with Lannie Stabile:
Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?
Lannie: I started writing when I was a wee lass of eleven or twelve. Back then, Shel Silverstein, Gary Soto, V.C. Andrews, and R. L. Stine really rocked my world.
Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?
Lannie: I’m influenced by writers I consider friends. People like Todd Dillard, Taylor Byas, Madeleine Corley, Danielle Rose, Jason B. Crawford, Rota, and Sam Herschel Wein. We often trade drafts among one another, and getting a first, raw glance at talent like theirs is always inspiring.
Q3: Any pivotal moments when you knew you wanted to be a writer?
Lannie: In sixth grade, a student teacher had the class try their hand at poetry. I wrote a poem about a lion called “Long Live the King,” and it was well-received by the teacher and my peers. I definitely caught the bug then. But I started getting serious about writing just a few years ago, after a serious bout of depression. I thought, “You know what? It’s now or never.”
Q4: Who has helped you most with writing?
Lannie: If I named everyone individually, it would take way too long. Suffice to say I have a robust support group on Twitter. Special shout out, however, to Jason and Rota who got me back in the saddle after a handful of years away from poetry.
Q5: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing & did any travels away from home influence your work?
Lannie: I grew up in Metro Detroit, but I don’t think where I grew up influenced my writing much. More so how I grew up. And that was poor, neglected, and surrounded by people I didn’t trust.
Q6: What do you consider the most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far?
Lannie: Good Morning to Everyone Except Men Who Name Their Dogs Zeus is definitely my most meaningful work so far. I like to say the poems challenge Greek mythology, sexual assault, and men obsessed with other powerful men. I wrote it for myself, to work out some of my own trauma, but I published it for other survivors and the men who think this book isn’t about them. I really hope it changes someone’s life. Even just a little bit.
Q7: Favorite activities to relax?
Lannie: I…uh…I’m not great at relaxing, to be honest. I mean, I read while walking on the treadmill.
Q8: What is a favorite line/stanza from a poem of yours or others?
Lannie: My wife, Kaitlyn, and I started rewatching CSI during the pandemic, and Grissom once quoted Thoreau: “I would rather sit on a pumpkin and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion.” That line really stuck with me.
Q9: Any recent or forthcoming projects that you’d like to promote?
Absolutely. Next year, ELJ Editions is publishing my first flash fiction chapbook, Something Dead in Everything. My 2021 goal was to focus more on prose, so KACHOW! I also have a couple other poetry chapbooks looking for homes. Maybe I’ll have more to announce later in the year 😉