Introducing Author Jeffery Martin
Poet, storyteller Jeffery Martin author of nine books (5 books of poetry, 3 children’s books, and a play), uses life experiences as his inspiration behind what he shares with the world. His first book “Weapon of Choice” won the 2008 New Jersey Beach Book Festival for Best Book of Poetry and was also an Honorable Mention in New York and London Book Festivals of the same year. His book of poetry “As Sons Love Their Mothers” received Honorable Mention in the 2011 San Francisco Book Festival. He also received Honorable Mention for his children’s book, “Silly Billy” in the same festival.
He has also lent his pen to five anthologies including “Rushing Waters, Rising Dreams: How The Arts Are Transforming A Community,” “No Hablo Espanol,” “The Border Crossed Us,” “Revolutionary Poets Brigade Los Angeles,” “The Coiled Serpent. He has lent his voice to poetry CD’s and in 2015 released his own poetry CD entitled “Jeffery Road”
Mr. Martin has been very active in the community for some time, founding the theatre group B.E.H.O.L.D. for inner city youth in Rochester, New York, where youth were introduced to poetry, dance, martial arts, fencing, theater, drumming, clowning, acrobatics, art, ceramics and public speaking.
He believes that words can be a source of strength and healing, using his life as an example. He is currently employed by Los Angeles Unified School District and works with children with special needs.
Interview – Book: Jus Sayin’
Creative Talents Unleashed: Hi Jeffery, thank you for agreeing to this interview.
Jeffery: It is an honor
Creative Talents Unleashed: Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
Jeffery: I’ve been writing on some level all my life. It was a way to deal with circumstances I was going through at different points in my life. I always say that writing saved my life. I truly believe that. At my lowest I always wrote things down. As a child being brutalized by a man I thought was my father I fell into writing as a way to say on paper what I could never say vocally. It was my departure from reality.
Creative Talents Unleashed: So when did you fall in love with poetry or writing in general, when did you decide this life was for you? Tell us a bit about that discovery process.
Jeffery: Writing was my escape very young. But when I fell in love with reading it impacted what I wrote. I was reading other people’s stories and realized I had a story, a powerful story that I needed to express. That came through poetry, essays, short stories and journaling. I don’t think it was the love of writing that called me it was wanting to survive as whole as possible, and writing was the way to do that. It was medicine, cleansing medicine. Through that process my writing began to teach people in ways I never imagined.
Creative Talents Unleashed: Why do you write, what is it that you’re trying to communicate through your work?
Jeffery: I write to heal. It’s always been a journey of healing and attempting to better myself from the inside out. The message is that the storyteller should tell his/her story. Never leave it in the hands of someone else to tell your story. The gift requires that we use it to inspire other stories. Empower other storytellers.
Creative Talents Unleashed: Where does your inspiration come from, what might inspire you at any moment to write a story or poem?
Jeffery: Life. I have had a very interesting and challenging life. Difficulties give you a different perspective on things. My teachers have been a myriad of experiences. Total strangers have given me advice that not only changed my life in some way but inspired my pen and what comes through it. Everything has a story. You just have to adjust your vision to see it.
Creative Talents Unleashed: What was the hardest thing about writing your book?
Jeffery: The writing part was easy. I hate editing. Going back and fine tuning everything is torture to me. On this project I got help. God bless ‘em. They know who they are.
Creative Talents Unleashed: What was the easiest thing about writing your book?
Jeffery: The process of writing. I write every day so I didn’t have to be disciplined to get the writing done. It is part of my daily routine anyway. I don’t drink or do drugs. Writing is my healthy addiction…and my soul medicine.
Creative Talents Unleashed: There are many authors who say that in the process of writing a book you learn things about yourself. Did you learn anything in your book writing process about yourself, if so what?
Jeffery: I learned that I’m not afraid of crying any more. I cried a lot with this book because I touched on topics that were very personal in some way. For a long time I put distance between the world and my feelings but I am a part of this world I can’t keep it at arm’s length, it affects me.
Creative Talents Unleashed: What in your view is the role or responsibility of a writer or poet, if there is any?
Jeffery: It is a huge responsibility. The poet is the voice of the masses. Always has been. Some realize this some don’t but it doesn’t negate the fact. Any tyrant that you study down through the ages has done one thing constantly: tried to either influence or destroy the poet. Why? The poet can inspire the people. An inspired people are dangerous to injustice.
Creative Talents Unleashed: What are your ambitions as a writer, where do you hope to see yourself in say 5 years?
Jeffery: Writing full time and going around the world inspiring other storytellers to tell their stories.
Creative Talents Unleashed: Who is your favorite writer or poet? Perhaps you have a favorite quote from them that you would like to share.
Jeffery: James Baldwin. I’ve read thousands of books in my life and the only writer who intimidates me is James Baldwin. His quote: “ I can’t believe what you say, because I see what you do”
Creative Talents Unleashed: What advice would you give to aspiring writers who have dreams of publishing or making writing a career choice?
Jeffery: Write because you have something to say and not because you have something to sell.
About the Book: Jus Sayin
Be prepared to be inspired! ‘Jus Sayin’ is a beautiful compilation, woven from deeply relevant thought and inspiration that the author has shared over time, on social media. Having an indefatigable human spirit, this author challenges us to see life as an everyday miracle, an opportunity for personal growth, inner strength and love for human kind. It is a deeply touching book about love, forgiveness, self-acceptance, respect and gratitude. Written in easy speak; it is a joy for the reader.
A highly motivational book, it will urge us to see the silver lining in all circumstances, viewing our hardships as valuable lessons, forgiving what we think to be unforgivable, being of service to humanity, especially our children. Jeffery Martin has searched his soul, knows himself well; his only yardstick for measurement is his own. The honesty of his spirit is felt throughout this beautiful book. If you enjoy books such as ‘Chicken Soup for the Soul,” Jeffery Martin has taken soul comfort to a new level, with a dash of hot sauce. It is a book you will want to revisit time and again, seeking out beautiful words of wisdom, there is a passage there for every circumstance.
“I’m not working for a better tomorrow, I’m working for a better today. Tomorrow doesn’t need me, today does,” is one excerpt which left me smiling, thankful for having read this refreshingly positive and powerful book.
Brenda-Lee Ranta, author of Myriad of Perceptions & Allegories
Pick up Jeffery’s Book at the following Retailers:
Create Space: www.createspace.com/7167605
Categories: Creative Talents Unleashed