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An Interview with Tanicia Pratt, author of Blue


Tanicia Pratt is an interdisciplinary poet, writer, and artist from the Bahamas. She began her career in Nassau’s underground poetry scene, dedicating years to spoken word performance before moving to London to study experimental poetics. Tanicia defines her practice as a spiritual act, creating space for divine connection, introspection, transformation, and ancestral reverence. She is currently interested in writing through the body within the Caribbean landscape and an afro-feminist lens.

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

Writing has always been a natural inclination for me. Since primary school, I remember always having notebooks—whether it was gifted to me or I made it myself. Writing was a way for me to escape from the world and to release my emotions.

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

I’ve worked so many jobs and in so many fields—retail, banking and marketing being the most common ones!

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

This is so funny… so, the title actually came to me in a caption I was writing for my Instagram post (lol)! It had the word “blue” in it. Since then, everything that was blue or mentioned blue stood out to me. The title was what created my collection. From that one word, I followed those feelings of blueness and allowed the poetry to flow.

How did it feel when you first saw your book cover? Or when you first held your book in your hands?

I was first sent a series of variations by the amazing illustrator, Edinah Chewe. There were so many beautiful options to choose from, but when I saw the last option, I instinctively knew this was the cover. So, before it was even printed I was so excited for the book. Then, when I finally received my proof I just fell in love. The velvety feel, the vibrant blues—words cannot describe the pride and excitement you have when you see your book come together for the first time.

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

“Lullaby of Birdland” – Sarah Vaughn

“George Symonette” – Dreams

“Empty Bed Blues” – Bessie Smith

“Cry Me a River” – Dinah Washington

“Black & Blue” – Louis Armstrong

“Solitude” – Billy Holiday

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

I don’t have a perfect reader in mind. My only hope is that readers discover their own blue(s) in this collection. Everyone has a blues, and it all looks different depending on where you’re from, or how you identify. But we all have one…or many.

What was the most rewarding/meaningful part of publishing your book?

Connecting with readers has been the most rewarding part of this journey. Self-publishing a book is not easy, but being able to know that my work has touched or inspired someone else makes it all worth it.

What new writing projects are you currently working on? Or, other projects that are not writing?

Right now, I am just enjoying the process of inspiration. While I am working on a few creative projects, I am also practising being in the present and writing about the small things.

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

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