Carmel Valley author releases second edition of poetry collection
Carmel Valley resident Susan J. Farese, a retired nurse who has worked in public relations for the last 10 years and is the owner/president of SJF Communications, has released a second edition of her poetry collection, “Poetic Expressions in Nursing: Sharing the Caring,” which was first released in 1993.
Farese will have an author table, where the paperback will be available for sale, at the San Diego Writers, Ink grand re-opening “Book Selling Bonanza/Writers Meet Up” on Saturday, Aug. 14 from noon to 4 p.m. The event will take place at 2730 Historic Decatur Road, Barracks 16 #204, San Diego, 92106. Visit www.sandiegowriters.org for more information.
In a Q&A, Farese discusses how her past experiences and current state of the COVID-19 pandemic led to a timely moment to pay homage to nurses and other health care workers with a second edition of her poetry. Answers were lightly edited for clarity and conciseness.
Q: What inspired the book?
Farese: The first edition was released in 1993 as a result of nursing stories and family stories in my heart. And so I decided to republish a second edition this year because of the pandemic and how nurses have been impacted with stress and burnout and depression from taking care of people with this horrible pandemic. Even though I’m not clinically working anymore, I just have a feeling to support nurses with their stress by releasing this book so that nurses can validate their stories through poetry and learn a little bit about how poetry can heal and be cathartic and therapeutic for them as well.
Q: Your poetry is based on your real-life experience as a nurse?
Farese: I’ve been licensed as a nurse since 1978, I have a bachelor’s and master’s degree in nursing and I spent a little bit more than 12 years as a military nurse in the Navy and the Army, from 1978-90, so that’s why the book was originally written in ‘93. And I started writing poetry in ‘91, the year after I got out of the Army.
Q: Are there any poets whom you admire and have influenced your work?
Farese: Amanda Gorman right now, and then some songwriters like Bruce Springsteen, Lin Manuel-Miranda. I’m not really a literary poet, as far as having a creative arts degree. I have a master’s in nursing, and a bachelor’s in nursing. I value lyrics and I write free-form poetry from the heart, so rather than literary, I pour out my heart either in rhyme, or not rhyming, or haiku.
Q: Having worked in public relations, is it a different kind of experience to have to promote yourself?
Farese: It’s very weird because I’ve been doing PR since 2011, pretty religiously here in San Diego, starting with five years of theater PR. And then in 2016 I went freelance, (working with) more theaters, musicians, many authors recently and some businesses and filmmakers. I’ve been working with so many authors that there’s almost a formula, and when it comes to me it’s like, this is really weird not having a publicist and being the publicist. I’m used to promoting and cheerleading for other people.
Q: Did you have a particular audience in mind when you first wrote the book?
Farese: Definitely for nurses and those who care and love them and support them, and for anyone who wants to know more about some of the stories that are in poem form from my life, to introduce them to the concept of nursing poetry. In my book I have poems about my family, like when my dad had a heart attack and then open heart surgery, and my grandmother with Alzheimer’s. Things about role models and all about nursing in general. Night shift, day shift, cardiac arrest, a little bit on HIV because this was originally written in the ‘90s.
Farese’s book is available at amazon.com and more. For additional information, visit sjfcommunications.com.
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