Welcome to Creekside Café Cendrine Marrouat. I have to comment here that your poetry journal, Auroras and Blossoms feels a little kismet as I’m from Aurora, North Carolina. Life is strange and so are most people I know, but welcome to my virtual café.
Cendrine: We were probably meant to meet. 😉
I would say that life is very interesting.
Thank you for having me! I appreciate the opportunity.
Sherri: I guess you know all about strange, from reading your promo on your book “Bad. Pitches. Period. 30 Flavors of Spammy Emails” I had to chuckle at just the name.
Cendrine: The first part of the title comes from the name of an old blog that I created years ago to highlight the spam I received. I mostly featured terrible pitches from self-proclaimed marketing gurus. The few people who read it found the concept hilarious.
Sherri: I cringed wondering if one of my bad pitches might have shown up in your book, but I think I’m good, maybe. We’ll talk later.
Tell me, how does a serious poet and photographer end up writing a comedy book about spammy emails?
Cendrine: I don’t show names, so you wouldn’t know. ah ah ah
I am a very private person. I do not share much of life on social media. But my friends know that I love a good laugh. Actually, I laugh every day.
So, why a humor book about spammy emails? Because I could. When I used to be a social media coach in the 2010s, thousands of emails landed in my inbox every week. Most of them were terrible pitches from different people.
At first, I felt really annoyed and had a few heated discussions with the culprits, who almost never realized the errors of their ways. Then, I chose to look at spam as entertainment. My focus shifted and I ended up saving it in a specific folder. Every evening, I ended my day smiling (and sometimes laughing) thanks to spam!
Sherri: As I was reading your promo on your blog, I was struck but the fact that an author of more than twenty books would have doubts about writing. Could you tell us about your doubts and how you pushed through to create this book?
Cendrine: I have never doubted my writing abilities. In the case of Bad. Pitches. Period. 30 Flavors of Spammy Emails, the problem was that I had never delved into comedy before. I had no clue how my sense of humor would be received by readers.
But then, I remembered that I had had a first time with poetry, photography, social media, and theatre too. So, self-doubt didn’t last long.
Sherri: You also talk about the cover on your blog, I believe you call it “cheesy.” I’m not sure if I should be embarrassed or not, but I like it. It catches the eye and makes me want to pick it up and see what it is about.
Cendrine: Thank you! And please, don’t be embarrassed. I called the cover “cheesy” and designed it that way on purpose. Spam is cheesy in itself. Look at the font some spammers use!
In my mind, spam is the same thing as the badly designed websites of the 1990s-early 2000s…
Sherri: According to your biography, you are a French-born Canadian photographer, poet, author, and the co-founder of FPoint Collective and Auroras & Blossoms Poetry Journal, tell us first about where you are from and then more about your other works.
Cendrine: I was born and raised in Toulouse, France, and moved to Canada in 2003.
In 17 years, I have worked in many fields: translation, language instruction, social media coaching and training, content creation and curation, photography, poetry, theatre, art reviews, blogging, and journalism. I am the author of 25 books in different genres.
I am the creator of the Sixku (poetry form) and the Reminigram (photography genre). As a photographer, I specialize in nature, closeup, and black-and-white images. I also teach French to adults and occasionally advise clients on social media strategy.
I am always very busy, but in a good way. I have achieved a lot in almost two decades, which often prompts people to think that I am older than I actually am. lol
Sherri: What or who do you think has been the greatest influence on your work?
Cendrine: Life and Kahlil Gibran. I love sharing the lessons I have learnt.
Sherri: Looking through your list of titles I’m in awe of the work you have created. The time and effort it must have taken to do all of the research and data gathering is staggering. Which book was the most difficult to write? Do you have a favorite book?
Cendrine: Thank you for the compliment!
Actually, the only major research I did was for my play titled In the Silence of Words. As a former English major, I studied theatre (and Shakespeare). But, as far as writing a play was concerned, I was a complete newbie. So, I spent several months educating myself. I read guides and researched names.
I also wanted to make my story as realistic as possible. As such, I studied the importance of movement.
No book has been really challenging. Unlike many authors, I don’t pressure myself into reaching a specific number of words. I don’t have deadlines. I just write at least ten minutes every day.
After 25 books, it’s hard for me to choose a favorite. For the sake of this interview, let’s just say that Bad. Pitches. Period. 30 Flavors of Spammy Emails is the one for now.
Sherri: Cendrine, it has been delightful to have you here at my Creekside Café, I hope one day we can meet in person. Thank you for stopping by and thanks to our readers for dropping in and having a drink with us. If you enjoyed our interview, check out Cendrine’s books and social media links below.
Until next time, y’all have a great day.
Cendrine: Thank you again very much, Sherri! I hope we meet in person someday too!