Today’s interviewee: Cheryle Baker
Hello, I am Cheryle Baker. I use C.Lightwalker for my virtual escapades thus the name of my Blog “Lightwalkers Blog”. I may not qualify for this tour. I am not a published writer, in fact I recently enrolled in WordPress Blogging U 101, as a way to discipline myself to write on a regular basis, be accountable to doing the writing and to have some sort of structure. I write sporadically, mostly for myself. My main focus has been on poetry. I attended courses Intermediate, Advanced and Form Poetry taught by Micheline Maylor at Alexandra’s Writers Society Centre in Calgary a number of years ago.
What is the first piece you remember writing (from childhood or young adulthood)?
When my great grandfather passed way, I received the phone call. I was about 15 at the time. My mother and father were out, probably at a Friday night dinner. My two sisters and I were home alone. I answered the phone and someone, I don’t remember who, an aunt or uncle, told me that my grandfather had passed. This was my first experience with death. Once when I was too young to understand, I found a dead puppy in the field and I had visited one of the Death Camps in Germany. While I waited for my parents to come home I wrote a poem. This is the first piece of writing I remember writing with a purpose, other than a school assignment. I asked my mother to place the poem in the coffin with him, under his pillow. I believe my intention was to make sure he had a physical representation of my love with him where ever he went. At the time I had faith in some sort of heaven.
What is your favorite aspect of being a writer? Your least favorite?
I enjoy the clarity that comes with writing. The sense of accomplishment and completion. I enjoy the feel and sound of the words. Knowing what I have written down paints the picture I am expressing.
My least favourite aspect is struggling to capture the absolutely right word as it slips quickly by my inner eye. Sometimes I can see it but not quite catch it. Then I have to sit, try to recreate the thought process that led to the appearance of that particular word. Not being successful with that approach, I then search the dictionary, thesaurus, rhyming dictionary or whatever resource would be helpful in providing me with the word that perfectly fits my image of the sentence or picture I am painting on the page.
Do you believe in writer’s block? If so, what is your best tip for beating it? If not, why not?
Yes, leaving the piece for a while. Placing my focus on something else, even meditation. Sometimes it is a matter of something not being right in the piece I have been working on. When I figure out what that is, things begin to flow much easier. Other times I’m not clear as to where I am going. Again, once I figure it out I can recommence the process. Other times, I just have to struggle and writhe while I figure it out. There is no one way, for me.
What is your current writing project? What is the most challenging aspect of your current writing project?
I am currently working my way through Blogging U 201. I completed Blogging U 101 and thoroughly enjoyed the challenge. My poetry is always waiting around the door or inside the hamper. When it appears I take note and add to the collection. I have created a feature – The Meditation Cushion – which is my way of improving myself as a meditation instructor. The most difficult challenge is avoiding the procrastination and actually doing it. Fear sometimes stands in the way of me and the page.
What supports you in your writing?
The satisfaction of knowing I have said what I needed to. I get this sense that there is no more to put down on the page. I let it sit. When I come back, I rearrange the paragraphs, edit a few things, it feels done. Whew! It’s out and I’m happy with it.
What are you currently reading?
Biography – Acaryia Mun Bhuridatta Thera by Acariya Maha Boowa Nanasampanno
Philosophy for Dummies – by Tom Morris, Ph.D
Tibetan Book of the Dead – A translation with commentary by Francesca Fremantle and Chogyam Trungpa.
Several books, including tapes on learning to speak Thai.
Where can our readers find you and your books online?