Today and tomorrow we will have Amber Koneval with us. She has a very interesting story to tell us.
Amber, it’s nice of you to come here and visit with us. Please tell us about yourself.
Well, where to start? I'm a twenty-year old Catholic-Christian, one of the middle children in a family of six siblings (three older, two younger). I'm slated to graduate from Regis University in December of 2013 with a double major in English and Religious Studies through the Honors track. I currently have a 3.8 GPA. I write poetry under my birth name, and woman's fiction under an alias. I've worked as a nanny, a retail sales clerk, an administrative assistant, a youth mentor and a Sacristan. My dream growing up was to become a youth minister, something I still hope to achieve somewhere in the midst of the whirlwind that is my writing life. My favorite animals are snakes and cats.
How long have you been writing?
I've been writing since I was in middle school, but really didn't enjoy it until my freshman year of college. I also didn't take my own writing very seriously until the spring of 2012, when I had my first poem accepted by Time of Singing, a wonderful literary journal of Christian lit. That was kind of my personal 'test' for whether or not I could really make it into nationally distributed publication. Since I passed that, I've kind of taken off- since then, I've been published in more than twenty different journals online and in print with more than sixty-some poems (not including my collection).
In what genre do you write?
Under this name, I write poetry. For the most part, as well, I write Christian poetry. Even my 'secular' poetry tends to have religious imagery, due to the fact that my faith is such a huge part of my life and I tend to understand most things through the light of my religious tradition.
Do you have a ‘day job?’
I have several, actually. On top of being a student, I am also currently the editor for my university's online newspaper, a nanny to two wonderful little girls, and a Sacristan for our university's on-campus chapel. I also write fiction, so I'm also always working on novel projects. I like being busy.
What have you written before this? (Previous to Drunk Dialing the Divine.)
'Drunk Dialing the Divine' is my first full collection, but I've had plenty poems published singularly before its debut. I also used to write articles for my parish newsletter when I was in high school.
Do you write a blog? Please give us the address.
My blog is The Amber of the Moment I mostly talk about the processes I go through to become a better poet and person, as well as keeping readers updated on my latest acquisition notices or upcoming readings. I also host a couple of guest posts from other like-minded writers (mostly Christian writers or other modern poets).
Tell us about your family. (Married or single,)
At the moment, I am still finishing up college so I've not been thinking too deeply about settling down just yet. I live about forty-five minutes away from my parents and siblings, and I'm very close to my entire family. I have five nieces and nephews already as well (from two of my older siblings) that I love to death. My family is my biggest support when it comes to my writing career. No one would know my name if it wasn't for their shameless promotion of everything I do, and it really keeps me going when I'm feeling stressed or hopeless. I know not every writer is so lucky, and I'm extremely grateful to God for their love and encouragement.