Describe your creative space. Do you work at home, in public spaces, etc.?
I usually work at home, since I find that I need a quiet place to write and reflect. Sometimes, when I look for inspiration, I do visit local coffee shops and/or bookstores and jot down ideas.
What kind of materials do you use? Do you write by hand or type? What is your favorite writing utensil?
When I get an idea, I tend to write it down first by hand, in a notebook I always carry with me.
At a later date, I go back and re-read what I had written and begin creating an outline for a short story or a poem. I prefer using pens, and not pencils.
What is your routine for writing?
I do not have a “set” routine for writing. For me, it is something that happens spontaneously and I prefer not to plan it out. However, when I am in the editing stage of a piece, I do set aside a specific time for proper review.
How long have you been writing? When did you start writing?
I started writing “officially” when I was fourteen years old. I began putting together words in English that had a nice sound to them, and, without intention created my first poems.
Who is your intended, or ideal, audience? Who do you write for?
I do not have “one type” of audience in mind when I write. I hope to appeal to as many people as possible, since the topics I write about tend to be universal and quite broad.
What inspires you to write? If you are blocked, what do you do?
I am inspired by the “everyday”–people and situations I see around me. Wherever I am, when I walk down the street, when I ride the train or when I am on a plane, I listen and look out for “stories.” If I feel blocked, I leave it alone, sometimes for hours, sometimes for days, and come back to the materials when I feel ready. I see writing as a process–sometimes things run smoothly, sometimes they do not. But in the process I learn new things about myself.
What other things do you do besides writing? Do you dance or play golf, etc.?
I like to read, paint, take photographs, dance and practice yoga.
I also love to go to the cinema and listen to all kinds of music.
What is your favorite part of the creative process?
My favorite part is coming up with a new idea. When I get that “spark” I can’t wait to write it down and imagine the different ways in which it can develop. It can be something small and completely random, like a phrase that comes to mind or a sentence I heard someone say, and the rest goes from there. It is an exciting process of discovery.
What is your advice to aspiring writers?
My advice is simply to keep at it. When I think back to when I first started writing, I never realized what a big part writing would actually play in my life. Today, I can absolutely say that writing is my passion–it is the way I share myself with the world, it is the way I find my voice.
Michael Hogan is the author of twenty-six books including the Irish Soldiers of Mexico which was the basis for an MGM film starring Tom Berenger and three documentaries. His work has appeared in numerous journals including the Paris Review, the Harvard Review, the Ohio Review, American Poetry Review, the Agni Review, New Letters, and others. He currently lives in Guadalajara, Mexico, with the textile artist Lucinda Mayo and their Dutch Shepherd, Lola.
You Know Who You Are, Morning Walk, The River Beneath Us, After the Argument, and Aftermath, Volume 6, Issue 2
The issue is available as a PDF here.
The optional theme is A Defining Moment.
Contributors: Serena Agusto-Cox, Charles Joseph Albert, Madison Barlow, Gary Beck, Isaac Black, Robyn Blocker, Madelon Bolling, Nichole Brazelton, Charles Brice, Heather M. Browne, Ankita Chatterjee, Jennifer Christgau-Aquino, Joan Colby, Holly Day, Megan Duffy, Charlotte Edwards, Donna Emerson, Robert Fern, Mary Sophie Filicetti, Vanessa Frank, Robert Granader, Carol Lynn Stevenson Grellas, Ed Hack, David Hargreaves, Angela B. Harris, Alison Hicks, Michael Hogan, Margot Hughes, Mark Jackley, James Croal Jackson, Finn Janning, Marc Janssen, Christina Kapp, Hanna Komar, Kristin LaFollette, Paul Lamb, Naomi Lowinsky, Lisa L. Lynn, Shwetha Mahendran, Ivy Marie, Carolyn Martin, Barbara McHugh, Meg, Juliana Mei, Pete Mladinic, Marlene Molinoff, Daniel Edward Moore, David Morris, Mark Murphy, Martina Nicholson, Kevin Norwood, Caroline O’Connell, Ada Pelonia, Barry Peters, Maria S. Picone, Fabrice B. Poussin, Dana Robbins, Sam Rose, Christopher Ryan, Susan Chock Salgy, Carmelinda Scian, Ashley Scott, Kevin M. Scott, Juliette Sebock, Shruthi Shivkumar, Leela Srinivasan, Emma Staffaroni, John L. Stanizzi, Lisa Stice, Adriana Stimola, Ryan Thorpe, Phelan Tinsley, J.T. Townley, Mark Tulin, Cathy Ulrich, Emily Unwin, Doug Van Hooser, Richard Weaver, Angelica Whitehorne, Nancy Wick, Casey Woods, Orit Yeret, and Cyndie Zikmund.
