She was unstoppable ,
Not because she didn’t have failures or doubts,
but she continued on despite them.
Women’s are multitalented. And above that, they excel in everything they set their foot to. Today, I’ve on board such a person who is a wonder woman.
Miriam Otto , co-founder of “Voice of Poets” and also a curator and editor of the Muser’s square. She is an author , a dancer, designer, musician and a street photographer. Indeed, she is a multitalented soul.
The affair with poems started at a tender age of 7. The love blossomed with her own blog. She has written various books and also featured in some. Her book “The Night Under the Shooting Stars” is a magic. And if you haven’t read it, you are missing a blessing.
Miriam loves to connect with people around the world. She loves croissant filled with chocolate and enjoying Latte Macchiato in cafes. Her love for travelling isn’t hidden from her fans and friends
The journey of any successful person isn’t easy. Behind a successful person is the motivations and their will of never giving up. The conversation with her was amazing.
So, here’s what I was having for her in mymystery question box.
1) Miriam, you are an amazing poetess, artist, editor, curator and cofounder of voice of poets. What’s the story behind such multi talented soul?
Thanks sooo much for the love and the compliment! And for having me with you! Yes, sometimes it is not easy to be a multi passionate person. Even when I love to be one. I always love many things. In my main job I am a designer. But luckily I found out how to live my passion for words as well. Often in our world people want to tell you, that you can focus only on one thing. I am also very much needed as a Designer in my job, as they are rare.
So it is good to differentiate this.
But sometimes people want to tell you what you are good at and what you are not. Since I don’t believe this anymore I try to live as many passions as possible. Often I get overwhelmed because I want to do so many things at the very same time.
Four years ago I started my own blog DreamTravelConnect.com and found my passion for poetry again.
I started it as a travel blog which was spilled with poems right at the beginning. Then I detected Instagram for me. First for pictures and travel stories. But then it turned out that people fell in love with my thoughts and emotions. So I wrote more and more of them! I am so in love with the Insta and poetry community. And I am so thankful for their love and support and believing in me! Then almost two years ago I found The Muser Square, another poetry community – and they found me. Back then it had a different name. So Devanshi the founder asked me one day if I want to join. Around 16 poets who have been core members at this time made it to the beautiful place which it is now.
I’m curating there a wonderful writers group with amazing talented poetesses and poets on WhatsApp with more than 160 writers.
As we are collaborating a lot with the publisher Artson Publishing House a publisher for poetry books in India, Theindieshe, Benson (@benzapah) and me came up with the idea to create our own poetry book with other talents from around the world. It will be published very soon under the name “Voices”. So grab yourself a copy.
This summer we created with the very same name a community for “Voices of Poets”. As we three believe that every voice matters. Yeah! This is the story behind my passion of words and me as the co-founder of voices of poets.
2) What was your book “A Night Under the Shooting Star” about?
“A Night Under the Shooting Star” is filled with magic and emotions. I created it together with three amazing and talented poets. One of them is Chirag (@ckumar.03) a poet friend of mine.
It is your entry ticket into a new world, where the shooting star gets real and stories are woven into poems.I also created it together with Soniya by Artson as a publisher. So it is still an anthology but it already feels like my own poetry book as I have 20 poems in it.
3) Who you consider your motivation and why is it so?
I think, the most motivation comes from within. This is why I write. I often feel the urge, that I “have to” write. It is an inner beautiful force like a flame driving me. Also bringing my thoughts and inner pictures on paper feels often like rearranging my words in my head. Giving them a voice. Or a home. It rejuvenates me, letting me feel light, coming my purpose a little bit closer.
And of course I have a lot of buddying writers who really and truly inspire and motivate me continuously. There is Theindieshe and Benson with whom I co-founded a community and with whom I am creating a wonderful book. They are both amazing creative inspirations. At the moment I am creating my solo book.
Benson and Esra from @eg.poetry are my beautiful Muses and creative sparks who keep me on track. Because they follow the same solo path like me! And they are two amazing creative souls! Who have both a thing with words! If you want to write your own book, I really encourage you to look for buddies on your way! It also can be non writers! One of my many supporters have been my mum!
other inspirations 🙂
I am also inspired a lot through poetry challenges. Like the ones by Mei @Lipstickandmiracles or the ones by the community @doortoursouls who read the poems on their Insta live as a reward for the writer, what is a beautiful thing or by the piano prompts by Jean’s @etch.me.in – they make me more creative.
Writing for prompts make me write about things I wouldn’t write normally about … or often about the things my heart and soul unconsciously want me to write about but I wouldn’t bring on paper normally.Also I am very thankful for the wonderful spark Susan from BymePoetry creates. She always comes up with a new wonderful idea. She is always stretching my comfort zone in a beautiful way. Lately we did a dance battle under poets. I was the one who accepted for our community. Lol. Yeah! It was fun!
She supports new talented and fresh voices and new growing communities like us. And then another main motivation and driving force is of course the whole and beautiful Insta community who is really amazing and caring. And my favourite WhatsApp writers group on The Muser Square. I really appreciate their support and love. I wouldn’t want to miss them!
4)Your latest book “Wild Sparks” includes 24 talented poets.How was the experience working with such amazing people?
Yes! I really loved and enjoyed the work with all the amazing poets. It is always wonderful to be connected to all of them. I already knew a lot of writers from previous books I created together with Artson and The Muser Square. Artson is the publisher who collaborates regularly with us. And with whom I am writing now my solo book.
