Good morning all and welcome to the first edition of Writing Corner, where I delve into a conversation with great writing talent. I have had the amazing opportunity to get know the first guest on this blog and hope you will agree with me she has a talent for poetry and the drive to succeed. She has an upcoming Poetry book and I had the privilege of capturing her for a few moments to answer some questions. So without any further ado….
Cassy Fry – An interview
Bio: Cassy Fry is a writer, poet, blogger, arts reviewer and speaker based in the south of England, who has worked in the arts and creative sector for over ten years. She loves dancing like a wild woman, wearing red lipstick and cuddling cats. She believes in the power of creativity (and your favourite pop song).
Thank you for allowing me to converse with you about your up and coming release. So to start with, how are you? Are you having a delightful week?
Like most of my weeks, it is busy, creative and full of ups and downs while still feeling incredibly slow. It might just need more coffee.
Just a little background, when did you start writing and what draws you towards poetry?
I’ve always loved books, I studied literature and I’ve written since I was a teenager, but only started sharing my writing in the last few years. I started a creative lifestyle blog in 2011 and then began posting my poetry in 2015. Basically I procrastinated for 20 years and then started publishing books immediately! A lot of my poetry is very personal, so I needed to wait until I was ready to release it and some will always remain private.
I’m drawn to poetry, because it is lyrical, beautiful and sensual. It is rhythmic on the ear, visual on the page and it speaks straight to the heart. It feels quite indulgent and playful, yet also incredibly powerful and relevant.
Do you have a muse or an activity that inspires?
I have many muses! Some more willing than others! A lot of my poetry is inspired by people and conversations, with lovers and friends. I’m also inspired by other artists, particularly writers, and some of my work transforms or responds to other texts.
This isn’t romance, tell me more please. How did the idea blossom and get to this stage?
Well this is one of the projects that had a muse. It wasn’t a project I planned, more of a project that happened to me! I unexpectedly fell in love with someone I shouldn’t’ve, who does not want to be with me, and it triggered my PTSD from sexual abuse and with it a whole load of repressed romantic traumas, as well as a relapse into depression. I wrote my way through it, to try and make some sense of what was happening and to process all my feelings, not just from this but all the heartbreaks and knock backs I’ve never really dealt with in my life. It is basically a really intense reaction to rejection!
As I shared snippets of work in progress and some short one-liners, it became obvious that they really resonated with a lot of people. We have all had at least one unrequited love, epic heartbreak or doomed romance. I had written over 100 poems and it just suddenly felt like one piece of work. So I put them together and suddenly I felt I had something beautiful, that I could be proud of, that brings me comfort and that I wanted to share that.
I’ve had a sneak peek into the cover design and I think it suits perfectly. What made you settle on the design?
Because I do everything DIY, less is more! I wanted to keep it simple but iconic (and within my design capabilities!). This collection is all written verse, and as I use a typewriter app to note and share work in progress on social media, I wanted it to keep that aesthetic on the inside, but still wanted a strong visual identity.
My last two books were visual poetry or word art. 50 Shaded Poems is a collection of blackout poetry made from Fifty Shades of Grey and I Forgot is a series of handwritten digital notes collated into one poem. Both are in black and white, so it seemed apt to continue that.
The cover features a heart that has been shaded grey and is cracked but still whole. It isn’t a surprising design, but it is a perfect representation of the romantic journey in the collection, which is split into three sections – one about falling in love or lust, another about heartbreak and rejection and finally finding comfort, feeling philosophical and moving forward. Even when our hearts are broken and faded, they still somehow stay intact.
When can we expect it to be available and where can we buy it from?
It is available to pre-order via my IndieGoGo campaign until July. Then it will be available for sale via Blurb in August. It will also be available to my patrons on Patreon as a PDF.
What poem or written piece are you most proud of?
A poem called Emotional Echo that is in the book. I was talking to my friend when the title came to me, I wrote it down. Then a few days later I woke up with the first few lines in my head. I grabbed my phone, spoke them, stopped, and and then the next lines came, and the next. It didn’t need much editing as I liked it raw. It means a lot to me. I’m hoping to make it into a short poetry film soon.
What is your writing schedule? Do you have one?
I just write all the time, any chance I get.
Favourite spot to write?
Sell your book in five words:
It’ll heal your heart (maybe)
How do people find out about Cassy Fry?
Visit my website cassyfry.com or follow me on social media and you’ll get to know me pretty quick!
ONE MINUTE FIRE ROUND
I would like to ask you random questions for you to answer with the first thing that pops into your head.
Shakespeare or Marlowe?
Coke or Pepsi?
Of all time… Sylvia Plath
Right now… Lora Mathis
Story or poem?
Story. Might be a surprising answer from me, but I think most good poems tell a story.
World without words or life without love?
You can tell this question comes from a mind that writes dystopian fiction! It is a tough decision and no quick answer as it requires significant overthinking! I don’t know how I would cope without words, but the human race would be doomed without love, so I guess I’d lose the words for love, trusting that love would lead us to communicate in new innovative ways. If it was just my life without romantic love though, I’d chose the words first every time!
Carter USM, David Bowie, Ani DiFranco, Bruce Springsteen, Kathleen Hanna, Leonard Cohen, Cake, Ezra Furman, Depeche Mode
Biscuits or cake?
But I love all the sugar groups! Depends on the options available, I’d choose bourbons over fruitcake, but would pick a slice of lemon drizzle over a pack of plain digestives.
Other places to find Cassy Fry:
@CassyFry on Twitter and Instagram
I would like to give a huge a thank you to Cassy for taking the time to answer my questions. She is honest and open and she is a pleasure to know.
After those answers I now fancy a lemon drizzle cake, a Bourbon biscuit and a hot coffee and to pull back a chair and read some poetry.
If you are interested in joining me in the Writing Corner, please let me know and I will ask you questions about your writing and then you get chance to participate in the quick fire round.
Thanks for reading.