24 March 2021
Posted by Megan Laing
On the 2nd of March 2021, I was lucky enough to chat with young poet April Egan to discuss her writing, next steps and menteeship with Caleb Parkin.
What would you consider your short-term goals, entering the mentoring programme, to be? And by short term, I mean this year.
“I’m not actually sure. I haven’t really thought about short term goals. It would be just to start editing some poems I’ve written I suppose.”
What would you consider to be the personal benefits of the mentoring relationship and how does this adapt any of your goals?
“Definitely connecting with an older, more established poet. It brings me into a section of the poetry world that I’ve never seen before, because I’ve mostly stayed within the Young Poets Network and I’ve only ever really spoken to poets my own age. I feel like that’s really helpful and it creates a sense of connection that I haven’t had before.
I’ve had no prior experience with mentoring, and my experience so far has been extremely positive and exciting.”
How do you think the guidance of a more experienced poet will impact your own writing process?
“I think I have a lot to learn about poetry. I’ve never had any other sort of mentoring experience before. It’s just been me. I think it’s something that I really need in order to improve both my writing and myself.
I really enjoyed our first meeting. We had a lot more in common than I thought originally. We said a lot of the same things, and they were quite specific things, so I really liked it.”
What effect, if any, has the first meeting with your mentor had on your goals / writing process so far?
“It’s made me really, really enthusiastic about poetry. I’ve joined some group chats and been talking to a lot more people. I went to Caleb’s book launch and there were a lot of people there, I hadn’t had an experience like that before and I really enjoyed it. I was by far the youngest person there, but that was okay! Someone there introduced a poem with ‘I was born in 1949’ and I was born in 2003. I feel like I’m very open now to talking about poetry, more than I ever have been before.”
Looking forward, what are you most excited about in terms of your work?
“I’m excited about the finished product. I’ll be proud to see it in print.”
“So far it’s been a rewarding experience both creatively and personally, and allowed me to talk about my work and myself and how they connect with each other. It also gives me the opportunity to make a solid foundation for my work, to see the poetry taking shape. I am very very excited for what is ahead.”
April is a multi-award-winning young poet and member of the Young Poets Network who grew up in Australia and the Isle of Wight. Read more of April’s work here.