Thursday, February 15, 2007

Writer's Corner

G. Emil Reutter
Pennsylvania author, G. Emil Reutter, had a very productive 2006, and it hasn't gone unnoticed. During the last year he published four books, "Stirring Within/Tales from Mount Carmel" (1/06), "The Jonesville Collection" (4/06), "Asphalt Road" (12/06), and "Plain Speak/Sweet Speak" (with Phil Primeau). The concept behind "Plain Speak/Sweet Speak" is what initially sparked my interest, and in the forward of the book, Phil Primeau explains it like this: "This chapbook demonstrates not only the versatility of language, but also the necessity of subtextual examination. It allows reflection on cultural and linguistic patterns and forces the reader to consider the flexibility of the written unit." If you look at it in terms of music, the first half of the book is the original material written by Reutter, and the second half the remix by Primeau. Reutter has also had several other poems and stories published through various website including "Neighborhood" (Word Riot), "Shopping" (Wilderness House Review), "The Tale of Virgil Oakes" (Dead Mule), and many more that you can find in the portfolio section of his website.

Recently, I asked Mr. Reutter a few questions about poetry vs. fiction, the internet, and more. Here are his responses:

Orange Alert (OA): Who are your biggest literary influences?
G. Emil Reutter (GER): I am a bit eclectic when it comes to literature. I enjoy the works of Hemingway and Thomas to Justin Barrett, Debbie Kirk and slightly cringing even Joe Massey. I find the more one is exposed to the more one grows. A poet from Western New York, Vincent Quatroche has released several discs that are simply amazing and have impacted me. The whole concept of Plain Speak/Sweet Speak with Phil Primeau exposed me to a different form of my own work as viewed by Primeau. All in all I would have to say Dylan Thomas was a major influence.

OA: How has the internet (websites, webzines, blogs, etc) affected you as a writer?
GER: The internet has afforded many an opportunity to view published works by authors/poets who would not normally have this type of exposure in the traditional publishing world which is now dominated by big business. Of course the small and electronic press has its own problems with cliques, but this can be overcome by persistence and talent. The internet has also provided poets/authors with access to other writers often in real time that one could not accomplish before the internet. I would never have found many of the publishers who have entertained my work had it not been for the internet.

OA: How would you define creativity?
GER: The ability to see things others don’t see resulting in a talent to enable others to see it.

OA: I've noticed you write both poetry and flash fiction ("Neighborhood" from Word Riot), how would you explain the difference between the two? (There seems to be a gray area with some writers.)
GER: I am not a constructionist when it comes to poetry. I often think on a poem long before it hits paper, often many poems and as they come out they flow from inside of me. Poetry comes from deep within as opposed to fiction which you construct on a story line. Neighbors was very cool because that is all that came of the story and right away I thought of Jackie from Word Riot and submitted to them. My editor, (SR Moser) reads over all my new stuff and the poetry needs little to no editing while my fiction work is fortunate enough to have SR to clean it up a bit. There is a separation between poetry and fiction, flash or otherwise. I don’t consider it a gray area.

OA: Are there any current projects or publications that you are shopping around that you would like to mention?
GER: I have a selected poetry collection entitled “Blue Collar Poet” currently in submission status and two other collections, one of short fiction and poems entitled “Broken Shells and Hope” and the other short fiction entitled “You Don’t Look Good Dead” in addition to a new chapbook "Shadows In The Daylight". I am hopeful they will find a publisher.

For more information on G. Emil Reutter visit his website or his blog.