Hi, all! A lot of people are sick of hearing about Valentine’s Day, but I have a special treat for you! Dark poet Julie Thielen is our guest today. Join me as we delve into her psyche and learn what inspires her tortured verses. To make this even more exciting, we’re giving away a free, signed copy of her book Deteriorate. All you have to do is show support is any form. Like or comment this blog, like or comment the relevant postings on Facebook. Show some love for a poet… a crusader in an arguably dying art! I’ll keep a list of all the names and draw a lucky winner when we have enough contestants! And now, onto the main attraction…
When did you first start writing? Were there any incidents in your life that made you want to write?
When I was 15 I said one evening, “I want to write poetry.” Just like that. It was about 7 in the evening, and I was sitting on my bed doing homework. So I picked up a pen and that’s just what I did. Oh, my early works were terrible! Truly cringe-worthy. I’ve been writing since, so that would be 25 years now.
I’d dabbled in writing from the age of 6 onwards. Little short stories and snippets of things. They never ‘felt right’ stylistically, but I knew words were my game. When I started writing poetry it was as if I saw the moon for the first time. (Being Gothic from age 14 on, that’s a pretty amazing feeling.)
Who are some of your favorite poets?
To be blunt, I hate 99% of poetry for the same reasons everyone else hates poetry. The only other poet I really click with is Pablo Neruda.
Do you care whether or not your words reach a large-scale audience, or does it gratify you simply to see your poems in print?
Of course every writer wants to see his or her work appreciated in a broad spectrum, but truly, I’m happy seeing my work in print. I never expected to be rich or famous because of my poetry. That simply isn’t the way the world works anymore, sadly.
Have there been particular books, paintings, music, or films which have influenced your work?
All of the above! Mostly music. Nearly every single piece of poetry I’ve written has “inspired by” and the name of a song, album, person, piece of art, etc at the bottom. I’m a mood writer, not a rote one. I pick up the pen when words collide in my brain and insist on bleeding from my pen, not as an exercise in creative writing.
In my opinion, your poems are the raw expressions of a sensitive woman, spoken straight from the heart. Do you think most people can relate to your poetry? Or do you think it’s too dark for a mainstream audience?
Both really. But a large portion of the population can’t get past the… shall we say ‘vivid’ imagery in order to absorb the heart of what I’m conveying. Those who can absolutely relate.
Any plans for a new collection?
I have been trying to get a second collection done for 3 years now, but I have the worst luck with illustrators/artists. I’ve lost 4 so far. My work is very visual and I am not comfortable presenting it to the public sans illustrations.
You’re not just a poet; you’re crafty in other ways, too. Care to tell us about your Cafepress shop?
It’s my side job, so to speak. I create designs and/or slogans, or work with public domain images, and upload the images onto various products for purchase. I offer t-shirts, hats, sweatshirts, cards, journals, mugs, hats, clocks, mousepads, and so much more. I have something for nearly everyone from, to quote Bjork, the gentle to the hardcore.
Where can my readers purchase your book?
First try me. I often have some copies on hand to personally sign and send. Otherwise you can find all 3 formats (paperback, PDF, and Adobe) on Lulu.com.
All the poems in Deteriorate are illustrated with gorgeous artwork by Kimberlee Traub. It is an excellent collection and a favorite on my own personal bookshelf. Want a free, signed copy? Like or comment this blog and you’ll be entered for a chance to win! Here’s a taste of what’s inside:
I trace the features of your beautiful face lightly with my fingertips,
leaving behind bloody trails on your frozen white skin
I told you I loved you, but
you didn’t love me back
I told you I needed you, but you didn’t need me
When I saw that beautiful mouth form those ugly words
something in me snapped
I never meant to hurt you.
I only meant to love you.
When I saw those clutching hands reaching for your throat
I tried to scream,
I tried to warn you
But then I realized that those hands were mine
Nausea almost knocked me down but
the silky feel of your flesh drew me back in
Once I started touching I couldn’t stop
I never meant to hurt you, I swear it
All I wanted was to be near you
to touch you
I didn’t know I was Beatrice’s Daughter
As I pressed my lips to your face I was surprised to feel it so cold
I called your name but you didn’t move
I reached out to shake you
but my hands were bloody and I couldn’t hold on
Your hand slipped from my grasp,
my hands too wet to clutch
Please forgive me
Oh god, please forgive me
I never meant to hurt you
(not like you hurt me)
I only wanted to keep you
And when you turned to run I…I…