Tuesday, July 07, 2020

sex & violence update

Yesterday began with the rather delightful news that sex & violence landed smack dab in the middle of Small Press Distribution's list of June poetry  bestsellers, which is not bad for a book released during a pandemic.  I don't remember this happening with any of my other full-lengths, so I am, of course over the moon.  Good news being enormously hard to find of late.  Also something that makes me feel like all these poems--all these books--they are finding the right readers. Well, are finding any readers at all, enormous solace when increasingly the poetry world feels like dropping a dime in a well and waiting for it to hit bottom.  Because things have been a little upside down, there is still some promo things I would like to do with the book in the next couple months, even if an official reading/ release is not possible in covid world--including a trailer and maybe some instagram videos. 

Books, or any published project really, have this strange life that goes on long after you'be finalized the proofs and dotted all the I's. As I've mentioned, this book was pulled together in my own grief of late 2017, and birthed in the middle of a national crises (actually two of them concurrently.)  It was hard to spend the day she arrived mourning not just the upticking tally of virus victims, but also the ongoing murder of countless POC by the police and the unrest brewing that first Monday in  June. I'd actually taken the day off of work, emotionally exhuasted. I'd fretted and napped most of the day, but then landed downstairs to find her on my doorstep--all pretty and shiny and I was in love. 

It's been a weird year, and I say that including the last full 365 days that bought my own struggles last fall that then turned into world-scale struggles by spring. But the book, and the fact that it is finding its way to readers sustains me now that at least my own mental health appears to be on the upswing.  It's tenuous, but the threads are there...

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