Today we have Jamey Boelhower who has published many collections for the years! Jamey writes poetry, blogs, and a fiction novel Under the Lights. Since Jamey wrote a collection along side his son, one could guess his collection circle around family and life tribulations.
What’s the biggest difference in your poetry from your first collection to your most recent?
One aspect I have noticed is that I am more observant of people and events. I have tried to let the description of the moment reveal the meaning to the reader. My earlier poems spent more time telling the reader how I felt, or gave away the meaning of the poem. I hope my work now allows the reader to feel something as they consider the importance of the moment.
What was it like putting a collection together with your son?
My son was always asking me to give him feedback on his poems, but he just kept them in his notebooks. I tried to get him to submit the poems to literary publications, even to Teen Ink. But he was too busy (and as his dad, I can attest to that). One night at dinner I told him that we could do a book together if he would at least give me some poems. I would handle the rest. We spent a month just deciding on which poems he wanted to share, but the whole process was fun. What is funny is that a few months later he published his own collection and is now working on his next poetry book.
You’re great at including so many descriptions for your reader’s senses, what sense to you most enjoy writing to?
I enjoy trying to recreate the moment that inspired the poem. I carry a notebook with me and jot down ideas, or even write down the first draft of the poem at that time. One of my favorite poems of mine is “Air Jordans and Big Gulps.” I wrote that poem on the back of a carton of cigarettes while I was working the graveyard shift at 7/11. I still have the original poem. My goal is to describe things so that the reader feels like they are in the middle of the moment. The fun part is to discover what senses are important for that moment.
I’m a big fan of repetition and line placement on the page so I really enjoyed those techniques of yours! Do you have a favorite technique to employ?
Thank you. To be honest, I have always worried about my writing technique. I don’t use punctuation much, I like using the line break to create the pause. I also have this style of using words or phrases in threes. There is just a flow I have with that style. I don’t use rhyme much, so line breaks and placing words or phrases on the page creates the pattern to follow for the reader.
What’s it like being an indie author?
I am a husband and father of six children. I maintain two blogs. I am a teacher and a coach. Trying to get my work to the reader is hard. As an indie author I am responsible for every aspect of the publishing journey. It is hard. I appreciate you conducting this interview. For me, and for most writers, we want to know that people enjoy our work. That is why some writers go through all the work it takes to get a book completed, so that someone reads the words and enjoys the experience.