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Photo Finish: Riannon McGavin

by C California Style

Get to know YouTube poet The Geeky Blonde

Rhiannon McGavin is named after a mythological Celtic goddess, not a Fleetwood Mac song. “People always ask,” laughs the 20-year-old former Youth Poet Laureate of Los Angeles. Having studied Shakespeare since age 7, McGavin can wax poetic on any topic. “When I was little, I wanted to be a perfumer,” she says. “I would go around in the backyard with a bucket of water, putting weird leaves in, and then I would take my mom’s Dior perfume and replace it with my leaf water.”

She now equates her former interest to her current passion by explaining that poetry, like perfume, “has an immediate effect and it’s something that unfolds on your skin over a longer period of time.” And while the UCLA English major may have published her first poetry book, Branches (Penmanship Books, $15), in 2017, she still doesn’t have her driver’s license. “I have a very intimate relationship with the Los Angeles Metro system,” jokes the Hollywood-bred writer, who has delivered spoken-word performances everywhere from West Hollywood’s Troubadour to New York City’s Lincoln Center.

The daughter of a documentary filmmaker, McGavin goes by The Geeky Blonde on YouTube and often collaborates with her best friend, Ariela Barer, who stars in Marvel’s Runaways on Hulu. As for what the future holds, the self-proclaimed “superstitious” scribe declines to share, so that she doesn’t jinx it. “If there is a book next year, that would be amazing, but it’s not a given,” she says. “I’m happy not knowing everything.”

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This article originally appeared in the Summer 2018 issue of C Magazine.