• Spectrum Staff

Contributor Interview: Kate E. Schultz

Kate E. Schultz's poem "Dude With the Beard" is featured in the most recent issue of Spectrum.

Order a copy here to read it and the fabulous work of all our contributors.

Q: What inspires you to write?


One, people, two, strong feelings, three, little gestures or exchanges that might seem insignificant, but that spark questions. Also, things that I can't get off my mind even after they've occurred will sometimes serve as my impetus to write and to work through those thoughts and feelings. I also like to try and lead others towards additional perspectives on something that they might not normally give a second thought.


Q: How many drafts do you have or how many times do you edit a poem before submitting it to a magazine ?


It depends on the poem. I wrote the title poem for my Master's thesis, "Unfolding"—which is also the first poem that was accepted by a literary journal (Bayou Magazine)—the night before my final draft was due, because I was short on the required page number of original creative work that I needed to include in my thesis. It was never revised other than a couple of changes in line breaks. Meanwhile, other poems of mine have gone through five, six, seven revisions and sometimes I'm still not satisfied with them.


Q: What advice can you give other writers about publishing and submitting work?


Not to take the publishing world too personally. I learned through my Assistant Editorship for New Ohio Review that so much of readers' and editors' decisions are based on personal and stylistic preferences. Following from this, it's therefore essential to simply inundate the market. Submit to hundreds of journals. "Carpet-bomb," if you will. Oh, and use Duotrope, an online database for managing your process. It's a lifesaver, and I know I would not have published as much as I've been able to if Duotrope hadn't existed.

Q: What do you hope your readers remember about your work?

In terms of my own work, I hope that readers find it to be relatable, and to give voice to feelings that they have experienced in life. I also hope that it causes them to appreciate or see something in a new way.