Friday, March 16, 2012

Steve Roggenbuck on Crunk Juice (interview)

Steve:  im in austin texas,staying with my friends katie and sam that i met from facebook!
Sent at 10:56 AM on Friday

me:  that's exciting, how long have you been out there

Steve:  about a week, im going to stay here for 2 more weeks,then im going to LA and up the west coast

me:  oh sweet man
are you meeting up with more people that you met on facebook
Sent at 10:58 AM on Friday

Steve:  yeah, actualy as i go west im planning to stay almost entirely with people i havent met in real life before haha.. on the east coast, i had met most of the people before

me:  nice, sounds like a project
Sent at 11:00 AM on Friday

Steve:  its kind of fun and even more its just a practical way for me to do what i want right now, because traveling is cheaper than paying rent, and at this point i can only make a little money doing hwat i want
Sent at 11:02 AM on Friday

me:  so you've been what, basically promoting Crunk Juice
Sent at 11:04 AM on Friday
me:  i'm looking up when that book was released

Steve:  february 29
Sent at 11:05 AM on Friday
Steve:  ive mostly been making videos and building my following/community in general. most of my day is spent on the sofa on my computer

me:  so would you say anything has changed since you released Crunk Juice
talk to me about the process of writing it
its really fun to read

Steve:  nothing major has changed for me. i like that there is a longer collection of my poetry for people to read now, and im excited for more people to read it
Sent at 11:09 AM on Friday
Steve:  CRUNK JUICE is a collection of things ive written over the past few years, like there are poems from my blog, twitter accounts, videos, lit journals, and a couple unreleased ones. so "writing it" was very gradual and i wasn't even thinking about the final project of the book.
Sent at 11:10 AM on Friday
Steve:  when i was compiling the material for the book, the main task was to cut out everything but my favorite stuff, and then arrange it in a satisfying order and format

me:  let's talk about your style
the interchangeable sentences
who influences you
what influences that

Steve:  what do you mean by interchangeable sentences?
Sent at 11:13 AM on Friday

me:  well, i mean the way sentences are arranged in your work
you place them in a specific order
but you can really place them wherever you want

Steve:  ok yeah i can say somthing about that

me:  maybe i used that term wrong
Sent at 11:16 AM on Friday

Steve:  im not sure it comes from any other writer. there are other writers who do it. i noticed a similar structure in sam pink's poems in "frowns need friends too," for example. a poem will be a sequence of 2-line bits or something
i think my skill as a writer is on 2 different levels
Sent at 11:18 AM on Friday
Steve:  (1) writing/recognizing very short bits of text that are really striking. whenever i read a poem by someone else, i can alway pick out my favorite lines, regardless of the context of the whole poem. i'm very focused on "good lines" whatever that actually means.
Sent at 11:20 AM on Friday
Steve:  (2) creating/recognizing an overall style, like on a really broad level, like the overall vibe of a writer's entire internet presence or across a whole series of books
Sent at 11:21 AM on Friday
Steve:  i'm not as good at working with the inbetween stuff.. so when i put together a long poem or a chapbook/book, a lot of the ordering, for example, is guesswork, or just predetermined by a structure. i'm not really as capable/intuitive at that level
Sent at 11:23 AM on Friday

me:  nice
so you're not getting to work right away another book or?
you just kind of work on it through your youtube videos and internet poetry huh?
Sent at 11:25 AM on Friday

Steve:  i wrote a bunch of poems on the train ride from chicago to austin. i'm thinking of doing another free e-book or two this spring/summer. and then i might release a book that collects all my e-books in one place. i like doing the e-books because it feels like a party when it's released because everybody can go read it immediately for free
Sent at 11:26 AM on Friday

me:  what's up with sxsw
Sent at 11:28 AM on Friday

Steve:  i dont know haha im here because i want to meet more of my internet friends, i havent gone to anything yet, ive just been sitting on the couch doing my work. on saturday we are doing a reading and i think its going to be fun as heck
Sent at 11:30 AM on Friday

me:  hahahahaha
alright so in a nutshell, what kind of writer is steve roggenbuck? what do you write about? what kind of story are you trying to tell?
Sent at 11:32 AM on Friday

Steve:  my heroes are walt whitman, the buddha, and lil b.. because they are people who not only created culture but also worked hard to spread it. walt whitman anonymously reviewed his own book, the buddha traveled and taught people about meditation, lil b goes hard social media. i think the work of my poetry isnt done until people actualy read it and it affects them. so that explains a lot of my internet presence/life. but also
Sent at 11:41 AM on Friday
Steve:  in terms of what i write "about" and the story im trying to tell, i think maybe 2 things, that are related.. and i maybe haven't even fully actualized them in my work yet, but idealy i will:
(1) i want to confront people with the fact of their life situation.. realy directly, like the fact that they will die someday, and that we dont actualy know the entire context of human life or the universe, and that most of the way we usualy live ignores that
(2) i want to embody a response to those things, that is like free and honest and playful. like when you realize that you're going to die, you dont care about grammar rules or getting reviewed in the new york times anymore..
in one of my videos i said "what's the most important thing you can do when you realize you're going to kick off and die?" and i answered it with "hug people" and i think that sums up what i am trying to do
Sent at 11:57 AM on Friday

me:  well i think you're getting a lot closer to that than anyone else i know
thank you for talking to me about your book crunk juice and your lavish lifestyle

Steve:  haha thank u for wanting to talk to me about it

me:  keep doing it man
what you're doing

Steve:  :)thank u i will, i love it,im really fulfilled and excited about it
Sent at 12:03 PM on Friday

buy crunk juice here

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