Q1: When did you start writing and your first influences?
James: My first memory of writing poetry was during a school trip. We stayed in a place called Borfa House and one afternoon we were tasked with writing poetry. My poem the sea cat at night was later published in a magazine or newspaper and I still have the original poem.
Q2: Who is/are your biggest influences today?
James: There are so many to name in truth. Since speaking to a poet from Swansea, Matthew M C Smith, I have met and spoken to loads of poets and writers. Reading their work, conversing with them and the support has led me to write in ways I did not think were possible.
Q3: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing?
James: I grew up and still reside in Swansea. The city is very proud of its history and culture and Dylan Thomas’s influence is embedded into the town. The geography of the town also plays a part in my writing.
Q4: Have any travels from home influenced your work/describe?
James: In my profession and hobbies, I am lucky to do quite a bit of traveling and see lots of new places and people and they certainly find their way into my work.
Q5: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be an artist/poet?
James: Since that moment on the school trip, I have always written. I never showed anyone my work and I thought it was just a hobby and would be nothing more. I tried to ignore but truthfully there were stories and poems inside of me that needed to be told to the world. I spoke to Matthew M C Smith and submitted my first poem.
Q6: Favorite activities when not writing?
James: Boxing, training in the gym, spending time with my family.
Q7: Any recent or upcoming promotional work you’d like to acknowledge?
James: I have just had a micro collection “the Thousand Ghosts of You” published with Alien Buddha Press.
Q8: Who has helped you most with your writing?
James: As with my influences, there are many. I would like to thank Amy-Jean Muller, Stephen Golds, B F Jones, Max, Scott, Tisa, Wayne, Alec, and a few more. They know who they are.
Q9: For more work from James Lilley:
check out Punk Noir Magazine
Bio: James Lilley, 34, father of 3 studying part time in a degree in Creative Writing. 2020 saw first work submitted and published with poetry being accepted with Black Bough Poetry, Versification and Spillwords. Is an active MMA and Bareknuckle fighter and a retired professional boxer dubbed the ‘Punching Poet’