Writer’s Edit first met Kyra when she applied for an internship with us almost a year ago. She began as a contributor to our literary magazine, sharing her personal experiences and writing advice with us from early on. We knew Kyra had a special ear and a great passion for poetry, which was why she was our first choice for the Kindling Poetry Editor.
Over the last few months, Kyra has been working tirelessly with poets from all over the world whose work is being featured in Kindling.
Kyra Bandte is a writer and editor at Writer’s Edit, her specialties include our writing prompts and advice pieces. She loves similes and metaphors, and her greatest joy when writing and reading comes from finding likenesses in the most unlikely of things.
Kyra studied creative writing and English literature at the University of Wollongong, was the 2012 winner of the Questions Writing Prize, and has been published in Space Place & Culture, Tide, and Questions. She enjoys cut-and-past craft, cheesy reality TV shows, coffee, catalogues, and naps.
Three Questions with Kyra
1. What can we expect from the Kindling poetry list?
The poetry list features a range of emerging writers, each with their own unique voice. I chose poems based on whether or not they grabbed me, regardless of theme, style or length, so I know they’ll grab readers too.
While each piece is crafted to the same high standard they all explore very different things: from urban cities and seedy beaches to tumultuous lovers and the imagined lives of long-lost poets (just to name a few). There are spare, minimalist pieces and there are lines that are rich with alliteration and visceral imagery.
I know that not everyone is ‘into’ poetry, so luckily the selection caters to the tastes of all readers, whether they’re approaching poetry for the first time or renewing a long love affair with the art.
2. Has anything surprised you while working as an editor for Kindling?
What surprised me most was something that, subconsciously, I already knew: all writers are different. We all tackle problems in different ways and come up with unique solutions. It was always surprising to open my emails and see the way that each writer would take the feedback I gave and come up with fresh (and surprising) solutions to solve the issues at hand.
I was also quite surprised at the amount that some writers would challenge my suggestions (although this happened far less than often). As a fellow writer I understand the importance of sticking to your guns when you’ve made a conscious technical decision, but as a writer I also understand the importance of creating a work that is clear, accessible, and enjoyable for the reader. There’s no point having a beautiful work of art if the author is going to jab the reader in the eye in the second stanza and only they know why they’ve done it (how postmodern). So you have to find a balance between author, editor and reader.
3. What’s it been like collaborating with other poets?
Collaborating with anyone on a creative project will have its ups and downs. There are always times when people disagree, and that’s when it’s important to pick your battles. As I said previously, you have to find a balance.
Luckily, I had an amazing group of artists who valued my thoughts (what editor could ask for more), and even when we didn’t see eye-to-eye we could comfortably discuss our opinions and come to a conclusion that benefited the writing. Editing isn’t about taking sides, it’s about polishing a piece of writing to reach its full potential.
I had a blast editing every single poem which is all due to the very talented and understanding authors. I enjoyed the serious discussions over commas and full-stops, and giving smiley-face comments to the lines that I just kept falling in love with.
Kyra blogs at Little Rockets and can be found on twitter with @KyraBandte.