Interview with Barbara Morrison Runner Up in the WOW! Quarter 2 2023 Creative Nonfiction Contest with "Silver"

Sunday, July 09, 2023

Congratulations to Barbara Morrison and Silver, and to all of the other contestants and winners of the WOW! Women on Writing Quarter 2 2023 Essay Contest!
Barbara's Bio: 
Barbara Morrison, who writes under the name B. Morrison, is the author of a memoir, Innocent: Confessions of a Welfare Mother, recently named Best Nonfiction Audiobook by Independent Press Awards, and two poetry collections, Terrarium and Here at Least. As a former welfare recipient, she speaks about poverty and food insecurity and volunteers with Edible Brattleboro to create help-yourself gardens and food preparation and preservation learning experiences. Her writing has appeared in anthologies and literary journals such as Little Patuxent Review, The Sun Magazine, Tiny Lights, and elsewhere. She conducts writing classes and workshops and provides editing services. You can learn more about her work at
*****interview by Crystal J Casavant-Otto*****
WOW:  I hope everyone has already read Silver, and if not I recommend giving it a read and then returning here for our interview! Thank you for writing this essay. What is the take-away you'd like readers to gain from Silver? 
Barbara:  De-cluttering seems to be on many people’s minds lately. With this essay I wanted to add another way to consider your possessions. Each thing that has been with us for a long time has accumulated a history, one that is entwined with our own. That seemingly innocuous item—perhaps a dress or a vase or a cup—has actually become a magical memory box. When you lift the lid and start drawing out the memory fragments, you may be surprised to find them coming together in unexpected ways, perhaps giving you a new way to think about your past and how it has become your present. You may still be unsure whether to keep the item or give it away, but you will know more about its value. 

WOW: That's great advice - with a household of seven plus, I'm often overwhelmed with the "stuff." Speaking of advice, what advice would you give to others (specifically female authors) when it comes to self care?
Barbara: There was a year—a significant birthday year—when I decided to do as many wild things as I could, all the things that I thought I would maybe do someday. No, I didn’t get a tattoo, but I did consult a fortune teller. The highlight of the reading was something she said that I think is great self-care advice: Try to nurture yourself rather than just pampering yourself. To this day I look for what will nurture me. Of course, I still pamper myself sometimes, but find it important to remember the difference.
WOW: I can honestly say I didn't see that answer coming from that particular source - you've surprised me in a most pleasant way. I love that you pass along that great insight - I think we could all use more nurturing! Let me ask you this; who is your support - what have you found to be most supportive in your writing life as well as in life in general? You are clearly a support to so many - but who is there for you? 
Barbara In my memoir Innocent, I wrote about my struggles as a single parent living in poverty. That experience taught me about the value of community. I was surrounded by many people who, although they had very little, were surprisingly generous. Others reached out a helping hand at critical moments. Along with my family, my rich tapestry of support includes my friends and social communities.
WOW: I know you have me intrigued and looking to read more in your memoir - I'm including a link to Innocent so others like myself can grab a copy.   I feel community is so crucial as a mom and a writer, but that is not always the case. What role has writer's groups and or other writers played in your life? 
Barbara:  As a writer, I again find my greatest support in my community. The various writing groups I belong to, both organizations and small critique groups, have supported, taught, and inspired me. I have tried to pay it forward by volunteering, teaching, providing editing services, and creating events for readers and writers that are free, inexpensive, or by donation. I also try to amplify the work of other writers by reviewing books in my blog and by liking and sharing their posts. We can accomplish so much when we work together!

WOW: Thank you ever so much Barbara for sharing your essay and your thoughts today - we look forward to reading more of your work! Congratulations again! 

Interviewed by Crystal J. Casavant-Otto who just keeps on keeping on and can be found blogging and sharing on social media hashtag #raisingkidsandcattle

 Check out the latest Contests:


Powered by Blogger.
Back to Top