I’ve Got Questions for Lou Ella Hickman

Editor’s Note: This exchange is part of a series of brief interviews with emerging writers of recent or forthcoming books. If you enjoyed it, please visit other interviews in the I’ve Got Questions feature.

she: robed and wordless by Lou Ella Hickman
  • What’s the title of your book? Fiction? Nonfiction? Poetry? Who is the publisher and what’s the publication date?

The title is she: robed and wordless published by Press 53 in 2015. It is a book of poetry.

  • In a couple of sentences, what’s the book about?

The poems give voice to many women of the Bible in the form of dramatic monologues.

  • What’s the book’s genre (for fiction and nonfiction) or primary style (for poetry)?

It is a book of poetry and the form is dramatic monologue

  • What’s the nicest thing anyone has said about the book so far?

“I can really identify with some of these women.”

  • What book or books is yours comparable to or a cross between? [Is your book like Moby Dick or maybe it’s more like Frankenstein meets Peter Pan?]

Tom Lombardo, my poetry editor, mentioned it was similar to The World’s Wife by Carol Ann Duffy.  I also found three other books that were also similar to mine:  Anarcha Speaks by Dominique Christina, Mend by Kwaya Fagin Maples, Patient.:poems by Bettina Judd.

  • Why this book? Why now? 

Good question.  I wish I knew the answer.

  • Other than writing this book, what’s the best job you’ve ever had?

I was in religious retail for several years.

  • What do you want readers to take away from the book?

What they need when they read the poems.  For example, someone has walked in my shoes and survived.  Or perhaps, “Wow, this expresses how I feel.”

  • What food and/or music do you associate with the book?

One piece of music I associate with the book is Jessye Norman’s performance of “Mon     Coeurs’ouvre à ta Voix” (“Softly Awakes my Heart”) from the opera Samson and Delilah byCamille Saint-saëns.

  • What book(s) are you reading currently?

Elizabeth Bishop: The Complete Poems—1927-1979 and The Meaning of Mary Magdalene by Cynthia Bourgeault. 

Lou Ella Hickman

Learn more about Lou Ella and purchase the book from Press 53.

The book is also available from Bookshop.

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