Physical intimacy without romance is a soulless affair: Beau Taplin on writing about love
In an exclusive and first interaction with an Indian publication, the Australian writer and poet reveals his inspiration, calls himself a ‘romantic’, and describes his idea of a museUpdated: Jun 10, 2017 23:44 IST
Heartbreak, love, friendship, family, or just life, his words can easily be some of the most relatable ones to screenshot and save when you’re scrolling through the million quote handles you follow on Instagram. But some of us actually have been reading Beau Taplin’s work way before #Instapoets became a thing.
“Beau Taplin!” my friend squeals with glee, when I tell her about this piece that I’m writing. So, if you’re anything like me, I’m sure you have also wondered that behind those not-so-poetic, hard-hitting yet not always melancholic notes, who is Beau Taplin?
Born and raised in Lilydale, a small, quiet town in Melbourne, Australia, Beau Christopher Taplin is a self-published author with a huge fan following. People all across the world quote him, praise him, and love his work. So how did he start doing what he does in the first place?
“I’ve known some extraordinary loves and heartaches”
Beau confesses his first love was songwriting, even before he decided to try writing. “Between the ages of 17 and 25, I spent most of my time songwriting, but the music industry is an unforgiving one, and slowly, I lost my fire for it. I wanted to do something meaningful with my life. I wanted to make some kind of a mark. I spent the rest of the songwriting royalties I had left on self-publishing my first book, A Boy Without His Feathers, and never looked back,” he says.
That sounds almost poetic, going after finding that fire and letting it burn inside of you. But to write something that people can relate to requires drawing an inspiration. Beau believes the connections he shares with people have inspired that. “The connections I have shared with the people I’ve loved have always been a significant part of who I am. The ways they begin, grow, and even come apart inspire me. I’ve known some extraordinary loves and some extraordinary heartaches. I usually draw on these past experiences when I am writing,” he says.
The idea of a muse
“Home is not where you’re from. It is where you belong.
Some of us travel the whole world to find it. Others find it in a person.”
To a writer who writes about a person being home, there has to be a muse. What is his idea of a muse? “I think a muse can be a person, a place, or even a moment. It is anything that delivers a rush in your veins. A muse is what moves you to put your pen to the paper and write until you get the way it makes you feel in precisely the right words, “he says.
A day in the life of Beau Taplin
“I always make sure I set aside time to live and enjoy my life. After all, it is the living that inspires the art.”
When you read intense quotes, do you picture someone typing away furiously, burning the midnight oil, with endless cups of coffee (or a glass of scotch), crumbled papers lying all around? I know I see it that way sometimes.
Beau starts his day with a cup of coffee (because who doesn’t!). “I commit my mornings to writing down anything and everything that comes to mind. It could be a thought or a phrase or a concept for a larger piece of writing I can expand on later,” he says.
He spends his afternoons and evenings editing and polishing the ideas he came up with in the morning. “Of course, in the midst of all this, I always make sure I set aside time for living and enjoying my life. After all, it is the living that inspires the art,” he says.
“Describing yourself as an instapoet cheapens the art”
Beau used Tumblr to promote his writing before Instagram became the ideal platform to promote all forms of art. So what does he think about the trend of #instapoets? “The whole #instapoets thing has always kind of bothered me, but it’s definitely not because I believe there are writers more legitimate than others. It bothers me because I don’t think any writer should define themselves or their art by the social media platform they use to promote it. In my opinion, describing yourself as an #instapoet cheapens the beautifully meaningful, unique art you are creating,” he says.
“I would love to visit India”
I can vouch for the fact that a lot of Indian millenials follow Beau’s writing, screenshot it and quote it. Scroll through your own WhatsApp lists, I’m sure you’ll find some too. A lot of Indian fans have connected with him. “I receive a number of beautifully written emails from Indians week by week. Your precious country holds one of my most warm and enthusiastic fan bases by far. It is clear that your culture is deeply passionate about literature and poetry in particular, and I would so love to visit some day!” he says.
The romantic side
“I think there are too many people out there just looking for a warm body to sleep next to.”
Between writing so passionately about love, relationships, even ‘almost relationships’, what does Beau think about himself as? “I like to think of myself as a romantic. Authentic connections and worthwhile experiences are. If I’m going to share my time with another soul, I want it to matter…
He continues, “I think there are too many people out there just looking for a warm body to sleep next to. Physical intimacy is important, but without humour, flirting, fun and romance, I find it a soulless and empty affair,” he says.
He believes in the value of time. “I don’t date all women with the intention of looking for something more, but if I choose to share my time with you, I am going to put in the effort of knowing precisely who you are. I’m going to make sure I leave you with a memory. Otherwise, what’s the point?” he signs off.
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From HT Brunch, June 11, 2017
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First Published: Jun 10, 2017 23:44 IST