Steven Herrick

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Hooray! A new poet profile. Please welcome the very talented Steven Herrick to blogland.

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What poets did you enjoy reading as a child?

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I didn’t actually read any poetry as a child. The only books I read were ‘football’ magazines and related books. I started enjoying poetry in Year Ten when I discovered Bruce Dawe and Judith Wright. I hated studying poetry, but loved reading them.

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Do you remember the first poem that you ever wrote? How old were you? Can you share it with us?

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I was eighteen years old and it was a poem called ‘love is like a gobstopper’. I sent it off to a poetry magazine and a few months later, they sent me an acceptance letter and  cheque for five dollars! I couldn’t believe anyone would be interested in what I wrote, much less pay for it! Unfortunately, I lost the poem. But, I later re-wrote it (from what I could remember) and included it in my first verse-novel for young adults, ‘love, ghosts and nose hair’. www.stevenherrick.com.au/nosehair.htm

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Do you write mostly in rhyme or in free verse? Do you know why?

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Always free verse. Because I’m trying to accurately capture the ‘voice’ of each of the characters in my verse-novels or poetry collections… and we don’t talk in rhyme, so I don’t write like that.

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Are your poems best performed aloud or read quietly to oneself? Can you provide an example?

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Some are best performed

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x3jZyonew2Y

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w0wDzoeIFPU&feature=related

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Some are best read from the page

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http://www.stevenherrick.com.au/river.htm

http://www.stevenherrick.com.au/bunyip.htm

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and, hopefully, some work both ways

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BmoTMJ8BxJw

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6xeIkFLVNFI

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Who first published your poetry?

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I did! I self-published two small chapbooks ‘the esoteric herrick’ and ‘sick in my espresso’ and then the Melbourne poet Pi-O published a chapbook of mine titled ‘didn’t vomit once’.

My first full-length book was ‘caboolture’ published by Five Islands Press.

My first book for young people was ‘water bombs’ by Jamroll Press (Leonie Tyle and Robyn Sheahan-Bright) and was later re-published by UQP.

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Where else have your poems been published?

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I’ve had sixteen books of poetry published by either UQP or Allen & Unwin. I’ve also had seven books published in the USA (with Simon & Schuster; or Front Street Press), one in the UK (with Egmont) and three in The Netherlands (with Lemniscaat).

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Anthologies are often places for poets to seek publication. How would you suggest a new poet find out about upcoming anthologies?

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I’m sorry I can’t really answer that as I don’t send poems to anthologies.

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Have you published a collection of your own poems/story in verse/verse novel? Where would we find a copy?

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Water Bombs (UQP) 1995  – poems for YA

love, ghosts and nose hair (UQP) 1996 – verse-novel for YA

my life my love my lasagne (UQP) 1997 – poetry for children

a place like this (UQP) 1998 – verse-novel for YA

poetry, to the rescue (UQP) 1998 – poetry for children

the spangled drongo (UQP) 1999 – verse-novel for children

the simple gift (UQP) 2000 – verse-novel for YA

love poems and leg-spinners (UQP) 2001 – poetry for children

Tom Jones Saves the World (UQP) 2002 – verse-novel for children

Do-wrong Ron (Allen & Unwin) 2003 – verse-novel for children

by the river (Allen & Unwin) 2004 – verse-novel for YA

naked bunyip dancing (Allen & Unwin) 2005 – verse-novel for children

lonesome howl (Allen & Unwin) 2006 – verse-novel for YA

Cold Skin (Allen & Unwin) 2007 – verse-novel for YA

Rhyming boy (UQP) 2008 – prose novel for children

Untangling spaghetti (UQP) 2009 – selected poems for children

SLICE (Woolshed Press Random House) 2010 – prose novel for YA

black painted fingernails (Allen & Unwin) 2011 – prose novel for YA

 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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What are you working on at the moment?

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I’m having a break from poetry. My last three books have been prose novels. My latest will be published this year with Allen & Unwin, titled ‘black painted fingernails’.

However, I am currently working on a verse-novel for children with the working title ‘Pouky Aleera is not my boyfriend

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Do you have a website/blog/facebook etc – where we can find out more about you?

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http://www.stevenherrick.com.au/

http://poetryfootballtravel.blogspot.com/

http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001962054584&sk=wall

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Do you have any favourite poetry websites?

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I enjoy my mate Roger Steven’s website,   http://poetryzone.woodshed.co.uk/index2.htm

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Would you like to share one of your poems with us?

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See YouTube and other links above.

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