with C.C. Tundra
Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?
C.C.: I started “writing” in middle school, technically, since that was when I bought my first journal at Walmart. It was huge and black and looked biblical, but nevertheless, I filled that book out mostly. Then I got another journal, a fancier one from Barnes and Noble, and then another one. I mostly wrote short stories, because as a person who likes to write scary stories, I find short stories the most efficient method of creating tension for the reader. Now, if we’re talking “poetry” that begins later, at least for the writing portion. I started listening to poetry in 9th grade, but didn’t really start writing it until the end of sophomore year, but I really started to dive into it in my Junior year of Highschool. One of my favorite book authors is Margaret Peterson Haddix, Suzanne Collins, Stephen King, Brandon Mull. As for poets, my biggest influence was, without a doubt, Sylvia Plath. She remains my favorite poet to this day, I have never felt like I related more to anyone else’s writing, she inspired and moved me so deeply when I was in the darkest mindset imaginable, and her words were like no other I had ever heard before. Then, of course, there is Edgar Allan Poe, whose short stories and poems both inspire me greatly. For me I will always love writing and reading dark poetry, because that is the most interesting form of writing. Emily Dickinson, Lord Byron, William Shakespeare, and of course there’s many other poets I love as well.
Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?
C.C.: My biggest influence today isn’t really a writer, because poetry has always been about the way I feel. If I feel like I need to write, then I guess a sort of anxiety, an overwhelming surge that rises up over my head – this is my inspiration at times. When the world seems to be too much, that I must organize the chaos on the page in a series of images, the swelling tension, the crippling sadness, or whatever other emotion I feel. Emotions guide my work, they shape the words and the stanzas, and if I am feeling really badly that I feel like I need to write, then I do. I do not care if the words seem too dark, to me expression is the most important thing in life, so much so that nothing else seems to matter. If I do not express exactly what I am feeling in some way, then those feelings become trapped inside, and poetry has always been a way to release those feelings.
Q3: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing/art? Have any travels away from home influenced work/describe?
C.C.: I grew up in New York, and I suppose that could have had an influence on my writing. The dreariness, the bleak, desolate winters with mountains of snow. An individuals surroundings can definitely influence their work, and I am sure that has shown up in my work at one time or another. I wouldn’t say my travels have influenced much since there’s been very few, but if what I read counts as traveling, then it can give me ideas that I would not have otherwise had. I feel like books are a great way to bounce your perspectives off someone else’s, giving you a broader range of ideas, and so traveling through fiction can have an influence on my work and I.
Q4: What do you consider the most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far?
C.C.: I wrote a book under my pen name “C.C Tundra” titled, “The Cavern of Tenebrous,” which is available on Amazon now. It is a book of poems which describe all the difficult emotions I have gone through in life, and I hope that through that book, someone else will be able to relate to what I’ve written and know they are not alone. I feel like a lot of what I see in the world is about showing a persons best self to the world, such as what is posted on social media. That book was an attempt at raw honesty about how I felt, about the emotions I feel like I can’t express in a conversation, where words are useless to me. https://t.co/58D0CrGnrk?amp=1
Q5: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer?
C.C.: I had a public speaking class in 12th grade where I used poetry to structure my speeches. On one, I used a poem at the end of the speech to wrap my speech up. Everyone in the class loved my work, and called me “a poet.” I never really called myself a poet or thought about it until then, but when they gave this reception, I really started taking the idea of being a poet seriously. I had always been writing, though, as time goes on the art is all about improving the skill that I already have, through reading and writing. I hope that I become better through everything I read and write.
Q6: Favorite activities to relax?
C.C: I like to draw abstract drawings, some times. I also like video games and books and television to pass the time.
Q7: Any recent or forthcoming projects you’d like to promote?
C.C.: The Cavern of Tenebrous is a poetry book I just wrote, based on all the dark emotions I’ve felt in my life. https://amazon.com/Cavern-Tenebrous-C-C-Tundra/dp/B095LH2HT9/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=cavern+of+tenebrous+c.c+tundra&qid=1624768929&s=books&sr=1-3
Q8: What is a favorite line/stanza from a poem of yours or others?
“We eat ourselves with knives.
How is it that you’d call us alive?
My laugh, a hollow. It could have been filled to death, Yet I couldn’t find the filling.”
This is just one example of a line from my poems I like. Whatever really shows what I feel, the full impact of what I have felt at some point, is what I find truly meaningful. I want a document of raw emotion, a document of drudgery, if need be, because I don’t want a single motion to be disguised.
Q9: Who has helped you most with writing?
C.C.: All the writers I read or listen to help me with writing. It is always interesting to see how other people approach the craft of writing, and because of this, I think it makes me a better writer/poet.