First Language(s): Bulgarian
Second Language(s): English, Arabic, Italian
Yanita Georgieva is a journalist and poetry writer based in London. She was born in Bulgaria but lived most of her life in Beirut and then Aberdeen. She writes because she has a terrible memory and is fascinated by regular people doing regular things. You can find her poems in Rusted Radishes and Pushing Out the Boat.
What was your favorite book as a child?
I loved Roald Dahl. Everything by him. But my favourite was probably “James and the Giant Peach”. My grandpa made me read War and Peace at a very young age — a terrible experience — so Roald Dahl allowed me to discover that reading can actually be fun and transport you to wonderful places. I used to spend my school breaks reading the books they had in the library, and when I had read all of them, my friend would dig in her parents’ bookshelf for new, hidden ones.
Do you remember the original reason or motivation why you started writing creatively?
I wrote a lot as a kid, mostly for fun and to preserve my memories. I went to a creative writing workshop in my early teens and discovered that I hated poetry. Years later, I was going through a really tough time dealing with grief and read “Floating, Brilliant, Gone” by Franny Choi. I couldn’t believe that poems could look, sound, and heal like that. That’s when I started writing poetry; now I can’t write much else.
What was the most adventurous or thrilling thing you ever did/experienced?
One year, I accidentally called my partner “babe”. It was June 25th and we celebrate the thrilling occasion every year.
Do you listen to music while reading or writing?
It’s hard to listen to anything while I’m writing. It’s a very quiet and intricate experience for me. When I get an idea for a poem, it all happens very quickly and requires a lot of focus for me to decipher my thoughts, wrangle them, and put them down on paper before the moment is gone. It’s like a cat coughing up a hairball, it needs a lot of concentration... and then, it’s a huge relief when it’s over. I don’t think cats enjoy listening to music while they do that sort of thing either.
How We Said Goodbye
Issue Fall '20