Episode 238 – This is Not a Real Interview with Jeff Cottrill

Mark interviews Jeff Cottrill, a fiction writer, poet, journalist and spoken-word artist based in Toronto, Canada, about spoken-word art and his new novel HATE STORY.

Prior to the main content, Mark welcomes a Patreon supporter, shares a personal update, comments from recent episodes and a word about this episode’s sponsor.

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During their conversation, Mark and Jeff talk about:

  • How Jeff had always been writing since he was young, including silly poems and sketches and stories
  • The writing becoming a bit more serious in nature in high school, and then later in university, where he was actually discouraged from writing for a while
  • Discovering the unique nature of spoken-word and open mics and then adapting his own style and adaptation of the art
  • How really bad workshops can be traumatizing and can set back a writer for years
  • The lack of (or overabundance of) life and energy within spoken-word poetry
  • Reading the room and playing off the crowd
  • Jeff’s Octobe 2020 article on Digital Journal called “Meet the Zoom Poets: How lockdown has connected artists globally”
  • A bit of a backstory about and a short reading from Jeff’s poem: ““This Is Not Real Poetry”
  • Jeff’s new novel Hate Story, which is a mix of satire and mystery that has a plot structure that’s like a loose parody of Citizen Kane
  • How social media gaffs can completely destroy a person’s life
  • The Justine Sacco 2003 Twitter fiasco
  • Trying agents, and then discovering Dragonfly Publishing in Australia for this book
  • The virtual book launch on March 19, 2022 that is going to include guest musicians and other authors, performance poets and creative artists
  • Advice Jeff would offer to budding writers and spoken word artists
  • And more…

After the interview, Mark talks about what writers can learn from witnessing really good spoken word performances as well as the idea that sometimes your idea for a project may not always come at the proper time.

Links of Interest:

Jeff Cottrill is a fiction writer, poet, journalist and spoken-word artist based in Toronto, Canada. He has headlined in countless literary series throughout Canada, the U.K., the U.S., France and Ireland over the last twenty years. His performance style is influenced by slam conventions, but subverts them with wit, ironic humour and a satirical tone.

His poem “This Is Not Real Poetry” is currently nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and his first novel, “Hate Story”, is coming soon from Dragonfly Publishing.

The introductory, end, and bumper music for this podcast (“Laser Groove”) was composed and produced by Kevin MacLeod of and is Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 

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