Terrie Leigh Relf: What are your daily writing rituals? How do you prepare your space for these activities?
Sunny Rey: No rituals really. It has to be aching to be told, an angst, a lover, a muse – or a moment that I will to extend – are some motives behind writing for me. Nothing too much short of.
TLR: What genres do you write in?
SR: My poetry is what has brought most attention and publication, though I enjoy attempting screen plays and novels. I am naturally able to write poetry a hell of a lot better than a novel. When I feel like a challenge, or a beating, or a stretch, I write novels. When I need to release with ease, poetry is my confidant.
TLR: Do you have a “day job” in addition to being a writer? How do you balance your creative and work time?
SR: Writing and single-mommy-hood are my time keepers. I tour my book, show to events, read at schools, library tours, coffee shops, and bars. I currently have my hand in a need collaboration with a local artist and Visual SD shop painting utility boxes and working with the artist to incorporate my poetry into the Visual Public Art Project. The city has been kind enough to carve out a budget for the artist, and this has been soaking up a lot of my time – and happily so. My unrelated/related work background is working with disabled children and adults and with our homeless community. When I am not stroking the 9-5 in this area, I set aside time to volunteer with groups in the same vein, as it is important to me to not let go of a strong sense of community and to be connected with the issues of today in the NOW.
TLR: What tips do you have for other writers?
SR: When you are ready to publish and take yourself serious, become completely obsessed with that goal. There will be no time for friends or even booze; those things are part of the story and the inspiration, but when it comes down to producing and manifesting the beast, you’ll have to put that all on the shelf and tackle until complete. I would suggest weekly goals of submission to contests and publishers, as well as an amount of useful contacts you plan on making. Also have a goal of how many events of other writers you’ll attend that week or month. Have a daily goal of pages you’ll write or edit, but don’t spend too much time on the editing; someone else will do that later.
TLR: What are your thoughts on the creative process in general and your creative process in particular
SR: I have always gotten farther with a muse. Now that muse is often in the form of an unobtainable lover for me, a person I ache to impress. But at other times, it has been someone working against me, a person I keep in mind that I would love to piss off by actually making it at this “writer thing.” Also, the vision of myself older, imagining all the things I want to do for that future self, the moments I want to have to make her so fucking proud and laugh and relaxed knowing I lived the way I really wanted to. And in private quiet moments, my children are my muse, though most of those writings are for them alone.
TLR: Where do your ideas come from? What inspires you? Intrigues you?
SR: Emotions. Love and injustice. Also watching life unfold little secrets to me, and seeing dramas play out long term; those things inspire me. I am a lover of life – truly – through the awfully painful and the brilliantly lovely times, all of it thrills me and draws me to celebrate my interpretation of it in words.
TLR: What interview question would you most like to be asked? Least?
SR: I like being asked my advice for other writers, because that is what I seek answers for myself. There is nothing I have been asked that rubbed me wrong; like a lot of writers, I don’t mind talking about myself and fancy the experience for what it is.
TLR: What about upcoming publications? Gallery shows? Awards and other accolades?
SR: I would love for you to follow the Visual Public Art Project on Facebook and Instagram as well as add my fan Facebook page 1 to read upcoming events from my book, Quotes and Poems by a Nobody and news regarding my sophomore book, ROT.
My first book was on display at the public library downtown this last year, which was quite the honor, and still hanging around its shelves if you’re interested in loaning it out.
TLR: What are you working on now?
SR: I have finished up my second book, ROT, and it looks like Puna Press is interested in it. This is very exciting for me to switch publishers for my second book (First book was with Garden Oak Press) in hopes to draw a new audience in.
TLR: Where do you see yourself as a writer in five years? Ten?
SR: I believe highly in myself and in the beast that is driving me to fiercely fight and write. In five years, I suspect I will be on book four or five and will have tackled a novel out of myself to completion. In ten years, I hope people discover my first book and see a ton of progress.
TLR: Anything else you’d like to add that I haven’t asked?
SR: I’d like to add my gratitude to you, for the time spent in reaching out, seeking and setting up a blog to interview us writers at. It’s refreshing to see someone interested in the scene and doing something productive with that interest.
Also my book can be found in Barnes and Noble, online on Amazon, on my publishers website GardenOakPress.com and locally at Bluestocking in Hillcrest and Upstart Crow in Seaport Village if supporting is your thing.
TLR: Thank you for being part of my interview series – and for your kind words. You may remember my earlier series at sdwriters.com, which has closed its cyber doors. As I say often: People both inspire and fascinate me!