We offer our first and exclusive Q&A Interview with Freya Pickard, a writer whose literary works have been featured on our Spillwords pages as well as being Author of the Month of July 2022.
What does it mean to be selected as Author of The Month?
It means everything to me! To have my poetry read and appreciated by complete strangers is an accolade that keeps me writing and keeps me creative.
How have your friends and/or family influenced your writing?
My mother taught me how to read and write when I was 2 years old so I owe her a huge debt as books have always been a large part of my life. I am, however, an independent spirit, and have always resisted being influenced too much by anyone – I prefer to forge my own way ahead in life and in writing.
What inspires you to write?
The words are always there, begging to be given form. Sometimes they come out in the form of poetry, sometimes in prose. Writing is as natural as breathing to me. When I can’t write I feel suffocated and frustrated.
What was your writing catalyst?
Reading fantasy books from authors such as Weis & Hickman, David Eddings, Anne McCaffrey, Terry Brooks, Tad Williams, Ursula K Le Guin and JRR Tolkien enabled me to create my own fantastical worlds in my teenage years.
Tell us a little bit about your writing process?
Prose: I have an idea. I write it down. When I have enough ideas so that a pattern forms or the ideas appear to be linked, I tease out main storyline. I make notes on the characters who emerge. When the ideas stop appearing I re-read all my notes and hammer out a final plot plan and divide the story into chapters. Then, I sit down, listen to Disturbed, and start writing the first chapter… Poetry: Sometimes the poems just appear when I’m walking or cooking or just idling in the garden. Sometimes I go in search of a poem and go for a walk or very still. Most of the time, the poem finds me.
What would you say is most fulfilling about writing?
Both the slightly inebriated sensation I get when I’m writing a first draft, where the words pour out and I’m left feeling somewhat drunk, and, also, when I’ve finalised a book and I know it is ready to be published.
Does the addition of imagery help to tell your story?
Not really. I have such vivid pictures of my characters and the landscapes through which they move that I don’t really need any external stimuli.
What is your favorite reading genre?
Definitely Fantasy because I love being taken to another world and spending time there.
What human being has inspired you the most?
My Soulmate because he has given me the freedom to write whatever I want and doesn’t judge me or ask me to justify anything I write about. He inspired the character of Lored in The Kaerling series and introduced me to heavy metal which I now use to write to.
What message would you have for the Spillwords Press community that voted for you?
Thank you for reading my poetry and accepting me for who I am. Thank you for taking the time to vote for me – this has inspired me to carry on writing poetry at a time when I was feeling very low about my writing ability.
What would you like your legacy as a writer to be?
Freya Pickard, Author of The Kaerling
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Thank you, Spillwords, for providing this amazing haven of imagery and words that I love to retreat to when I feel down and uncertain.
Pushcart Prize nominee, Freya Pickard, is the quirky, unusual author of The Kaerling series, an epic fantasy set in the strange and wonderful world of Nirunen. A cancer survivor, she writes mainly dark fantasy tales and creates expressive poetry in order to leach the darkness from her soul. Her aim in life is to enchant, entertain and engage with readers through her writing. She finds her inspiration in the ocean, the moors, beautifully written books and vinyl music (particularly heavy metal and rock). She enjoys Hatha Yoga, Bhangra and Yogalates and in her spare time creates water colours and pastel drawings of the worlds in her head.