Interview with James D. Casey IV

Q: When did you start writing?
A: I started writing at a young age. The first thing I can remember writing is a Halloween short story for a class contest in elementary school that I won first place for. Then I started to write poetry in my teens, but I didn’t get serious about it until 2009 when I broke C2 in my neck and T3 & T4 in my back at work. I got addicted to pain killers so I decided to enter a rehab facility, and while I was there I used poetry to cope with the things I was going through. There was a group of people I met there that were also into writing, so we started a poetry club and would do readings on the weekends. It was an extremely therapeutic experience. From there I realized that writing was my life’s passion and I wanted to pursue it, so I  started submitting to lit mags and putting together my first book. 

Q: Who are your biggest inspirations/your favorite writers?

A: Well, there are several people that have inspired me. Both in the literary world, and people close to me that have supported my efforts and pushed me on when I felt like throwing in the towel. My father and the women I love, my Muse, are two of my biggest fans. I actually dedicated my first two books to them. As far as writers go, some of my favorites are Charles Bukowski, William S. Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg, Hunter S. Thompson, Jim Morrison, Leonard Cohen, Arthur Rimbaud, and Tom Waits. I also thoroughly enjoy the writing of some of our fellow contemporary poets from the Facebook community. 

Q: What time of day do you do most of your writing?

A: It varies depending on my mood. Sometimes I’ll wake up early, make a pot of coffee, and have a mellow day typing out a few words while smoking a few cigarettes in between. Other days I’ll wake up well after noon, crack a bottle of liquor, and violently slap at the keys while chain smoking. I must admit that some of my best work comes from the second method. I believe it was Hemingway that said “Write drunk; edit sober.” Mostly I like to just let the words flow when they want to flow and don’t force the issue. It’s quality not quantity that counts.


Q: Why do you write?

A: Poetry is my passion. It helps me cope…it’s like a release. Poetry is the purest form of human language distilled down to speak volumes in only a few words. I truly enjoy when people tell me that they like my work, but in reality I don’t do it for them. I do it for me, and that will never change. A lot of people say “poetry is dead,” but it will forever live in my heart, and as long as I’m alive and able to write it will live on.

Q: Do you have any favorite quotes from writers?

A: Of course, don’t we all? Some of my favorites…
“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”
~ Maya Angelou
“There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” 
~ Ernest Hemingway
“if it doesn’t come bursting out of you
in spite of everything,
don’t do it.”
~ Charles Bukowski
“If my poetry aims to achieve anything, it’s to deliver people from the limited ways in which they see and feel.”
~ Jim Morrison

Q: What is one piece of advice you would give new/aspiring writers?

A: My words of encouragement would be to just keep going because perseverance is key. Dreams can be willed into fruition through perseverance, and one dream can change the world. Even when you feel like giving up because it seems like no one cares about your work–don’t. Writers write, it’s what we do, but do it for yourself and not others. That’s when it’s the most fulfilling.

Q: Do you have any collections, chapbooks, or other books available for people to

A: I have three books available for purchase on my Amazon Author Page:

Q: Do you have any upcoming books or projects you’d like to talk about?

A: I’ve been working on a fourth book, but I don’t have anything solid just yet. So keep your eyes and ears peeled because I am planning on putting something new together soon! 

James D. Casey IV has authored three books of poetry. His work has also been published by several lit mags and small press venues including Triadæ Magazine, Pink Litter, In Between Hangovers, Indiana Voice Journal, Beatnik Cowboy, Dissident Voice, Scarlet Leaf Review, Horror Sleaze Trash, Zombie Logic Review, Tuck Magazine, Outlaw Poetry, and many more.

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