Meet Luke Wood, this weeks guest and author of the poetry book, Approaching Humanity!
How old are you?
I am 24 and I’ll be 25 in August
Where are you from?
I’m from and currently living in Lynchburg, Virginia and looking to possibly relocate by the end of the year
How long have you been writing?
I started writing poems at 14, essays at 18 (not counting high school/college assignments), short stories at 20
What genre do you prefer to write in?
With poems I prefer to write from raw emotions, short stories I prefer to write something that teaches a life lesson by the end of the story.
Hatred, the poem you wrote for the writing challenge was powerful. What was the topic of most of your poems?
Thank you for the compliments regarding “Hatred” Many of my poems are based and inspired by basic human emotions. My narrative poems are usually based off personal experiences or experiences of people I know, they narrative poems usually have a dark setting and leave hope for the reader by the end of the poem
What inspired Approaching Humanity?
How did you come up with the title?
After completing my fifth poetry book
Aspects of Love I had several poems that were written but never used for my books, they were great poems, just didn’t fit the themes of my books. Two poems I had written that I felt could go in a book together was “Porcelain” and “The Only One” Shortly after I wrote the poems “Conspiracies” “To the Brain” and “Get Back Up” I felt the theme was how we are all human, we make mistakes but we all learn from our mistakes.
After coming up with the theme I needed a title for the book, I always play around with words until I feel I have a title that is artistic and can sell the book. The original title was My Own Mortality then became Becoming Human and then I finalized with the title Approaching Humanity
Are the poems based off someone you know, or events in your own life?
A combination of both, “The Only One” was originally a poem titled “Now that you’re Gone” that was from a very personal experience and I altered it into a guy losing his girlfriend in an accident. “Restored” is inspired by many around me, the poem is about how there are good people in this world and I’m fortunate that those who inspired it are a part of my life. “Conspiracies” and “Sobriety” were both experiences from friends of mine.
What books have influenced your life most?
Eat More Chicken by S. Truett Cathy, founder of Chik-fil-A, it’s a very inspiring story, Jesus Freaks by dc Talk, it is a collection of stories of Christians who go to any length to defend their Christian Faith. Man Called Cash biography of Johnny Cash
Are there any new authors who have grasped your interest?
I’m fortunate enough to be friends with several authors, one of them is Criss Jami, his most recent book Venus In Arms is an incredible collection of poetry, I envy his writing skills. He is currently working on a new poetry book. Another is Ray Labuen my last book was a co written book with him titled Wretched Scars he’s working on his first book. Haley Johnson is another she’s writing her first novel Lithia: Story of Eileen Not only do I get to call them great authors, I also get the privilege to call them friends.
What are your current projects?
I am currently promoting my latest poetry book Approaching Humanity I’m reprinting my first three poetry books (Notebook of the Mind, Shadows & Sunshine, and Awakening with the Sea) as one collection titled Re:GeNeSiS to commemorate five years since the release of my first book Notebook of the Mind that will be out in November. I’m currently working on my new short story collection titled Escape My Dreams which will be out next year. I’m also editing Haley Johnson’s first novel titled Lithia: Story of Eileen
Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
Sadly many might hate my answer but writing was my saving grace in middle school and high school. In my classes I hated reading the required reading which made my grades not so well, when it was time to for the writing assignment, I’d not only get high grades, but high compliments from my teachers, over the years writing gradually turned into a hobby, I ended up doing some books and attention started to increase.
Is there anything you find particularly find challenging in your writing?
As I venture outside of poetry, my biggest challenge is changing what I write. Example is my most recent book is poetry, my next book is short stories. Going from writing poems to short stories is always a challenge in the beginning. When I go from writing short stories to poems is an even bigger challenge because I’m using less words in my poems.
Who is your favorite author and what really strikes you about their work?
As generic of an answer this may be, Lewis Carroll, everytime I read his work I always find something I didn’t find before.
What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Every poetry book I set myself a goal to put 50 poems in the book, until this book I had never been successful with this goal, I made a promise to myself that I would not release this book until I had 50 quality poems. I wrote 67 poems for this book and I chose the best 50 for the book.
Did you learn anything from writing the book and what was it?
I learned that my writing can show great improvements throughout writing a book, I also learned that inspiration can come from anything at anytime.
Do you have any advice for other authors?
No matter how well known or how successful you are, you can always learn from the experiences of other authors. Also never stop learning to improve your writing
Do you have anything specific you want to say to your readers?
I want you to know no matter what you are going through I can promise you that you are NEVER alone
If you could live anywhere, where would that be?
I’ve always wanted to live in Japan, a lot of my interests are based or inspired from Japanese culture