"I’m grateful for being a young gay person" - new poetry collection

Worthing’s Thomas Latos, writing as Latos Xx, is in print with a collection of LGBT-perspective poetry written over just nine days.

Thomas Latos
Thomas Latos

The book, titled DREAD, has been self-published by Latos Xx and is available from Amazon.

Thomas, aged 16, said: “I wrote the entirety of the collection in nine days from December 23-31. I started off by writing a poem called Overflow in my journal when I was feeling emotional and I suddenly became really inspired and wrote Flowed Over pretty much immediately after.

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“And then every day afterwards I wrote at least one poem, just based on how I was feeling mentally and what thoughts kept popping up. The book focuses on mental health and break-ups from the perspective of a young LGBT person which I think is a unique perspective and I’m grateful for being a young gay person because I’ve experienced so much at such a young age which has made a very strong person, I think.

“It’s significant to me because it’s my very first collection and the idea that I can physically hold my work is very special to me.

“I actually get really inspired by the smallest things to be honest, like if I’m feeling really passionate or angry I’ll write something like Nicotine, talking about loving someone with an addiction and hating to crave the bad parts about them.

“Or when I’m bored I find I end up being really honest with how I’m feeling, like I wrote I Survived when I was just waiting for a musical to start and I was really bored!

“I’m aiming the book at anyone who is struggling with a break-up, or anyone who is struggling with mental health and feeling unworthy. I want everyone to know that they are worthy and that they are the star of their own movie. This collection reflects a journey within myself which I am still on to find self-love and a spiritual awakening. I really enjoyed the process of making Dread as it was pretty much over and done with in the space of two weeks which shows how inspired I was. I loved choosing what pictures I wanted to illustrate the themes in each poem.

“This is a stand-alone publication, alongside the spoken word album (available on all streaming platforms). I am planning to release more poetry collections in the future!

“I am a first-time author as I am usually known for being a musician and releasing readings of my poems on YouTube, so releasing a book of poems is new and exciting for me!

“I started song-writing properly when I was about 13 to document how I was feeling about various crushes and I ended up writing a lot of love songs. I wrote my first poem, called Midnight, when I was 14 for a school English activity and I ended up writing poetry more when I didn’t want to write a structured song and instead just let my feelings out.

“I ended up writing a lot of poetry about relationships, my mental health, addictions and obsessions. I think my poetry can be seen as quite dark for my age at times but I am thankful that I am honest and releasing very early in my life to show my evolution as an artist.

“I am currently talking to some schools about doing talks with students about Dread but I would love to be involved in any book event or talk. My instagram is @latosxx and my email is [email protected] if anyone wants me to be involved in any music or poetry events!”