2016, during my trip to Jodhpur, Jaipur, and Jaisalmer, I came across artists for whom painting was a passion, not just a profession. The seed to collaborate with them took place in my mind. My publisher suggested I do a complete book of paintings and poetry. I started reaching out to artists – within India and internationally for this collaboration. The artists who agreed and whose work fit into my vision are featured in this book.

What was the hardest part about writing your latest book?

Savour is very different from my first 3 books. The first 3 books were just my poems and I went about my thoughts and my feelings. Savour was based on the art work. I learnt new forms of poetry. Different forms fit different art work. Getting this combination right was the key in this book.

Saturday, 12 August 2017

Clarence by Stephanie Baruffi

Stephanie Baruffi lives in New Jersey with her husband and three sons. She is an Early Literacy Specialist and obtained her Master’s Degree in 2014. She is also a NJ state certified Reading Specialist. ‘Clarence’ was written in memory of her late grandfather, for which the book was named. He loved his big family and truly did have a big, beautiful set of ears!

Connect with the Author

About the Book

Clarence is a fictional story based off of real-life characters and family situations. "Clarence, A Story of an Italian Bot with Big Ears and Bir Problems" is about a young boy who doesn't seem to fit in with his loud family or his classmates. He knows he has enormous ears and is fearful that the children at school are right about him and that he doesn't belong, that is until his Nonna steps in and gives him something special to carry around with him in case he needs to be reminded that he is wonderfully made. This is a story about how knowing where you can from helps you to appreciate who you really are, no matter what anyone may think. Main topics include bullying and multicultural issues.

Keep reading for an excerpt:

Clarence’s family gathered around the dinner table. At the head of the table sat Clarence’s father, who had just finished a long day’s work at the family business. After he prayed with the family, they dug into a delicious Italian meal that included chicken cutlets, homemade meatballs, and pasta Fagioli. Each night during dinner, the family hollered back and forth across the table. Everyone talked in multiple conversations as Clarence watched and wondered why. Clarence was a shy boy and didn’t seem to understand why everyone shouted, especially all at once! As Clarence looked around the table, he noticed that each member of his family had black hair, brown eyes and dark skin. He also realized that all of their ears were of normal size and each of them seemed to look much like the other. But Clarence was the exception. He thought that maybe the kids at school were right about him. This made Clarence lose his appetite, so he asked to be excused. Nonna the Great followed Clarence into his bedroom.