Devika Mathur is a bilingual poet who resides in India. Her work has been published in Madras Courier, Kitaab.org, Selcouth Station, Modern Literature, Indian Review, Whisper and the Roar, and Sudden Denouement Literary Collective, to name a few. She has written for more than 40 journals and loves to share similar thoughts through her initiative; Olive skins- a virtual platform for all surrealist writers.
She was recently a part of the ‘Best of Mad Swirl’ anthology and has work included in the astounding anthology BymePoetica vol 2., as well as, All the Lonely People. She is a curator for the Whisper and the Roar writing collective and loves to express her thoughts through her blog. Find Devika’s work at My Valiant Soul.
Dustin Pickering: When you began your writing habits, how did you learn your craft?
Devika Mathur: When I started, everything was upside down with a bit of involvement of my heart and soul into my pieces. I was too depressed when I started writing. That’s how I perceive it, eventually, It started making sense to me- the process, the wordplay. the sentiments, environment, and political upheaval which are so imperative that they can boost one’s mind and writing. It never came to me instantly, I took time to realize what works well and what doesn’t. I am learning each day through reading, writing, and stumbling upon a plethora of art over the internet and through books. So, precisely, I am learning my craft still and haven’t perfected it.
Dustin Pickering: Over time, what moments in life have developed your writing styles and approaches?
Devika Mathur: I had struggled with my mental stability when it comes to balancing emotions- dealing with anxiety, and depression back when people were hardly talking about it. I started with confessional poetry and read enough of Plath and can never devour enough of her writing and brains. She influenced most of my writings and I gradually shifted towards Surrealism and existentialist realms of life.
Dustin Pickering; As a reader, what do you find lacking in today’s literary culture?
Devika Mathur: Honesty. There is everything present in today’s literature but honesty. The true implications of words, convulsions in heart and body- the utterly vague formations of the human mind, and society- all are lacking in some or the other ways. Then we say- Art is subjective, but I see people lingering with their opinions and the ultimate judgments. The consistent eye to read the ink with sheer modesty and truthfulness is lacking.
I feel Literature is paradigmatic and it needs to exist inside the heart of a person rather than just the mind.