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Life & Work with Callan Fuqua of Chandler

Today we’d like to introduce you to Callan Fuqua.

Hi Callan, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
The Deadbeat Poets Zine started as a way for me to offer a comprehensive, encouraging space for people to share their writings using unique prompts. I realized through my pursuit of trying to submit to publications that many were either difficult to research, required large deposits, or required to have significant experience. This seemed counterintuitive to the point of what poetry and creativity should be, so I wanted to provide a zine where people could feel like they could be heard.

We all face challenges, but would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
It has its ups and downs. We are not producing shows, but I was offering this for a period. Many locations in Arizona require very large deposits to host events at their venue. I was shocked that even when I started, the zine was not for profit. They still required between $250 to upwards of $8,000. I was able to find some places that offered somewhat reasonable prices, but with what the zine currently makes in sales, I’m just not able to offer events right now. I hope that changes. I do not produce it for money at all. I will never charge anyone admission to events, which may be a contributing factor to costs. But I emphasize how important it is to keep opportunities available for any community that may not be able to pay. Poetry should be open to all.

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar, what can you tell them about what you do?
Currently, I work in health insurance to “pay the bills,” but my passion has always been poetry. I’m 28 now, but I’ve been writing since I was 14 and had been living in the Phoenix area since I was 18. I have performed my writing at events from 2019 to early 2020. Additionally, I have written film reviews for a website for a period, and I even had a poem of mine performed with The Bridge Initiative at Tempe Center for the Arts, which is kind of crazy. I try to keep myself humble, as I was raised to be, but I am mainly proud of how many amazing people I’ve met in Arizona. We all exist here in our little rabbit holes away from the heat, from writers, musicians, artists, and more. What would “set me apart” is my focus on accountability regarding social issues and never staying silent. I, as well as others, have been very vocal about predatory behavior from some artists in Arizona and promote safe environments for people when it comes to producing work. I think that’s vital to what a community, which I’d call a “village,” is supposed to be.

Alright, so to wrap up, is there anything else you’d like to share with us?
The Deadbeat Poets Zine is available for online and physical purchase at deadbeatpoets-az.com. We are also on Patreon and encourage people to sign up for a membership to receive words or submit donations which can be done online.

Pricing:

  • $3 (smaller zines)
  • $6 (larger zines)
  • $1.99 (one offs)

Contact Info:

  • Website: deadbeatpoets-az.com
  • Instagram: azdeadbeatpoets
  • Facebook: deadbeatpoetsaz
  • Twitter: azdeadbeatpoets

Image Credits
All images are royalty free and used fairly.

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