Everyone has a story to tell; each one of us writes poetry – some, without even realising. That stream of consciousness that runs in our veins? It’s poetry waiting to be written. We believe in the power of words, and that power is what urged us set up PoetsIN.

It’s because of those inner streams, that we are bringing you all a regular interview feature, Writer Profiles. An interview with a writer. This week it’s the beautiful Amanda Cary, aka Ashley Cavanagh.

Sit back, grab yourself a cuppa, and feast your eyes on this week’s writer profile.


What is your relationship with words and how has that evolved?

My relationship with words? Hmm.  Well, there are times words and me are milk and honey, and there are times we tear each others’ throats out.  As much as I love to write, it can be trying and wear me thin.  Some days, I meander willingly into catharsis and fantasies I’ve spinning around.  Other times, it’s akin to the creepy guy in the supermarket who won’t stop staring at your cleavage; I stay four aisles down at all times.


 How long have you been writing, what is your favourite style of writing and why?

I’m not certain when “began” writing, but I do remember the moment that someone caught onto me.  By my senior year in high school, I had perfected the art of bullshitting my way through essays.  This was common practice for me and was easy because I went to a very small school that wasn’t exactly elite.

I landed myself a spot in the advanced-placement government and economics class – not hard to do considering the school itself. It required more than I wanted to deliver, so I leaned on my ability to throw words together in what looked like an intelligent manner.  After handing in my third report, the teacher gave it back with an enormous red C grated across the top.  He had stapled it to a spiral notebook, and inside the front cover, he wrote, “Your stories do not belong on my desk.  Please put them in here instead.  Redo your paper.”

He then set me up with the English teacher, hoping I’d put this to use for regional competitions in creative writing.  But given that I didn’t research in the first place out of sheer laziness and disinterest; that never happened.

So far as my favorite style of writing – I prefer writing short stories.  They may not be my strongest point, but they are the most fulfilling for me.


 Many of us within this group have experienced times where writing has helped us overcome times of pain, describe the first time you realised the true of power of words.

As a teen, I wrote lyrics (what teen doesn’t).  I played guitar and vomited angst all over my bedroom walls, but I had no idea this was any kind of therapy.

The realization did finally rear its head when I began writing again during my previous marriage. My ex was not the nicest fellow to be married to (to say the least).  I was dumped into that relationship out of desperation and stupidity, and I wasn’t aware of how insidious the marriage was for a very long time because I had no foundation to pull from.  I could get into this, but I won’t bore you with it.

More interestingly, however, during that period, I began having fantasies of ways to end it.  At first these thoughts were rooted in divorce, but I was afraid of him and constantly questioning myself, so that didn’t happen right away.  I spent a while in the suicidal realm, but overtime, a part of me began to sit in the corners silently hoping he wouldn’t come home; wishing he’d be a little too drunk to maneuver the back roads safely enough to hammer through the door.

There were times he’d take off walking when he was angry and tanked.  I wasn’t the only person who knew he did this regularly.  One day, I had mortifying a light bulb moment: if I were to find him while he was out on a rage, and he was so drunk he didn’t know what was coming, I could get rid of him myself and people would think he just took a wrong step.  He could have “fallen” into the deep creek and smashed his head on the rocks.

As you can imagine, I scared the shit out of myself.  I wrote it down in a journal for fear that I was losing my mind altogether and there would be evidence of it, but it gave me an idea. This turned into 60,000 words of a dark mystery-thriller-horror-romance type novel before I finally left him.

It also allowed me to understand how dangerous my situation was, not only physically and emotionally, but mentally.  Yeah…you probably shouldn’t stay married to someone you daydream about violently killing and disposing of on the hush-hush.  Duh…

On the plus side, I have a backlog of covert murder scenarios, as well as various other methods of sadistically torturing people that work really well in the horror vein.

I did speak to a counselor, and apparently this is a normal and HEALTHY – believe it or not – thought process for someone in an abusive relationship that leads to the realization of the importance of departure.  Her words were, “You left.  That’s what those thoughts are leading to.  If you’d followed through, then we’d have a problem.”  I no longer fantasize about killing people, not even him – not seriously, anyway.

We divorced, and I never finished the book – funny that.


 Many writers love to read. What is your favourite book and why?

Oh wow.  This is always a really difficult question for me to answer.  In the past, I’ve said “The Road” or named some other novel I particularly liked, but to be honest, I don’t have one.  I’ve loved many that have been my favorite while turning its pages, only to be replaced by another once I put it away and picked up a new one.

When I was a girl, I read a short novel called “Stonewords” at least seven times.  I lost count after that.  I can’t remember the author, but I would recommend it to anyone with children who love a good ghost story.  Perhaps I related to the need to have a friend who was an unseen reflection of my own inner dankness, or maybe I saw an escape in that book from my family situation.  Perhaps I envied the fact that her mother had exited her life and left her with loving grandparents or that she had a space all to herself in their backyard.  I’m not sure, but I couldn’t move on from it for quite some time.


Sum up yourself in a haiku or micropoem.



“For Sale”

Knocking under hood

Bit of leaking at the dash

Ample trunk storage


We all have moments where we truly connect with words we read. What quote inspires you the most. Why?

Oh, goodness.  Well, how about this dry little wit baby:

“A man’s character may be learned from the adjectives which he habitually uses in conversation.”

-Mark Twain


Describe your writing process.


Write furiously for a year.  Avoid it adamantly for another year.  Occasionally spend weeks drawing up detailed outlines and intricately plotted novels, and then forget where you saved them on your hard drive.


Writer’s block, real or a myth?

I would say that’s a real thing, mmm’kay?


What is your favourite word?

My favorite word is…thesaurus?


Finish this sentence… Words are the epitome of…

Words are the epitome of your Great Aunt Gertrude.  She’s sweet and all, and you love her, but her breath smells odd and she’s sometimes a bit too intrusive for comfort.



Our huge thanks to Ashley for this interview. You can check her our on Tumblr hereYou can also find her Facebook page here

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