08 November 2013

Meet Robert A. Friedl: The Poet Who Doesn't Know Holmes (or the Doctor)

The poet doesn't invent.  He listens. 
~ Jean Cocteau

In November, I am continuing to participate in the Two Pages-a-Day writing challenge.  And I must have been abducted by aliens who replaced my brain with rocks, because I’m also doing NaNoWriMo for the first time.  Someone get this girl a drink!!

riters are a great breed ~ funny, imaginative, moody, adventurous . . . and that’s all before the caffeine, nicotine, and cocktail  buzz sets in.

Oh, wait.  That’s just me.

Minus the nicotine.  Just, ewww.

Poets, like their art form, are also a great breed of writer.  They play with words, much like other writers do, but with a lot more flexibility and rule-breaking.  They’re like the yoga babes of writing.  

Yoga poet ~ I like that.

Yesterday, I introduced you to his poetry.  Today, instead of my usual Top Five, I bring you the man behind Adventure, Love, and Airplanes: Mr. Robert A. Friedl.

Image credit: R.A. Friedl
Why do you write poetry?
All forms of art are methods of expressing oneself. Good music affects your mood, great songs will stir your heart, pictures will frame a new perspective on something, and poetry is the language of great feelings and strong emotion.

For me, it just so happens that poetry is the form of artistic expression at which I suck the least.  Also, I’ve discovered that poetry is how I pray.

Name two mentors who influenced your poetry.
My older brother John, for sure. He’s got a very clear mind for communication, and he does not abide bullshit. At the same time, he loves using words as art. And I guess I should clarify: I don’t really identify as a poet.

I like to write, but I consider the field of poetry to be a playground for people who know a heck of a lot more about what they’re doing than I do.

As far as a second mentor… all my high school English teachers.

Name 5 poets or writers you recommend
Dude! I’d love to!

Bill Waterson:            My family grew up on Calvin & Hobbes, and no one speaks like Bill Waterson.
John C. Maxwell:       Fantastic observations on human psychology and leadership.
John Eldredge:          Wild at Heart
Orson Scott Card:      You can’t beat the Ender’s Game series!
John Irving:               I think he’s a terrible story-teller, but his writing is phenomenal.

What does your writing space look like?
Actually, I write most effectively while sitting in bed, propped against a pile of pillows with a plate of cookies and a bottle of root beer on hand.

Give 2-3 pieces of advice for poets.
First of all, poetry is about feeling. So pick a topic that you feel strongly about.

Secondly, listen to feedback. Ask for honest critiques and look for ways to get better. Expand your knowledge-base and seek out new forms of writing.

And finally, this is art. Everyone has their own way, and you can’t please them all. Find your style, refine it, and when someone can’t find anything nice to say about it, tell them to piss off.

Favorite Doctor?
Doctor Paul Farmer is one of the most incredible individuals I’ve ever had the honor to meet. I aspire to emulate his example of selfless service to fellow humans.

Somewhere, a sonic screwdriver just burst into flames.
Image Credit: Fanpop.com
 Oh, dear, Robert.  Well, not everyone can be a Whovian, I suppose.  I still like your poetry.

Favorite Holmes?
Holmes? What’s that?

Every Cumberbabe's reaction.
Image Credit: Fanpop.com

Oh myyyyyy.

Thanks for stopping by La Belle, Robert!  It was great to meet you and read your poetry.  Good luck with your next collection of poetry!  And, uh, some words of advice:  Netflix, Dr. Who, and BBC's Sherlock Holmes.

You'll thank me later.

Oremus pro invicem,
~ Mikaela

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