Anthony Doyle sits down with HBM to talk about his collection of sensual poetry, Reluctant Seductions: The Red Light Stories.
An interesting compound to his previous publication, English Toffee and Broken Hearts, Doyle covers the dynamics of relationships through saucy verse and imagery. Giving us an exclusive sneak peak into his latest publication, Doyle shares his poetry, his muses, and what it’s like to be a writer in his world.
1.) What prompted you to make a collection of sensual poems?
It’s like a vendetta against my first book. After I wrote my first poetry collection, English Toffee and Broken Hearts, I felt out of place in Los Angeles.
Also, there’s so many different influences. I did a lot of open mics. But I felt out of place doing that, going through other people’s experiences and bodies. You’d think it’d be easy to write sensual stuff. Coming up with the stuff for the second book was difficult.
2.) What do you want your readers to feel or understand with your writing?
It’s comfortable to seek the surface of the book, but towards the end I want you to walk away with something substantive. I want my readers to get something out of my writing.
4.) From what point of view did you write these poems?
90% male, but I didn’t keep it one-male sided. The rest is from a female’s point of view. It’s definitely stage, open-mic driven .
5.) Any poems you’d like to share with us, for the readers who may not be able to purchase your books, or to compel your readers to buy?
“Intent and Consummation” (It makes a statement about how this relationship is going to go). It appears early to set the tone in book:
“Intent and Consummation”
of what could
before the act
before the after
in your hidden book
of would be suitors
just making that roster
I walk away
with ego stroked
with Gossip for your girls club
fodder for rumor
in lieu of the act
before the after
there are those times
at the brink
for rumors unsubstantiated ,
when just knowing
is one of those times
And there’s “Waterfalls”; it starts seductive, but by the end you know what I’m talking about. Watch the following Youtube video of Doyle performing the poem with a model.
6.) How do you maintain your wellness throughout the strenuous creative process?
I lived for the book. Some would say I have a durability to withstand a mundane existence for a long term reward. Then the pandemic hit. The book was about exercising demons. The creative process is haunting, a necessary evil. So, the creative process was a way of maintaining my wellness.
7.) Why did you decide to self-publish?
My first book was published on cheap paper. Therefore an editor advised me that I should’ve chosen a higher grade paper instead of the printer’s complimentary house paper, which made no statement on the writing’s quality. Seductions in a way became my middle finger to the establishment for any off base criticism of English Toffee [my first book].
8.) From a writer’s perspective, what makes a muse beautiful and inspiring? Did you have a muse for this poetry collection?
The cover of my first book looks like her.
Something happens that you can’t explain. It’s like lightning. A part of me understands it, a part of me doesn’t, and i don’t want to lose that mystery.
9.) What was it like to write from a woman’s point of view?
I looked at a woman’s part in a relationship, how she’s frustrated in the relationship and how a man approaches her. I asked myself, “what’s my right to impede on her?”. In other words, I gotta look at it from both sides. (Chuckles) I even thought of the Cosmo Magazine matchmaker scheme and how women read about zodiac signs and matchmaker stuff.
10.) As a writer who wrote about women and relationships, what makes a woman beautiful to you?
I can’t put a finger on it. They’re different. The human aesthetic is an impossible quality to define. You know, one statuesque muse flew off the cover of Vogue while another was quite petite. I even tried avoiding my second muse. I’d see this person, take a left, but then see that person right in my face. I can’t identify it. Adding to the mystery I tend to be drawn to well traveled, multilingual, Sagittarians. A selection in the new book entitled “The Cosmo Matchmaker Star Sign Compatibility Quiz” is a playful take on those underlying dynamics.
Any final notes you’d like to add?
To family: If anything I hope this book can be appreciated as a milestone in a journey from my Texas roots to here and now. And, beyond that, it all was meant as love.
Don’t miss out on Anthony Doyle and his collection of poetry!