We had the pleasure of interviewing Mark Divine, Author of the poetry book, Nightmare. Here are the excerpts from the interview.
Hi Mark, Great to have you with us today! Please tell us about what it is that you do.
Hello, I’m an artist, photographer, and self-published author. I’m also a gamer. Only with animal crossing and sims, though! 😉
Please tell us more about your journey.
My journey has been a mixture of light and dark. I felt like haven’t really found myself as an artist till now. Everything I’ve created/produced was always funded and crafted by me. This is a great feeling, but it can be very challenging when you feel all alone doing something you love.
Please tell us more about your upcoming poetry book, “Nightmare.”
Just like my past two poetry books, my work always has a double meaning. With Nightmare, it’s basically one big trauma response. The book is split up into 4 acts that spiral and fester into the dark corners of my mind. But it’s all played through the eyes of the “Mark Divine” character. This book in the story is his “awakening,” or his “wake-up call” to all the terrible things he encounters. He begins to lose himself and ends up awakening a monster inside him that makes him go out of control. I wanted this book to be raw and honest, and I wanted to talk about the struggles and the different monsters I’ve encountered throughout my life. This book is dark. It holds so much pain but does have a lighter side towards the end that’s bittersweet. I think a lot of people can relate to it, and I think it can definitely help at least one person out there!
Please tell us more about the “Mark Divine” character.
I created a character that plays as the “speaker” in my poetry because I really enjoyed writing mini-stories that play out through my poems. I wanted to create this weird fantasy alter ego of myself. Mark Divine is someone I thought I wanted to be. Almost like my “higher” self. But quite frankly, I don’t want to be anything like him anymore. He’s the negative, emotional, and bitter side of me. And he’s definitely my evil twin and my biggest enemy. But I can’t escape him because he is inside of me. And he’ll always be there!
What was the most challenging part of writing “Nightmare”?
Other than publishing errors that kept pushing back my release, I definitely think the hardest part was writing about things that I thought I would never talk about. I wrote a lot about my experiences with PTSD, Anxiety, Paranoia, and struggles with body image, and sexual trauma. This is all stuff that I feel like a lot of people shy away from sometimes. So I decided to create something beautiful out of it. I couldn’t heal my trauma, but I can face it head-on with a different perspective. And Nightmare helped me with that.
Which is your favorite poem in the book?
I really like the last act titled “Good Mourning.” It’s the light at the end of the tunnel. And all the poems are very positive and liberating. One of my favorites is called “Raindrops.” I poke fun at a lot of people from my past in that one. It’s very sassy and bitter. But it’s all in good fun! No hard feelings!
What kind of things in your life inspire you?
Almost everything! But mainly, people inspire me. Whether it’s good or bad, in this book, I was heavily inspired by goosebumps or anything that had a 90s horror grunge aesthetic. I’m really inspired by a lot of musicians. And while writing Nightmare, I listened to a lot of The Cure, Ethel Cain, Brand New, and Lana Del Rey.
Where can people find you?
I’m mainly on Instagram! It’s @maarkdivine. I mainly use that platform to promote all my work.
Thank you so much for talking to me about my poetry book, Nightmare! I can’t wait to share it with the world.
Thank you so much, Mark, for giving us your precious time! We wish you all the best for your journey ahead!
Thomas Mazurkewicz @t.homas.1
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