Facebook Challenge Answered
(Rules: Day 1 – the book you are currently reading; Day 2 – a book you loved as a child; Day 3 – a book abandoned half-read; Day 4 – a book that made a great impression on you; Day 5 – The book you return to over and over again. Nominate 3 friends each day)
Caught in an online hybrid
of tag and chain letter
you want me to tell you about my reading habits, but
I warn you, I rarely follow rules unless
the reasoning is sound.
How can I dole out my bookish experiences
piecemeal when books are more like air
to me, an indivisible atmosphere
that I breathe in and out.
Some smell of lilacs and slip
into my psyche like melting chocolate
while others gag me
with the scent of rotting flesh and yet
I read on, knowing that the kernel of the story
will nourish some necessary hunger.
As I child I loved children’s books that hold
no real charm for me now because the lenses
of childhood do not fit anymore.
I do not mourn their passing, it is the
natural way of life to move along.
Of abandoned books I will not speak.
They are the choking breath that engenders
coughing fits; best forgotten.
Some volumes drowned me with new ideas,
gave me fresh eyes with which to view my life.
They filled my lungs with the purest air, unscented
yet smelling of the world and everything in it.
These I revisit; these and the ones whose
words roll around my mind in familiar patterns,
un-pinching, comfortable and safe.
I will not tell you the names of these books
lest you accidentally read them with false expectations.
I will not exhort triumvirates of friends to spill
their literary leanings – they must offer them to you
willingly – with no guilt laden nudges.
If you want my advice about books,
this I will give you…
Read it all and decide for yourself.
ISBNs and humility (not a poem)
The book is finished. The last changes were made and uploaded. Now all I need is an ISBN. As soon as it comes, I’ll add it to the book and Ta-Freakin’-Da, my first book of poetry will be available.
Of course now comes the promotional phase! Pass me that horn will you? Time to toot it! It’s one of the hardest things for most creative people to do – self promotion. If you’ve been raised to have even the remotest shred of modesty and/or humility, self-promotion feels pushy. But I’m gonna do it anyway!
The fact is, looking for a ‘publishing company’ who will publish the first book of poems from a (sigh) unknown poet is a bit like the proverbial search for the needle in the haystack. Let’s just say I’m not in any great danger of signing a publishing deal anytime soon!
If you’re incredibly famous already you’ll have a publicist (and a publishing deal complete with advances), but us newbies gotta work for it! And that’s okay, if we have the gumption to write we should also have the gumption to learn the self-promotion ropes and publicize our wares.
To that end I’ve created a Facebook writing page (if I hit all the right keys, there should be a way to get there from here… what can I say – it’s a work in progress!) and I’m planning a local book launch and perhaps I’ll launch in a couple of cities in my immediate geographic sphere (of course if anyone’s interested in providing the plane fare I’ll put on a book launch pretty much anywhere!).
I’ll be carrying my books with me, talking to any media types I can track down, and I’m open to suggestions – all of you have been so helpful and supportive – if you know of anywhere else I can promote this book I’d be tickled pink to hear from you!
Soon, soon, the book will be ready soon…. 😉