JoeyPinkney.com Exclusive Interview
5 Minutes, 5 Questions With…
Kendra Wisdom Durand, author of Turiya: A Collection of Wordizms
A book chock full of an eclectic collection of politically progressive poetry and short stories swathed in cultural awareness with original photography woven throughout.
Joey Pinkney: Where did you get the idea and inspiration to write Turiya: A Collection of Wordizms?
Kendra Wisdom Durand: The structure of the book was loosely inspired by Jean Toomer’s Cane. The ingredients combined to compose most of my short stories was taken from my study of folklore, psychology, and the way in which traditional black communities tolerate change. However, my poetry covers everything under the sun. I use people, places and things that I am familiar with to create fictional tales of life experiences.
JP: What sets Turiya: A Collection of Wordizms apart from books?
KWD: I have been told that the structure of this book is unique. Combining poetry and short stories in one book is risky for a first time self published author, but one that I undertook with joy.
JP: As an author, what are the keys to your success that lead to Turiya: A Collection of Wordizms getting out to the public?
KWD: Authorhouse offered assistance in getting the book in the hands of online distributors, however getting the book on the shelves of bookstores was left solely up to me. As a first time self-published author, I am still learning the trade of marketing my book. I am looking to hire an agent for future projects. Until then, I will continue to sell my book on 125th Street in Harlem, at Venice Beach in LA, attend book fairs across the country, get my book on the tables of street vendors who sell books all over the city and use the internet to boost sells. Cultural events like Kwanzaa can also be used as a resource.
JP: As an author, what is your writing process? How long did it take for you to start and finish Turiya: A Collection of Wordizms?
KWD: My writing process consists of filling up the page with stream of conscious thoughts then going back to revise. I use my Blackberry to type in poems that come to me as I ride the subway or walk down the street. I began this book project on April 1st and it was completed by June 13th.
JP: What’s next for Kendra Wisdom Durand?
KWD: My work has been selected to appear in the anthology “Voices, a collection of poetic works” by White Oaks Publishing. I have a second book of poetry waiting to be published. I have Â½ a book written called Still Standing based on a fictional New Orleans family trapped in the attic during Hurricane Katrina. I am determined to one day be listed in Oprah Winfrey’s book club. Until that day comes I will keep pushing forward to get my voice in print.
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