We created and compiled the book in a team of five amazing editors from The Muser Square Poetry Community. It was wonderful and thrilling to come up with an anthology of your favourite topic and theme in a team and then asking fellow poets to participate. Reading all the poems they have sent in and refining them. Yes! It is always exciting! Also: Collaborating with Soniya from Artson is always a beautiful thing to do. Meanwhile we became friends.
5) I really like the cover of your book “Wild Sparks”. What was the idea behind publishing an anthology?
Lol. Yees! I convinced all my four fellow poets of our book team to take this picture. So I am happy you love it as well. Soniya has always a wonderful taste in choosing pictures. She gave us different styles and pictures we could choose from.The idea behind the anthologies is Devanshi from The Muser Square. She always comes up with new ideas. It feels like you can shake her and million ideas drop out of her head.
Lol. Aishvarya (@tranquilledpendulum), Silpa (@aplis7) and Dhwanil (@thescarlettblaze_03) and me volunteered for this project. Our aim was to give new talents a voice and a platform through books! Besides this, I just love reading and editing poems! Also I enjoyed it to get a first experience in publishing. And to give others this experience as well. I learned so much from all of them and this wonderful journey. It is the most beautiful thing to hold your own book in your hands. I can encourage everybody to do this!
6) Miriam,what’s your take on writers block?
I made writing a daily habit. So that I don‘t get blocked. For me it is not the issue that I don’t know what to write about as I take notes about inspirations regularly. I also often use my phone for spontaneous inspirations via voice messages. Furthermore, I try to challenge myself through writing on prompts for other artists. Taking up this poetry challenges make me write about things I wouldn‘t normally write about. Also, it is a beautiful way to get feedback from other poets.
For me it is more the case that I get overwhelmed easily. That I have too many ideas or todos in my head. So creating a daily writing habit is very important for me. This means, that I don‘t write one poem per day, but I am writing my thoughts down. Sometimes only some lines or a todo list. Or an inspiration list. This keeps me sane. And all my chaotic thoughts, which are many … are more in order.Or I bring them down on paper that I have space for new thoughts.
7) When you got featured in ‘Poetica’, what was the reaction of your mother?
My mother laughed about the dance video I created for Poetica as a thank you note!I literally was sooo much filled with joy, that I danced through my living room. And filmed this!She is an amazing support always and reads every single poem of mine on Insta.
8) Miriam, any compliment that still makes you smile?
Yeees! I always smile about compliments.And they usually put a big huge smile into my heart! Or they make my day!There can‘t be enough compliments in this world. This is one thing of the beautiful Insta Community. They are all filled with love and show this wholeheartedly regularly. I really appreciate their love!
9) What do you think are the struggles or mistakes of a budding writer. How should they overcome it?
Mistakes. For me mistakes are part of creativity. I often come up with new stuff through this I experiment. And enjoy it!As I curate a writers group on WhatsApp with over 160 people, I often see the poets struggle because they don‘t get enough feedback
Try not to get too much dependent on feedback. Show up no matter what. Write because you want to write. Write because you enjoy it. Show your words to friends or family. It is not about the quantity of feedback but of the quality.
Also try to find writing buddies or give other writers feedback. Then you get more likely some reviews as well. Try to connect on Instagram. Write to people you like in the comments. Create shout-outs for them. But only do it because you want to do it and not for getting a shout-out as well.
Then I see that people often struggle because they get a lot of unfollowing on Instagram. Again, don‘t get too dependent on feedback from others.I often get new followers from huge communities or bigger sites. Then I usually know that they are very likely to unfollow me again. Especially when I see that they follow just a tiny amount of people. So be realistic about this. But I follow them anyway. I just clean up from time to time my follower list and check who doesn‘t follow me anymore.For me it is more important to have my small crew of poets I really love who give me feedback on a deeper level.Here three more tips which bring you forward and at peace.
Make writing a daily habit. I learned for myself that it soothes my soul and organises my day. Keeps me more at peace with myself.Often we think we need a lot of time for writing. 15 minutes or half an hour are enough to write something beautiful. And of course you always can write longer. I started with once a week. So take baby steps.
There are many possibilities to connect with other writers.Put yourself out there. Try to take part in challenges. I often connect through this to amazing poets. Maybe you can reach out to two new poets you love but never have contacted before? Do it just from today!Tag your poems for live readings and show up on the live event.Don’t get too dependent on feature communities. It is nice when someone appreciates your art. But I for myself concentrate more on a small community of 5 to 10 people. As I just love to write and get longer comments and connect with people.
Send in your poems to magazines or anthologies. There are many free possibilities like the ones from Genre Urban Art @genreurbanart and several from @bymepoetry – especially Bymepoetry supports fresh voices.
10) Any poem or quote that’s your favourite from your work?
Sometimes we find the glimpse of spark within our darkest moments.
11) Miriam, you always hold a bunch of giveaway contest. Is there any slight chance of my win?
Yes! Just try it. Above all because I tend to give more presents away then I usually intend to. Because I always fell in love with all the poems people are sending I have to improve myself and will be more strict in future with this. Lol!
PS – Hope you enjoyed the amazing conversation with this amazing poet. The way she talks about certain things , you can see the miracle of words.
A big thank you Miriam for joining in and giving your precious time. All the best for your future projects. And you guys if you haven’t got your copy of “The Night Under the Shooting Stars” .Go get it. And let me know your thoughts on this?