Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.
Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?
Hi, thank you so much for having me! My name is Julia Cirignano and I’m 22 years old.
Fiona: Where are you from?
I am from Boston.
Fiona: A little about yourself (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I was homeschooled through high school, and recently graduated from Endicott College. I love music, poetry, and riding horses.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I recently self-published I book of poetry called White Wine & Medical Marijuana.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I have always enjoyed writing since I started in school. I loved my English and Creative Writing classes. Although I believe I have always written poetry, I started out writing prose. I then started writing songs (since I am also a musician) andeventually found my true passion: poetry.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I have always been a writer.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I have always found inspiration within my own life and the lives of people around me. Although my life may not have always seemed or felt poetic, I managed to turn the bad things into something good: my poetry.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
I honestly couldn’t even tell you. I started with a bunch of cliché titles that I never felt attached to, and one day I just came up with “White Wine & Medical Marijuana”. I was probably smoking and drinking when it happened haha. I asked a bunch of friends and teachers at Endicott what they thought about it, and I guess I loved the reaction I got. I can’t say I really thought it through very well, I just went with my gut.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
I love the new fashion of simplistic poetry that’s all over the place now. I personally love to read and write in free verse, so I’m glad that that’s in style right now. I have never been a fan of rhyming, or using any type of poetic meter. I mean, writing that way can be fun, but I have found that my poems come out better when I don’t worry about such things.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
I would say about 97%. Some minor facts were changed or exaggerated, but almost everything within this book comes straight from my life, or the lives of people close to me.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
I wouldn’t say that you need to travel to write, but the growing I did when I traveled defiantly helped me bothas a writer and as a person. I think life experience is incredibly important to being a writer, but that can happen anywhere. I recently studied abroad in Italy, and grew so much through my travels in Europe. I wrote both during and after this experience. I think writing in the moment and reflection writing are both important in their own right.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
The front and back cover of my book were designed by the amazing Emily Surabian. She put so much time and energy into several designs for this book, and I am so happy with the one we went with.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I didn’t go into this book with one concept in mind, but there are several different types of suffering that I cover in this book. I hope that my readers can seek comfort in the relatability of these more painful poems, and that they will also recognize the feeling of empowerment and hope that I cover in the last few poems. One big disclaimer I would like to say though is that you do not need to drink or smoke to appreciate my poetry. My work is more than just a showy title.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest? Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?
I have sooo many favorite writers. In terms of new writers though, I am obsessed with Rupi Kaur, Lang Leav, Michael Faudet, and many more.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
I have received so much support from fellow writers and my Professors at Endicott. Danial Sklar, Charlotte Gordon, Elizabeth Winthrop, Doug Holder, and Samuel Alexander, just to name a few.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Yes. I mean, I don’t make as much money writing right now as I wish I could, but if you put real effort into your writing you will get results. Part of it is about writing well, but an even bigger part of writing as a career is learning to sell yourself. Now this can be pretty weird at first, but I’ve learned that there are a lot of people out there that love my book or could love my book, and I have made a career out of finding them.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
There are a few minor changes, but nothing big. I did a lot of editing and cutting down when I was working on my book, so in looking back I might not have cut so many poems out. Hopefully some of them will make the cut for my next book! I am happy to say that I have made peace with this book, and I am now excited to challenge myself and write an even better book.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
I have learned so much through the writing, publishing, and marketing of this book. While many writers have the experience of writing and editing, I self-published my book so I did EVERYTHING. The whole experience has been so rewarding. I love being part of self-publishing from the beginning to the end (which actually doesn’t exist became I will never stop trying to sell people my book haha)
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Keep writing. Keeping trying to publish your work. Don’t let rejection letters get you down. I repeat DON’T LET REJECTION LETTERS GET YOU DOWN. Really though like have a glass a wine and just keep writing.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Enjoy my book! And if you do (or if you don’t) let me know! J
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
The Beautiful and The Damned.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
I don’t know. As a little kid my favorite books wereMadeline and The Giving Tree, so probably one of those.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Everything makes me laugh. I don’t usually cry.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
Kurt Cobain. Reason: I’m obsessed.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
Writing poetry 😉
And riding horses. That’s really all I do.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I’m definitely more of a TV show person. I have so many favorites but here’s a few: One Tree Hill, Friends, Orange Is the New Black, Gossip Girl, The Office, Scandal, Power, Luther, Weeds,and Skins.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
I love all food, no joke. All meats and sweets.
I like purple. I really don’t like turquoise.
I love rock music and hip hop the most, but I enjoy all types of music.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
I would keep riding horses and probably find some other creative outlet.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
Once I settle on a quote that’s good enough to tattoo on myself, I will get back to you.
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
I post on my book’s Facebook page the most, but I also regularly post on Instagram, Twitter, and Tumblr.
Email address: Jciri341@mail.endicott.edu
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/WhiteWineMedical/
Official Website: https://www.juliacirignano.com
Here is the link to my Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Julia-Cirignano/e/B074ZKGDBP/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1