We offer our first and exclusive Q&A Interview with Gerry Stefanson, a writer whose literary works have been featured on our Spillwords pages as well as being Author of the Month of May 2022.
What does it mean to be selected as Author of The Month?
It is the recognition I receive from readers, writers, friends, family, Spillwords, and the validation of what I do, is the icing on the cake. Not to mention, the “Bragging Rights” of being chosen for Author of the Month.
How have your friends and/or family influenced your writing?
They are the frontline fodder for material (knowingly or not), and they morph into my work. My wife is fully supportive, and even though she claims “I just don’t get It;” which is cool, as she spoils me anyways. Our daughter is pleased with my work and likes that I include her family in the palette of my endeavors. My friends are delightful and very encouraging. Kudos to my friend Cyril, who allows my inner “Luddite” to muddle through. He picks up all the pieces and keeps the gears working.
What inspires you to write?
Just about everything. Nothing is sacred or safe. Life serves me up a bountiful banquet of choice – the good, bad, ugly, joy, grief, and utter tragedy.
What was your writing catalyst?
Thought, sifted through contemplation, research, tempered by poor judgment, and lack of fear.
Tell us a little bit about your writing process?
My moon and stars align when the groundwork is done. I start by compiling my notes. Then, out of the blue, I may pen a poem or three on that theme. Some works I tuck away in a bottom drawer for a time or file it in the coals of the fireplace. Some, I twist over for days, weeks, and even months. Others, I submit them on the spot!
What would you say is most fulfilling about writing?
When I read a new piece out loud, and like it to the bitter end. When a piece of work is published or presented live, then we are partners for life. The best part is when someone “gets” my work.
Does the addition of imagery help to tell your story?
Yes, I always try to paint the background as well as, the foreground in my work. I appreciate the art imagery that Spillwords partners my writing with.
What is your favorite reading genre?
I enjoy historic novels with good accuracy. History, a Malcolm Gladwell work or a similar effort. Jimmy Buffett (check him out – best-seller fact & fiction, great short stories, fabulous songwriter/ poet) – more than a Cheeseburger! Robert Service (keeps me humble – the peoples’ poet) and pails of poetry and stories.
What human being has inspired you the most?
This is a tough one, as I could name one from each century. From my time spinning around the sun, Obama inspires me.
What message would you have for the Spillwords Press community that voted for you?
Many thanks for their support and to them read/write more. That is where the magic is.
What would you like your legacy as a writer to be?
To write something that speaks to the heart of the reader.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Writing is a wonderful adventure. Finding a home for it – is a privilege. Having Spillwords – a gift, and their support – an honor.
Born and raised on the prairies of Manitoba Canada, along the Red River and just south of Lake Winnipeg. Then Alberta and ten years in the Rockies, just above Montana. The last decade in the Canadian Gulf Islands. People, ideas and stories set the stage of my poetry and writing. Music and art fill my days and verse fills my head. I feel the fortunate one and share this world with my life partner.