We had the good fortune of connecting with Morgan Liphart and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Morgan, what do you attribute your success to?
Without a doubt, the most important factor behind my success is not being afraid of rejection. The ability to hear the word “no” from my industry again and again and keep going has been absolutely critical for my writing career. A fear of rejection holds back so many writers or people who deep down want to be writers. They are scared to fail. They are scared to put their work out there and have it not be liked, not be chosen, not be bought. This fear is understandable because a piece of writing is like a tiny piece of your heart going out into the world. When it is rejected, it hurts. But this fear must be conquered. As a writer, you must curl up with the word “no” like a warm blanket on a snowy day. You have to get so comfortable with hearing it that it no longer phases you. It no longer has power over you. This is how you realize that you are actually stronger than the rejection and it cannot destroy you. Then, you’ll be able send your work out into the world so fearlessly and persistently that it’s only a matter of time until you finally hear that wonderful “yes.” In my career, it’s easy to see the successful moments. This is what gets splashed all over social media and included in my author biography. But this is not the whole story. Hidden behind the success is a whole pile of work that no publisher wanted to pick up. For instance, it’s easy to see and celebrate the success of the University of Oxford picking up my poem “Barbados” for their literary magazine last year. But hidden behind that success is the 31 magazines (yes, I did keep track!) that turned down my work last year. In order to get my work placed at Oxford, I had to continue to believe in myself enough to push past these rejections and keep trying. This is the lesson that I learned for myself and I want to pass on to other creatives: You are stronger than your fear. You are stronger than any rejection that comes your way.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I write contemporary poetry that has been placed in literary journals and magazines all over the United States and England. The connecting thread in all of my work is that I pull the reader fully into the experience of the narrator of the poem. I want the reader to taste, smell, hear, and feel what it’s like to be in the narrator’s world. No matter how different the reader is from the narrator, they now understand how what it’s like to be in a particular environment or in a particular situation and now they can never unknow that. This is important because I believe this builds empathy and understanding between people from different walks of life. I am most proud of my new poetry chapbook, Barefoot and Running. As I was writing it, I found the poems in the book to be very healing. And I hope readers find them healing as well. The poems create this world where it’s safe to work through the hard stuff because you can come out safely on the other side healed, whole and ready to start again. No experience is too big or too bad to be healed. Right now there is so much healing needed in our country and around the world, and I hope to bring a little sliver of hope and light during this time. I’ve found myself repeating over and over these lines from the book when things have gotten tough during this past year (2020 was a doozy, wasn’t it!?): “The truest thing I know is the light will find you. Even there. The bursting and beautiful things meant for you have been running through the streets to find you screaming nothing but your name. Life works like that. You can never be abandoned.” Barefoot and Running is available at Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and Bookshop.org (for those indie bookstore lovers out there).

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I would take them to Ohana Grille for an epic brunch. Their Hawaiian fusion food is incredible. Plus, it’s right next to Sloan’s Lake so we would have an amazing view of the lake and the downtown skyline while we sip our bottomless tropical mimosas.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I have received so much love and support from the Colorado community ever since I moved here from Illinois in 2014. This encouragement has given me the courage to reach high for my dreams, so I know would not be the woman I am today without it. In particular, I met a wonderful couple, Kathy and John Rosenbloom, when I was attending law school in Boulder. They have been such a strong support system. I’m tearing up just thinking about it! It has been so beautiful to know that, win or lose, they are always cheering for me.

Website: morganliphart.com

Instagram: @mliphart

Other: Buy Barefoot and Running (Amazon): https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1735957909/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=morganliphart-20&camp=1789&creative=9325&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=1735957909&linkId=acb46679cede2b6b9998fda31aca426a Buy Barefoot and Running (Barnes & Noble): https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/barefoot-and-running-morgan-liphart/1138411141

Image Credits
Blueprint Society

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutColorado is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.