Thursday, January 27, 2011

Author Insides - Alison Ross

Clockwise Cat publisher and editor Alison Ross dabbles delicately in verse. She also spews incessant invective. You may peruse her precious poesie and rowdy rants online. Alison's personal utopia would be to dwell inside a painting executed by Joan Miro, wherein Frida Kahlo, Arthur Rimbaud, Jorge Luis Borges, Dr. Seuss, David Lynch and The Cure all converge in felicitous, surrealistic bliss. Her poem, "Kahlo Sky," was recently nominated for Best of the Net by Up the Staircase.

Alison's poetry appeared in the Summer 2010 issue of The Battered Suitcase.

When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

At the age of six! I was obsessed with magazines geared toward very young kids, like Jack and Jill magazine. I regularly wrote in my diary, and I wrote short stories and poems.

Why do you write?

Because I don’t know how not to write. Cliché, but the damn truth!

Alison Ross Reads "Miro's Scream" from Jeff McCord on Vimeo.

Is being a writer/poet anything like you imagined it would be?

Frankly, I never imagined how it would be. I’ve always been a writer, so I’ve never had time to actually think about how it would be, because I have existed this way for so long.

What do you think makes a good story?

A philosophical core and crazy characters.

What's your favorite genre to read?

Currently, poetry, but I also love progressive non-fiction, such as Howard Zinn, Naomi Klein, etc.

Who is your favorite author or poet?


What books or stories have most influenced you the most as a writer?

Les Fleurs du Mal (Baudelaire), Les Illuminations (Rimbaud), 100 Years of Solitude (Marquez), random books of verse by Neruda and Borges.

What books or stories have most influenced you as a person?

Great question! That would have to be books of verse by Rimbaud. He taught me that you can be colorful and chaotic without chagrin.

Where/how do you find the most inspiration?

I am inspired by listening to loud music, watching a David Lynch film, or looking at a painting by Kahlo, Miro, Goya, Basquiat, Dali, etc. All forms of art inspire me, but the visual arts take special precedence. In fact, I am also very into street art and street fashion. On the other hand, I listen to a lot of music on my way to work, and that inspires my creativity as well. Ruminations on time and mysticism further inspire me.

What does your family think of your writing?

They like it, but I think they find it rather cryptic. Both my parents are English teachers and rather well-versed themselves, but moreso in the classics.

What is your work schedule like when you're writing?

What work schedule?

Do you have any writing quirks or rituals?

I have no rituals whatsoever. I do write polemics and reviews regularly for my webzine, but my poetry writing is extremely erratic. I write it on a whim, when the fever grips me. As far as quirks – I sometimes write poetry at work, as a way to procrastinate, or in the car, after I have pulled over because a particular phrase or imagistic idea has captured my imagination.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

I find it excessively challenging to say authentically exactly what I want to say. I have to relax into my subconscious to be able to do so. There are only three or four poems of mine I am wholly satisfied with.

What are your current projects?

Other than my writing for and editing Clockwise Cat, and submitting poems periodically, nothing.

What are you planning for future projects?

I would like to publish a book of poems in 2011, but we’ll see. I tend to be too unfocused to be able to get anything of any consequence done, other than my webzine.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

Be more disciplined than I am.

Where else can we find your work?

Counterexample Poetics, Up the Staircase, Word Riot, Eviscerator Heaven, Bolts of Silk, Blue Fifth Review, Cerebral Catalyst, Laika Poetry Review, Disingenuous Twaddle, Haggard and Halloo, Wings of Icarus, and a few others. Also I have a poem appearing in the anthology entitled, Chopin With Cherries.

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