Skip to content

An Interview with Kimberly Hockaday


Kimberly Hockaday is a poet and author from Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, and is the 2004 Distinguished Student Poet of Eastern North Carolina. She created a monthly poetry reading gathering called Poetry Reading Extravaganza in 2013 and has had her works published in newspapers and literary magazines.

Kimberly is a former contributor to Real Hot Magazine and has performed at a number of venues including Art Out Loud in Roanoke Rapids and the Juneteenth Celebrations in Garysburg, North Carolina. She is passionate about the arts and enjoys writing poetry with a purpose. She hopes her writing not only entertains but also educates and inspires her readers.

Kimberly Hockaday is 2018 Top Female Author in Poetry winner.

Who/what made you want to write? Was there a particular person, or particular writers/works/art forms that influenced you?

I believe writing and my passion for writing has always been a gift from God because I have just always knew at a very young age that I would one day become a writer. I can’t recall how young I was but I do remember that I was a big fan of the great Maya Angelou. At a very young age I was just fascinated by her poetry and whenever I heard her speaking on television. I can recall whenever I would be asked when as child what did I want to be when I grow up, I would always say, “I want to be a writer like Maya Angelou.”

What inspired you to start writing this book?

The Haunted Typewriter was a personal challenge. Most of the themes of my previous books dealt with a serious topic. I wanted to go in an entire different direction this time as well as how I chose my words. I like writing dark and twisted poems but have never published those type of poems. When I was in college I remember my creative writing professor calling me into his office to discuss a poem I had submitted. He told me that I was really great in creating that type of poetry and if I continued writing in that genre that I would one day become a famous writer. So, I just decided to go back to my favorite style of writing and I also wanted to pay tribute to Edgar Allen Poe in which I did by making references to his popular works throughout the book. With this book I just wanted to have fun writing. I always want my books to entertain, inspire, and educate. This book was created to entertain.

Tell us the story of your book’s title. Was it easy to find, or did it take forever?

It took some time for me to come up with the title. The Haunted Typewriter isn’t the original title. When I created this book I imagined a character in my head and titled the book with this character’s name. My publisher loved the book but felt like even though it was clearly fictional, that it would be wise not to have a name as the title so not to run into any legal issues. So I began thinking of other titles that could work and out of nowhere, Haunted Typewriter just popped into my head. I felt like it would go well with the twisted theme of the book. I wanted to have my readers to get really pulled into the poems. leaving them mystified and full of questions. I imagined people discussing my book and trying to figure out who is writing the poems. Is it an insane man, the devil, or an actual haunted typewriter?

If your book had a soundtrack, what are some songs that would be on it?

The poems in my book are purposefully written to be confusing and twisted. Not scary but creepy. So I would imagine a soundtrack that would be a mix of sad, haunting music. With that said, I would have “My Immortal” by Evanescence, “Lonely” by Janet Jackson, “One More Try” by George Michael, “Love Is a Battlefield” by Sada Vidoo, and “In the Air Tonight” by Phil Collins.

Describe your dream book cover.

My dream book cover would be a dramatic eye-catching cover that would make people stop and pick up the book if they saw it on the shelf. All of my book covers are colorful but I love black and white photography. I have always felt like black and white pictures always seem to be able to illuminate such profound emotions that just aren’t captured the same way in colorful photos.

What other professions have you worked in? What’s something about you that your readers wouldn’t know?

I have worked in the school system, did a little retail, and have worked in other professions. I would still like to one day be able to have a writing career. What my readers would not know about me is my overall passion and love for writing. All of my books published have been poetry but poetry isn’t the only type of genre I do. I enjoy writing stories just as much as I love writing poetry. I do plan to eventually publish novels. I would even love to one day write a script and see it make it to the big screens. I absolutely love writing.

What books did you read (for research or comfort) throughout your writing process?

I did not read any books throughout my writing process but I did go back and read different poems by Edgar Allen Poe and other great poets of similar styles to help me get in the right head space and bring to life the character I had created for the book. I also used the dictionary at times to look up all the meanings of certain words so I could really have fun with twisting words.

What is one thing you hope readers take away from reading your book? How do you envision your perfect reader?

I have always said that I want my books to inspire, educate, and entertain. The Haunted Typewriter was written for pure entertainment and I felt it was a perfect book to release around Halloween. My perfect reader would be a reader who is open-minded and able to get some type of connection and enjoyment with what they read.

Are you a writer, too? Submit your manuscript to Atmosphere Press.

atmosphere press

Atmosphere Press is a selective hybrid publisher founded in 2015 on the principles of Honesty, Transparency, Professionalism, Kindness, and Making Your Book Awesome. Our books have won dozens of awards and sold tens of thousands of copies. If you’re interested in learning more, or seeking publication for your own work, please explore the links below.