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?
My name is Angela Prendergast and I am 23 years old.
Fiona: Where are you from?
I am from a small town outside of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Fiona: A little about yourself (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I am a high school English teacher and author of poetry collection, “Overthought Thoughts of a 21-Year-Old.” Writing has always been my passion. I majored in English at Millersville University of Pennsylvania and I am currently enrolled in a graduate program at St. Joseph’s University for a M.A. in Writing Studies.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I am currently working on writing a sequel to my first poetry collection. The sequel is called, “Overthought Thoughts of a 23-Year-Old.” I think the first title sets up a great opportunity to have multiple collections. Stay tuned. J
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I began writing seriously my junior year of college. I used it as an outlet to help with feelings. I was away from my family and lived alone. Writing was my connection. Writing was my best friend. My journal started to look more and more legitimate as the year went on. Senior year of college I decided to start reaching out and learning how to publish my thoughts.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Probably when I officially published my poetry collection. Once people started to buy my book on Amazon I remember thinking…. “I am making money for writing in my diary…. how cool is that?!”
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
Rupi Kaur and her poetry collection, “Milk and Honey.” I read this book in one siting, curled up in the poetry section of Barnes and Noble. It did something to me. That was the summer I purchased a new writers notebook and started to take myself seriously.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
The title came to life when someone asked me what I write poetry about. My response was, “I write all the thoughts that come to my mind when I cannot fall asleep at night and my mind won’t stop worrying or searching through past mistakes.” I remember telling my friends it was a collection of me overthinking. Laughing, I realized this describes my book. It has no set theme for the poems. It is overthought thoughts of a young girl in her young adulthood trying to figure out life.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
I think my writing style could be considered random? Again, the overall effect of this book was to show that writing does not have to be something that is completely polished. In fact, I think it should be raw and unique. Writing does not have to fit inside a category.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
All of it. Every single poem is something that I have felt and experienced in my life. They are about my personal heartbreaks, friends, family members, myself. Every ounce of this book was inspired by someone or something I was feeling at the time. That is the most authentic way to write.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
I travel around my state but I do not venture very far. This is something I am still working on as an author. I think this will come about more as my bookreceives more publicity.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
I designed my own cover using Createspace, which recently switched to Amazon KDP. They give you ownership of your design and it is refreshing.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
The message is that you are not alone. Part of the reason I wanted to publish my poems was to help others. Loneliness, depression, insecurity, love; all these themes are so relatable. I wanted that high schooler or that 40-year-old widow to relate. The message can transfer to different age groups, genders, social classes. This is what makes this book so unique.
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?
Rupi Kaur. I love Jen Sincero as well. Her humour is contagious.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
Brendan, my boyfriend. He is my rock and supports me in any aspect of my life. He gives me confidence and makes me feel unstoppable as a woman.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
I would hope to say yes in the future… however, right now it is a hobby. I want it to be my career someday. I love writing and I want to spend my days practicing my calling.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Yes. I would add more people to the acknowledgment page. The people in my life are so beautiful and deserve all the recognition in the world.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
I learned so much about myself. How I love. How I think. How I reflect on life. I learned who I am as a writer and as a human being.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
Blake Lively. She is FABULOUS and I always looked up to her as a young girl in “Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.”
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Do not do anything that feels inauthentic or makes you feel uncomfortable. I was going to sign with a company that wanted to take a lot of money and promised some heavy things. If it feels wrong, it probably is. Go with your gut. Self-publishing is a great way to own your craft and be in complete control.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
You are beautiful and thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for taking the time to read my vulnerable thoughts.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
“A Lesson Before Dying.” I am teaching it to my Juniors in a few months and want to get a head start. It is good so far!
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Captain Underpants with my dad. I was told I was a bad reader by classmates in second grade. I cried to him and he said “Angel, let’s go read something you’ll like.” We had a schedule where we would read and laugh every Wednesday after school.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
My family and friends. I love relationships that can make me feel a multitude of feelings.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
Eminem. He is a word master, controversial, and unapologetic. He is one of the greatest poets and lyricists of all time.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
I love to play guitar, run, and write. 😀
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Gilmore girls with my sister, Victoria. We even bought matching shirts that say “Gilmore Girls.”
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
Pasta, I am a carb girl. It is the Italian in me! My favoritecolor is rose gold/pink. I love all genres! Country, rap, R&B, soft rock, pop, you name it. Why put yourself in a box?
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
Oh man. There is no future if that is the case.
Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?
Saying things I would regret not saying. Telling loved ones I love them. Apologizing for mistakes.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
A lover of all things genuine and kind.
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
My website and blog are both angelaprendergastpoetry.com