This week we would like you to meet Poet Victor B. Johnson.
What was the inspiration behind becoming a poet?
Writing poetry gives me the opportunity to say out loud what others are afraid to say. I try to use inspirational and uplifting words to reach those who read and hear my work at open mic events. What I like most about the creative process is that when I sit down and put pen to paper, I can let my feelings flow.
Can you take us through your creative process? How long does it take? Does everything you produce make money?
The process is simple. I listen to music or sit on the beach, walk on a pier or bridge and just watch the water flow on the shoreline or rocks. It may take me one or two days to write a poem. There are times when I take a video and watch it a few times to get some ideas about what I want to say. Even though I have published eight poetry books and four poetry chapbooks, not all of my poems sell. I read at open mic events most of the time and many of my poems are not published in a book.
What do you think is the biggest misconception about your line of work?
Some people do not respect poetry because they feel that most poets write too much about their own personal lives. A few also say that rap music and poetry are the same. But I don’t believe this to be true.
When did you first become aware of copyright?
I first became aware of copyright after sending a manuscript to a publishing company and they refused to return it after I decided I didn’t want them to publish my poetry book. Following this situation, I was advised to have everything copyrighted before submitting it for publishing.
What is the best piece of advice you have for fellow creators about copyright and how to protect their work?
I tell all poets to get their work copyrighted. Then, if you see your work published without your authorization, you can take appropriate action.
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