Sunday, 16 August 2015

An interview with Sue Johnson... Author, Poet and Creative Writing Tutor

I am delighted to welcome Sue Johnson to the Hope and Dreams blog. It's great to have you here, Sue. Thank you for joining us.

Sue Johnson is published as a poet, short story writer and novelist. Her short stories have appeared in Woman, My Weekly, Woman's Weekly, Chat: it's Fate, Take a Break, The People's Friend, and That's Life - Australia.

Sue's novels Fable's Fortune and The Yellow Silk Dress; and a collection of poetry entitled Tasting Words, Hearing Colours are published by Indigo Dreams  


Creative Alchemy: 12 steps from inspiration to finished novel was published by HotHive Books in 2011 and Surfing the Rainbow; visualisation and chakra balancing for writers by Compass Books in 2013.

Sue enjoys running workshops, and giving talks to the W.I. and writers' groups. She is a Writing Magazine tutor on 4 of their home study programmes. 

How did you become a writer, Sue?

I've written since I learned how to hold a pen - and I told the teacher in 'that' lesson at school (when they ask you what you want to be when you grow up) that I wanted to write stories and draw pictures. She told me it wasn't a proper job and that I'd better write about being a nurse!"

Nursing is an excellent profession but I'm so pleased, Sue, that you didn't follow this advice. I'm sure your other readers are too.

Thank you, Sharon. I was told by several people that I couldn't be published as a poet and novelist. I immediately set out to prove them wrong. To date, I have published over 40 magazine short stories, 2 novels, lots of individual poems and a full collection, and several other books aimed at helping other writers.

Do you prefer to write fiction or poetry?

Many of my ideas for stories begin as poems. Since 1st January, 2013 I have written a poem a day every day. Some have been published as they are - others have becomes springboards for other ideas.

What do you find beautiful or inspiring?

I am greatly inspired by the natural world and get a lot of ideas when walking in the woods and fields in the Worcestershire countryside near where I live - and along the banks of the Avon.

I know you also love to read. What are you currently reading?

I have several books on the go - "The Last Runaway" by Tracy Chevalier, "Faery Tales" by Carol Ann Duffy and an Italian grammar book for a course I am doing.

Is there a particular author who has influenced your writing?

I'm inspired by a whole range of writers, artists and musicians. I am lucky to have the condition synaesthesia - I interpret many words and names as a specific taste - and this also helps with creating new ideas.

What advice would you give to someone who is starting out now as a writer or poet?

Keep writing. Don't give up. If you feel inspired by an idea, stick with it until you succeed.

Great advice, Sue! Finally, what are you writing at the moment?

I'm currently revising my 2nd poetry collection, and working on a non-fiction book aimed at helping other writers. In between times, I am gathering notes and information for another novel.

Congratulations, Sue, on your publishing success. I am looking forward to reading more of your work, and have enjoyed talking with you today. I hope you'll come back later, and tell us more.

Sue Johnson can also be found on Facebook Twitter and The Writer's Toolkit 

I hope you have a great week, Google+ Friends. Thank you for visiting the Hope and Dreams blog.