When we began our search for poetry panel judges for this month’s HubPatron of the Arts contest, saddlerider1 was an obvious choice. He is one of HubPages’ most popular poets, and both discovered his passion for poetry and honed his craft while on the site. Since getting started, saddlerider1 has even published a collection of his poetry.
If you ever find yourself wondering if you will find your muse on HubPages, or perhaps try a new form of writing, you will find the following interview with this official HubPatron of the Arts poetry panel judge to be most inspiring. You might even come away with some insider tips that can give you a leg up in the contest!
When and how did you discover poetry?
To tell you the truth, I did not discover poetry. It discovered me 19 months ago, when my Muse stepped out of the shadows and encouraged me to write. This took place after joining HubPages many months ago, after I stumbled upon a couple of poets: Rawlus and Wayne Brown. Wayne had decided to give poetry a go after he read Rawlus, and it was then that I opened my mind to Poetry as well, and my Muse stepped in. The rest is history here at HubPages, where I have accumulated many great followers and fellow writers. They have been my inspiration, my passion, and I am truly humbled by their encouragement to me to write, they saw something in my scribes that moved them, thus I picked up my quill and have not set it down.
You mention in your bio that you studied the arts and loved to draw and paint. Do you think these forms of expression are closely related to poetry or very different?
I truly believe that the Arts do contribute as a form of expression and can be very closely related in any form that we as the vessel care to show or express ourselves. I was given the opportunity to learn from a very artistic mentor, he introduced me to the fine arts and acting. I spent many hours in my bedroom as a teen drawing, painting and reciting plays that I was studying to take back to class with me and play that particular character at the playhouse. I suppose what I learned way back then remained in my heart and soul and helped with the way I express myself today in my poetry.
You also share in your bio that you recently published your very first book of poetry, called In Absinthia. Could you tell us a little more about it
Well, the idea came from my editor. She is a very creative artist herself and she knows my style of prose and felt it was fitting to lend itself to what she created as my book title “In Absinthia.” My stuff reminding her of being written from the late nineteenth century; it has the echo to another time and place when artists frequented Paris, in absence of where they started out.
As someone who uses Twitter, do you think that the short format of a tweet is particularly conducive to poetry?
I can’t really answer that question, I used Twitter as a poet only to reach out to other Poets and writers and to link them back to my own site and it works, I don’t short tweet any of my poetry, I use it simply to attract new friends and I love to retweet their tweets and they appreciate that to.
When you create a poem, is there any particular editorial process that you go through?
Yes there is. Many a scribe has found my waste paper back in the corner of my library. I am my own worst critic, yet there have been pieces I have salvaged from the trash, re-worked, and found a place for at a later time. I hate to throw my thoughts away. As far as actual editing goes, thank goodness I have a very fine editor whose command of the English language I applaud.
As a judge on the poetry panel of the HubPatron of the Arts contest, what will you be looking for in entries?
Creativeness, breath, heart and soul. I am not so much stuck on rhyme as opposed to flowing prose. Words that reach out and touch my soul and make me feel what they are trying to convey to their reader is very important to me. I want to feel their passion, see and feel the tears if it’s a heart wrenching scribe. I want my heart to beat a little faster as I devour each word they pen. I want to feel the artistry and see it on the page. Am I asking too much? I don’t think so. A poem has to stir something in the reader. If the reader feels nothing, then the poem is meaningless. So I will be looking for a combination of all these artistic expressions. Joy, Love, Sadness, excitement, passion, soul, tears, earnestness, beauty, ugliness, colors, shadows, death, life… and more.
What advice do you have for aspiring poets on HubPages- and beyond?
I would encourage them all to not lose sight of their passion or goals. Keep writing, keep writing, follow your dreams. Never give up and never listen to a negative thought from a person who may say “you have no talent” don’t listen to Nay sayers. Follow your heart and listen to your soul and write from the pit of your gut. Take a deep breath before you begin to write, choose a peaceful, quiet setting, close your eyes and let your Muse speak to your soul. Then, WRITE, WRITE, WRITE….
For more information on the HubPatron of the Arts contest, visit the official contest page.