John Doyle


How long have you been writing? For long enough to know I should have taken that manager’s job in Dino’s Bar and Grill when it was offered to me.

What do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment as a writer? Ooooh… I supposed it’s when something I’ve being trying to write about for years finally happens; when subjects or events I want to write something about, but just don’t seem to happen finally do happen. When I started writing again in February 2015 after over 6 years of staring into an artistic black hole, I had an overwhelming desire to write poems in Irish (or “Gaelic” as middle-aged tourists from Asscrack, North Dakota annoyingly call it), and just couldn’t nail it. When it did happen, it was a poem called Gorm i nGlas (Blue in Green, inspired by the Miles Davis tune) and it felt like I was the Great Kahuna surfing on an asteroid storm in that closing sequence in 2001 : A Space Odyssey.

What projects of yours have been recently published? Two poetry collections – A Stirring at Dusk, and Songs for Boys Called Wendell Gomez, both on PSKI’s Porch. (Marc Pietrzykowski is a deity, and I will gladly collect heads for him should he request).

What are you currently working on and what inspired this work? My girlfriend’s garden after seeing how high the weeds have grown in the last 2 weeks… Oh, artistically? A series of short stories, inspired by the cabin fever and small-town horror of working in a hellhole off-license recently and reading far too much Raymond Carver and Flann O’Brien.

Where can we find your work? A New Ulster, PSKI’s Porch, the Galway Review, Tough Mama, Duane’s Poetree, Your One Phone Call, Degenerate Literature, A Clockwise Cat, Outlaw Poetry

How do you react to rejections? (a) Drink 10 cans of cheap-ass lager, and go for a swim in the local river in torrential rain after sundown wearing nothing but a Toga. (b) Listen to Jandek, read Ayn Rand, and fire-up my chainsaw, a.k.a. Trusty Rusty, and head downtown – then claiming “memory loss and low blood sugar levels” when the police call the next morning. (c) Be a mature and forgiving adult after seeing Colin Firth’s performance as Eric Lomax.

How do you react when one of your submissions is accepted for publication? You ever hear the finale of Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture…?

What is your best piece of advice on how to stay sane as a writer? (a) Never run out of ink. (b) Listen to lots of soul music. (c) Be grateful to whatever scientific or religious entity you believe in. (d) Be in love. (e) Be patient, your best poem is always ahead of you. (f) Don’t force it. (g) Don’t try to be angry, but don’t fight it when you are, hate isn’t always a bad thing.

What is your favorite book? Singing Underwater – Susan Wicks, Wuthering Heights – Emily Brontë.

Who is your favorite author? Honestly? Richard Scarry.

If you could have dinner with one fictional character, who would it be and why? Hannibal Lecter. To watch him recoil in horror as the tables are turned, so to speak.

What makes you laugh? Children tripping up carrying ice cream cones

What makes you cry? People putting on shitty radio stations in work. Conversations with single syllable merchants – “cool” nice” “lol” “okay” “nice” “lol” “cool” “okay” – Rusty, you’re needed old buddy.

What is your preferred drink while you write? Prune juice with molasses and vinegar.

What is your favorite food? I try not to eat on an empty stomach.

Shakespeare or Bukowski? George Jetson

Personal website/blog:


Books for sale and/or press: A Stirring at Dusk, Songs for Boys Called Wendell Gomez.