This week we are excited to feature writer Devon Balwit, author of The Bow Must Bear the Brunt, We are Procession, Seismograph, In Front of the Elements, How the Blessed Travel and Forms Most Marvelous. Her poems “Missing” and “pholcus” were featured on Dying Dahlia in July of 2016 as well as “Hive Sisters” in March of 2017.
What inspires you the most?
Overall, art, other poets, nature, and the news provide the bulk of my inspiration. That said, I’m open to anything–prompts, things my husband/friends/kids suggest, found poetry from street signs, etc. I’m always trying to shake things up–sometimes free verse, other times ghazals, sonnets, golden shovels, right/left justified poems, persona poems, etc.
Who are your favorite women writers?
Even though the casual anti-semitism of her journals bums me out, I love the work of Sylvia Plath. I also love Sharon Olds and Wislava Szymborska. (There are many modern female poets I love, but I would have to list every one so none felt left out!)
What does your writing process look like?
I write every day, both when I first wake up and when I get home from work. If I’m not creating new work, I’m revising old work. Every day. I wake up, look at the newspaper, see if there’s anything there that grabs me, look through FB feed (but quickly so I don’t get sucked into mindless scrolling), then to work.
What advice do you have for fellow women writers?
Send your work out again and again. Don’t be daunted by rejection. Trust your voice. Be persistent. Take up space.
What are you currently working on?
I’d love to get a second full-length collection picked up somewhere. I’m also working on giving more readings. I did two in November and am reaching out to more local venues. I hope to build a larger local audience.
Her book Motes at Play in the Halls of Light will be coming out in 2018 (Keslay Books).