Reviews: Dark Fathers and other poems by David Anthony Sam and (My Life and Other…) Famous Train Wrecks of Ohio Bill Abbott.
The Magnolia Review Ink Award: To Be Announced!
Kristin LaFollette is a writer, artist, and photographer and is the author of the chapbook, Body Parts (GFT Press, 2018). She is a professor at the University of Southern Indiana and serves as the Art Editor at Mud Season Review. You can visit her on Twitter at @k_lafollette03, on her personal website at kristinlafollette.com, or on her photography website at lsphoto1020.wordpress.com.
Oak + Second series, Volume 6, Issue 2
Originally from Texas, Robyn Blocker is a writer and EFL teacher who has lived in Asia for nearly ten years.
Chiaroscuro, Volume 6, Issue 2
Serena Agusto-Cox, Suffolk University alum, writes more vigorously than she did in her college poetry seminars. Her day job feeds the starving artist, and her poems can be read in Broadkill Review, Dime Show Review, Baseball Bard, Mothers Always Write, Bourgeon, Beginnings Magazine, LYNX, Muse Apprentice Guild, The Harrow, Poems Niederngasse, Avocet, Pedestal, and more. An essay also appears in H.L. Hix’s Made Priceless, three poems in the Love_Is_Love: An Anthology for LGBTQIA+ Teens (2019), and a Q&A in Midge Raymond’s Everyday Book Marketing. Serena also runs book review blog Savvy Verse & Wit and founded Poetic Book Tours.
Is this the worth of us?, Gun Safety, and Hide-and-Seek 2.0, Volume 6, Issue 2
Mary Sophie Filicetti writes fiction in the myriad coffee shops around DC, and has discovered a love of flash fiction. Her first publication appeared in Everyday Fiction in January. She is also a contributing author to Building on Patterns Preschool Braille Curriculum.
Anniversary, Volume 6, Issue 2
As a retired Ob-Gyn, Dr. Martina Nicholson has been most interested in the interior landscapes of women. She has published six poetry books through Old Mountain Press. She is fascinated by cross-cultural issues and language, as well as growth and healing.
Brain Waves, Fabergé Egg, Fossil Fish, and Moons of Jupiter, Rings of Saturn, Volume 6, Issue 2
Barry Peters lives in Durham and teaches in Raleigh, NC. Print and online publications, some forthcoming, include The American Journal of Poetry, Best New Poets 2018, New Ohio Review, Poetry East, Rattle, and South Florida Poetry Journal.
Slice of Life, Crucifixion, Long Shot, and Road Trip, Volume 6, Issue 2
Juliana Mei is currently a sophomore in English Literature at Nanyang Technological University, whose interests include playing the violin and engaging in personal projects usually tied to photography and design. She participates actively in her institution’s creative writing competitions, otherwise reading and writing conscientiously as often as she can.
In the Sickroom, Again, A Prescription for Madness, Lessons for a Young Witch, A Much Better Mistake, Christmas with the Devil, and Growing Pains, Volume 6, Issue 2