... Jen Chichester
1. Tell me about your book, Beldams and Bedlam, and where you got your inspiration for it?
I participate in monthly poetry challenges on Instagram, and I ended up writing many poems that I was proud of. I realized that most of these poems had intersecting themes, especially with regard to aging women and how they are treated.
2. Did you learn anything from writing this book? If so what was it?
What I learned from writing Beldams and Bedlam is that I stand in the shoes of different women through poetry. I can tell their tales in relatively few words, and, for some reason, this speaks to people.
3. What is the most influential book you’ve read in the last year?
The Road to Long Beach and The Witch’s House by Anne Norchi Iglesias. There is so much passion etched into the lines of this novel! I saw a lot of myself and my best friend in the two main characters.
4. What are the top three books in you TBR pile?
1) Hard Hearted Hannah by Jolie St. Amant
2) Raven Thrall – J. Elizabeth Vincent
3) Ghost in the Canteen – Jen Rasmussen
5. If you could have one meal for the rest of your life what would it be?
Do Enjoy Life cookies count as a meal? I could eat those every day! In fact, I kind of do… It’s a guilty pleasure.
6. What is the longest you’ve gone without writing?
For myself? Years. As in, I lost count of how many. I don’t recommend spending over a decade in college.
7. You’ve just been kidnapped and the people from the last TV Show/Movie you watched have to save you. Who is it?
Jessica Jones. I think I have a fair chance!
8. If you could bring one musician back from the dead, who would it be and why?
I’m not sure that I would, but if I had to choose, it would be Jeff Buckley. His time got cut way too short, and I know he would’ve done many more amazing things had he lived longer. But, in a weird way, his tragedy is part of his allure.
9. If you could live in a book, TV show or Movie, what would it be?
Twin Peaks. I’m a bit of a fanatic, and I do reference the show in my upcoming novel, Sickening Sweet. Living in a bizarre world created by David Lynch is something that I’m totally okay with.
10. What motivates you to succeed as a writer?
As an editor, I’m constantly working with other writers. Seeing their dedication and passion makes me want to become a better author.
11. How would you survive a Zombie apocalypse?
Two words: Daryl Dixon.
12. What do you find are the most effective way of marketing your book?
Being active and engaging on social media is crucial if you want to market a book. Networking with other writers, hosting giveaways and reader parties, doing Thunderclaps… There are numerous ways to effectively market a book. The key is to be personable; be strange, be uniquely you. The right audience will gravitate toward that and stick with you.
13. What are your thoughts on good/bad reviews?
Reviews should teach us something about ourselves as writers as well as about the people reading our works. Yes, there will be one-star reviews, and it’s crucial to take those with a grain of salt. What I always hope to get (and strive to give in my own reviews) is honesty.
14. Anything you would like to say to your readers and fans?
You guys rock! You keep me going, and I promise, I will keep doing my best to thrill and chill you with my words.
As Robert Frost once wrote, "The afternoon knows what the morning never suspected." Aging, in our contemporary world, is treated almost as though it is a disease. This collection of poetry explores what it means to get older, wiser, and perhaps a bit kookier.
Jen Chichester is a misfit toy who enjoys learning, reading, and writing about anything oddball, eccentric, eclectic, mysterious, mystic, mythical, magical, and macabre.
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