Recently, Chicón Street Poets kicked off a new element in our monthly open mics: the Reader Spotlight! This bonus five-minute spot at the halfway point in our show gives us a chance to show a little extra love to a member of our literary community, nominated by our readers and open mic attendees. Our own Kati Taylor was our inaugural Reader Spotlight author, and we were thrilled for a chance to learn a little more about her background and chat about her literary inspirations.
Kati’s early experience with publishing included writing a lot for her college newspapers and creating a whole mess of zines in the 90s. For Kati, being at Kinko’s at 2am, powered by 7-11 coffee, Clove cigarettes and all the free office supplies she could handle was a little slice of heaven.
She left home at 15, joined the military at 19 and managed to travel extensively (but never while in the Navy). As a child she dreamed of being a foreign correspondent, and she’s not dead yet, so there’s still time! Her daughter recently told her, “I want to have adventures like you did, but more,” so she feels like she may be an okay mama.
Kati doesn’t adhere to a specific genre because her words just ask to be born. Recently she’s started thinking more seriously about seeking publication, and in the meantime you can find her words at katiwords.wordpress.com.
After her Reader Spotlight, Kati sat down with Chicón Street Poets and discussed her writing and where she finds inspiration.
CSP: Much of your writing seems focused on the passage of time, and changes in lives or landscapes through the years. Could you share a little about what draws you to that subject matter?
KT: I’m an archivist at heart. In writing, that becomes a keeper of the memories, if you will. In that, it follows that my writing picks through the layers of time and history to reveal connections, correlations and motivation behind action.
CSP: What other inspirations or themes are finding their way into your work lately?
KT: I’ve been thinking a lot about the cultural relationship with food, and food as a central character in our existence. How do we interact with the essential? What do those interactions bring out in other, non-essential, relationships? Ultimately, relationships.
CSP: Lastly, if you could recommend one author you’ve been enjoying recently, who would it be, and why?
KT: I somehow missed reading To Kill a Mockingbird. I’m reading it now and Harper’s language is so full, velvety yet raw. The trial and moral questions around it are imperative to the story, but the depth of it is Scout: a little girl growing up surrounded by contradictions. It’s a beautiful and moving story on so many levels.
Do you know a writer who you’d like to see in our Reader Spotlight? Reach out via our social channels or email us at chiconstreetpoets [at] gmail.com!