Catarine Hancock is the 19 year old poet of 3 poetry collections with her newest out just this month! Love and feminism heavily influence her work in all formats and lengths. When not writing, Catarine is a student and opera singer – let’s get to meeting her!
It is so inspiring that you have THREE published collections and you’re not even 20 yet! That is such an amazing achievement! What are your plans for your writing career?
Thank you! Honestly, I have no clue where writing will take me. I am also a music student in college, and I see that as my main focus. I hope I can always keep writing in my life, and release many more books, but I am not planning on abandoning music for it. I want to be able to do both, for as long as I can.
A few months ago you told me that you have proofs sent multiple times while you’re writing your book, can you explain your writing/ publishing process more?
One of my favorite things about being self-published is that I have complete control over my writing process. I can set my own deadlines, do all the editing I need, order as many proofs as I want, and more. I like to take my time while writing a book, and I don’t write well under pressure. Something I learned from my previous collections was that I could not ‘guess’ when I would finish writing a collection. That’s why, with ‘shades of lovers,’ I originally set the tentative publication date for fall of 2019, rather than spring. I started writing it in early spring of last year, as soon as ‘how the words come’ came out.
However, I know that I often go through phases of intense writing, followed by periods of barely being able to write a single stanza. I accounted for that when I decided to publish this collection. It just so happened that I had more good writing days than bad, and finished it ahead of schedule! As far as proofs go, I order them throughout to check things like formatting, the cover, and also to take promotional photos so I can begin marketing early.
What advice would you give to other young poets looking to get started on their career?
My best advice is to make authentic connections. Be supportive of other poets. Engage with their work. Buy their books. And don’t–I cannot stress this enough– just aim to connect with poets who are ‘big’. Form friendships and bonds with poets who are just like you; young, new, still learning. That is how you become part of this community! You will get noticed by the ‘bigshots’ all in due time. My other advice is to read. Read, read, read. Read as many poetry books as you can. It keeps your inspiration flowing and it shows that you support your fellow poets!
What do you hope readers will take away from your newest collection Shades of Lovers?
I hope Shades of Lovers delivers a message of love and positivity. It is a story of heartbreak and healing, of all kinds of relationships, of growth and forgiveness. While it is very personal to me, I think that everybody can find something in it that relates to something they’ve gone through.