It started about a year ago. I was talking with (emailing, actually) L.L. Barkat, editor of Tweetspeak Poetry, about the column I write for the online publication, and she said, “I think we need a book.”
Oh, my goodness.
The contract was signed, mailed and received. Then came the work.
I know where I was when I wrote the first draft of the introduction – on a plane to San Antonio, for a kind of communications retreat at Laity Lodge. I know where I was when I wrote the rest of it – sitting right here at my computer. And I know where I was when my editor, Ann Kroeker, shouted with glee when I sent the text that I had found and verified the final footnote – I was sitting in the stacks on a footstool in the Webster Groves Public Library, about 10 minutes from my home in neighboring Kirkwood (my fourth library visit of the day trying to find the book).
So what is this book?
What is it about?
Poetry. And work. And how I learned that poetry is inherently a part of work.
Even in PowerPoint presentations. And job interviews. And layoffs. And crises.
What I didn’t know was how people might react. Once the manuscript was edited, off it went for possible recommendations. That was a scary moment.
Poet David Malone read it and said some really cool things. David Murray, editor of Vital Speeches of the Day, a friend from almost 25 years, said some unbelievable things. Scott Edward Anderson wrote an incredible foreword (Scott blogs at The Green Skeptic).
This was different from writing my two novels. The novels never actually seemed like work, although they represent years of effort.
Poetry at Work was work. Rather intense at times. Really intense.
The result – well, you’ll have to read it (I hope).
It comes together as a whole piece – a whole piece of a life.
The Poetry at Work page at Tweetspeak Poetry