Tell everybody a little about yourself
My name is Alan Durant and I am an award-winning author of stories for children of all ages and poetry for adults and children.
Was your creativity affected in anyway during the lockdown? Did being lockdown make you feel inspired or deflated?
I found walking in Nature during lockdown a source of comfort and inspiration. I think perhaps I took more notice of the natural world around me. I have managed to get a lot of writing done in spite of the many challenges.
Was it therapeutic doing creative work during lockdown?
Yes, absolutely. But then it always is.
What was the main thinking behind your poem submitted to Together Behind Four Walls ?
Much as I enjoyed my walks, I did find it a challenge avoiding the many other walkers - often out in groups. I guess it triggered a subliminal grumpiness.
What inspires most of your poems?
My poems are generally inspired by my own experiences and conversations - or memories.
Do you remember the first poem you ever wrote or one of the first?
One of the poems that means most to me was written as a teenager, Have You Ever Contemplated? I recall my dad saying he thought it was quite good, which coming from him was high praise. I included it in my last collection of poetry for young people, What I Did on My Holiday (published by Caboodle Books).
Do you hand write poems or go directly on to your computer?
I usually write stories straight onto the computer (my handwriting is appalling) but I always write the first drafts of poems by hand.
Do you ever give up on poems you have started?
Certainly. But not very often.
Do you only focus on poetry or do you also write prose?
I’ve written novels, short stories - and picture books, the crafting of which employ many of the same devices and techniques as poetry. Both are written to be read aloud.
Do your poems ever have strong messages?
I guess any poem of any worth conveys a message of some kind - even if it only that poetry is powerful and inspiring. I pass on thoughts and observations rather than overt messages. My poems are more reflections than attempts to change the world.
How would you describe the tone of your poems?
Emotionally ironic perhaps.
If you had to write a poem about yourself, how would it start?
When you left
I remembered what it was I’d wanted to say
(The opening words of a new poem)
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