Rising Writers #3 – Megan Gillett

Who are you, where are you from, and what makes you tick?

I’m Megan Gillett (yes pronounced like the razor, because I AM the best a man can get… stop laughing…) and I come from the South of England (near Stonehenge is how I describe it to my gorgeous Welsh friends who have like NO idea). What makes me tick? God knows! Life, I guess…

Why do you write? What got you started?

My muuuuummmy … like seriously I’m that stereotypical. However, she used to write my sister and I stories when we were little and illustrate them (slightly less stereotypical) and that was like our ONLY form of entertainment as we didn’t have a TV (very un-stereotypical). So yeah I picked it up off of her.

Who are your biggest influences? Inside and out of literature.

As I am well known for my depressing poetry everyone jokes about my inspiration being Sylvia Plath but I do think she’s amazeballs… at poetry like (my plan is to not follow the rest of her life choices!) My uncle recently published his quad-trilogy (a trilogy in four books, something the sci-fi world has recently succumbed to after ‘Hitch-hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’) and he has always kept me going through those tough times when I just can’t even think… can’t even English. He’s managed to make even those times seem like good times in his book and he self-published and believed in himself… *break into Disney song about believing in self* (His first book is called ‘Snare of Shadows’ if anyone is even mildly interested/read this far, which I congratulate you, I’m not as interesting as I thought I was, haha)

sylvia plath poet

What would be your favourite poem?

My favourite poem… Hmmm… I’m going to have to go for two I think. Number One, my good old friend Sylvia, ‘Tulips’ even though my assignment on her got me the worst grade I’ve ever got, I just can’t be bitter. And then Spike Milligans’ ‘Fred Fernarckerpan’ which goes:

I am a mystery fellow,
I’m Fred Fernackerpan,
I wear one sock that’s yellow
The other dipped in jam.
I walk about the countryside I walk about the town,
Sometimes with my trousers up And sometimes with them down;
And when they were up they were up
And when they were down they were down
And when they were only half way up
I was arrested. 

Top five novels/story collections?

My first one always has to be ‘The Green Mile’ (Stephen King). I genuinely don’t know why anymore but it’s become my answer for what is your favourite novel. I mean it is great and it follows my theme of depressing creation is the only creation, but it’s probably not the best thing I have ever read. I just think it probably has something for everyone – it’s not a hard read and it’s got a magic mouse in it… what more can one want? I recently read ‘Flowers for Algernon’ (Daniel Keyes) which is the most depressing thing that was ever created but the most thrilling read if you’re as fanatical about language as I am (yes I am that cool!) Then to lighten things up I’ve got to throw in some Terry Prachett (the true love of my life) with ‘Thief of Time’ and some Douglas Adams with ‘The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul’. And to round it all off, and to remind myself that I’m a girl we’re going to go with ‘Cross Stitch’ (Diana Gabaldon… she’s like really good friends with George R. R. Martin… an interesting and completely useless fact for you all). You know what I love about that book? The love interest; he has a Scottish accent. That is all.

Do you have a favourite song lyric?

I used to be obsessed with song lyrics. Like 100% obsessed. I wanted them tattooed all over my body. Thank goodness that my parents said no. Otherwise Taylor Swift would be my body artist. Thankfully I have moved on from that obsession although I still like lyrics. I’m going to go with a little Regina Spektor because I just want to do a stupid dance when I hear her: “I’ve got a perfect body/ but sometimes I forget/ I’ve got a perfect body/ ‘cause my eyelashes catch my sweat.” ‘Cause who doesn’t like a lyric, with sweat in it (yeah I half rhymed that shit. I’m a poet and I fuckin’ knew it! … I need to spend some time with some people…)

P.S. What I get from that lyric is your body is perfect. Which is kind of nice…

What inspires you/where do you find inspiration most? Are there any themes you feel particular affinity for? Political, personal, etc.

I am literally known for writing the most depressing poems ever. Like literally. I don’t understand but I cannot do anything but write depressing poetry – everything depressing just inspires me… I swear I’m not a really melodramatic teenager, like I have aged… but not my poetic content. Soz.

Do you have a specific technique, or routine to your writing?

Think “now that would depress everyone I’ll write a poem about that”. Sit down write out a draft on my laptop. Then re-write it with pretty language. Then read it out loud, smile because I will make everyone cry and then drink their tears… what?

Where are you with your writing right now?

Right now? I’m thinking about writing a poem about rainbows and lollipops… I don’t think it’s going to go down well. Nah, I really don’t know what I’m doing. I’m spending a lot of time freaking out about third year and what to write my Writing Project – specifically something that won’t make the marker give me an awful grade and possibly something that won’t make them want to kill themselves.

What are your plans for the future? What’s the ultimate goal?

My ultimate goal is to finish Uni… like I have NOT thought beyond that. Do I have to do that? Like stop forcing me to think about serious things! GAAAAAAWD!

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

a)write what you want to because it’ll make you happy (and possibly other people very UNHAPPY, awkward.) b)you don’t have to do anything with it, but if you want to there are  so many opportunities so just go for it. and finally c)I run a Writing Workshop… you should come so I’m not alone… what?

Make up your own question to ask yourself. I am that lazy.

My own question to myself is why are you so damn awesome – my answer is “I don’t know, I just can’t help it.” My other question is are you as lazy as Morgan, and my answer is “I am SO much more lazy… I really don’t know how I have found the motivation to fill in this questionnaire, I must really be very bored this holiday!

You’ve met the lady, now meet the literature…

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