Atticus is a renowned Instapoet, New York Times bestselling author and Linktree user. He’s also shrouded in an air of mystery – something not often associated with the transparency of sharing on a platform like Instagram.
Atticus, despite his audience of more than 1 million followers, chooses to keep his identity secret. Thankfully, he was open to chatting to us! We know he’s male, Canadian, lives in Los Angeles and is somewhere around his late 20s/early thirties, but that’s it.
As a Linktree user, we wanted to know more about his art – crafting words which have been tattooed onto his admirers (check out his story archive for evidence!), are wrapped around bottles of his wine and even feature in the song of some of the world’s biggest bands.
We asked him about his love of the short form and why he’s chosen a digital platform for it. He even shared why he writes his poetry wearing a mask…
Atticus might not reveal his full identity, but he does rock a steamy headshot.
Atticus, where and when do you write?
“I’ll write anywhere and anytime. I’ll sometimes disappear at parties and write in my phone. But I also have a little back house on my property that I enjoy writing in. I’ve filled it with everything that inspires me; old books, typewriters, my record player and records, art, and wine or whiskey depending on the night. Surrounding myself with all these things helps me get in the mindset to write.”
Why is Instagram your preferred medium?
“When I started, I typed all my poems on a typewriter. I took pictures and shared them online. My style has evolved since then, but I still like Instagram as a forum. I’ve always enjoyed writing short form, lots of epigraphs, aphorisms, turns of phrase so Instagram plays well to that.”
What do you get from your online community?
“The messages I receive are immensely inspiring, there are so many kind supportive people online, and some incredible young poets and writers. I love it when people share their work, art or tattoos with me, and, I’ve been able to connect with so many talented artists and collaborators. It’s a powerful, synergistic community.“
How has your work opened up opportunities offline for you?
“Yes, certainly. This year I launched my own wine brand called Lost Poet wine with @Winc which has been a dream of mine since the first time I went to a vineyard. I wrote the live show poetry for Kygo’s recent world tour. I’ve also collaborated with Coach, Maroon5, Spotify, Absolute, Zanerobe, to name a few.”
“We are having fun and doing the projects we love. Last year I released a necklace with Phyrra jewelry where 100% of the profits went to TWLOHA supporting mental health in youth. We raised $35,000 in a few months. That was huge fun.”
Is this still a side hustle?
“I’m lucky enough to have a lot of different things going on but Atticus is a big part of it. And, with its recent growth, and the books going bestseller, it has demanded more and more time. But I love it, and I’m excited about the future. I have a great team now. They are the real magic behind the brand.”
Does the feedback loop of publishing poetry in this way impact what you write?
“I try not to be influenced, but I’m sure it impacts me to some degree. Wearing a mask helps insulate me— it reminds me to be vulnerable and write what I feel and not what I think I should feel.”
“But social media is a double-edged sword. It’s powerful to have access to immediate feed back, but you always run the risk of writing for other people rather than yourself. You do your best. “
"Wearing a mask helps insulate me— it reminds me to be vulnerable and write what I feel and not what I think I should feel."
What inspires you?
“Life inspires me. People inspire me. Nature and muses both real and imaginary.”
Do you have any tips for us amateurs? Any tools or suggestions?
“I still consider myself an amateur. Im learning every day and trying to grow and get better. I took writing classes at Oxford recently which has helped me realize how little I know.”
“But, yes, if I was to give a tip I would say start writing and write often. Bukowski said the trick to writing is to “not try” and what I believe he meant was don’t set out to write the perfect piece, just write and enjoy writing and the magic will come.”
How do you see your poetry career evolving in the future?
“I’ve really enjoyed collaborating with music artists like Kygo and Maroon 5. Id love to explore the musical side of writing more. But, poetry itself bleeds into so many facets of life from copywriting, to advertising, to TV and story telling.”
“I want to continue collaborating and expand the scope of projects I’m working on, but ultimately I love writing poetry and hope to continue releasing books for the rest of my life.”
And we hope you do too, Atticus! (Support that by checking out his book The Truth About Magic ).
Chatting to Atticus is particularly potent this month as we’re looking at ways to be more mindful and to embrace creativity with digital detox. If you’re on board with us, why not try putting pen to paper as a way to refocus your attention from the screen.
Atticus uses his Linktree to link to all the places which help monetise his craft. That includes the exciting pre-release of his third book, his Lost Poet wine and his merch store. He is also collecting his audience emails with a sign-up form so that he’s able to grow meaningful engagement.
The simple color scheme is in line with the overall brand and reflects the way he presents his poetry. Go check it out!