Each week we will be featuring one member for their outstanding contributions to the Figment community.
This week we’re featuring Kat Brown! Check out five of her stories along with her interview questions below!
What do you enjoy most about Figment and its community?
- From a technical standpoint I really appreciate how easy Figment is to navigate. I learned my way around fairly quickly, because the formatting is so user-friendly. Socially, Figment’s online writing community has given me a real boost of confidence with regards to my writing. It’s given me the opportunity to meet others like myself who share a passion for it and we get to exchange ideas, in a fairly judgment-free zone, helping each of us to stretch and grow. Finally, even when I launch something brand new, something I’ve never tried before, I’m not afraid of falling flat on my face, because even if I do, there are always so many wonderful people there to pick me up.
What is your favorite story that you have shared on Figment and why?
- This is a hard one to answer, because my poetry are like children to me and as any good parent knows you’re not supposed to play favorites, so let’s just keep this between us, shall we? If I have to choose, it would be “The Risk of Vulnerability”. This piece is very personal to me as it speaks to a time in my life when I experienced tremendous loss of friendship due to extricating myself from a cult I’d been a part of for twenty-seven years. As you can imagine trust has not come easy to me, but as you will see if you read this piece, there is always room for hope.
Where do you find inspiration to write and keep writing?
- Most of what I’ve written is inspired from life-events both past and present. I try to write from a true place, because I want the words that I write to resonate with my readers. I want them to be able to see, even if in the smallest measure, a part of themselves in what they read. So I guess you could say my readers are also part of the inspiration behind my writing, especially the teens I write for. I teach voice as my profession and much of what I write is in response to the stories and questions I am asked by them on a weekly basis.
What is the last book that you read?
- The last book that I read was “The Orphan Train” by Christina Baker Kline and if you have not read anything by this author, then let me be so bold as to say, you are really missing out. I not only love her story telling, but I love her writing style. Presently I’m reading another book by her called “Desire Lines” and all I can say is she does not disappoint. She delivers every time!
Do you have any advice for other Figgies looking to improve their writing?
- First, don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. No matter how good or bad your stuff is, you’ll never know how to measure its potential or expand your growth as a writer, unless you get the eyes of others on your work. Also, don’t internalize negative critiques. I firmly believe that a review can be rendered that is honest and instructive without crushing the creative capacity of the recipient. When you get the occasional scathing critique from someone who is desensitized with regards to the impact their approach may have on the recipient, here’s what you do. You chew up the meat, if there is any, and you spit out the bones, then move on. Finally, write for the love of it, just for the love of it!
Congratulations again, Kat and thank you for sharing talent, inspiration and advice with us! Be sure to check out some of her work below.
The inspiration for(Paint The Door Blue)came from a beautiful book called, “The Beauty of Different”. In this book the writer tells a story about entering a neighborhood where all of the doors were painted red, save one. That door was painted blue. She describes being magnetically drawn to that door, because it was different and stood out. I think that’s how we affect others when we’re not afraid to paint our doors blue!
This poem speaks to the reality that we must all learn to embrace the good and bad that happens over our lifetime because like it or not, it’s part of our story and all of it has contributed to the person we are today.
The Risk of Vulnerability is about the risk we all take every time we decide to drop our guard and let a person into our lives. Making ourselves vulnerable to hurt, rejection, selfishness, love, kindness, compassion. Friendship can be a two-edged sword and we have to reconcile that reality when we let people in. Although, there are risks in seeking true friendship, we have to continue to take them, because out there somewhere are people just like us who are looking, and if we don’t give up, we’ll eventually find each other.
This was written to acknowledge two beautiful introverts in my life and to remind all of us to listen when introverts speak even if it’s not in a way you’d would expect.
One of the few things in this life that we can lay claim to are our dreams. They’re what keep us in motion, whether realized or not. So, hold them close and don’t ever put them on the market. They’re NOT for Sale!
Congratulations again, Kat!
Let us know who you think should be our next Featured Fig!
– The Figment Team