artistic trajectory

i've written two poems since i had june. and though the writing is slow, and i very slowly wrote the poems, i feel like i am back to writing, just at a different pace right now. anyway i'm in a type of writing limbo--this time between the book being accepted and the book being published. everything i write i still look at with an eye towards should this be in the book? part of me is very happy to still have that time before things solidify--things are much scarier solidified, in a state where people will actually read the poems in this book. this will-be-published but with a freedom to still add and remove poems is a not too bad place to be.

it is coming to an end though. and with it comes the fact that people are going to read my writing. probably not a lot of people...but some people. probably my boss. and past teachers. and even my parents. and my mawmaw! oh goodness. bryan asks me there's nothing embarrassing in there right? of course there is. of course there is! well i won't tell you what, you'll have to buy the book to find out.

so i've been thinking towards that bright after-book future. or dim after-book wasteland. which one is it? i guess that depends on the day. right now i am looking forward to it--like breathing fresh air. closing a door. putting those memories in the box which is a book jacket and looking toward something new.

one of my favorite things to do while breastfeeding june at 1am (2am, 3am, 4am, sometimes) is to plot. sometimes the plotting is along the lines of "should the sofa go against the other wall in the living room?" but last night i decided to plot my artistic trajectory for the next yearish. (i like "trajectory" since it denotes "hurdling object, launched by outside forces" which is what i've always most closely identified with in my artistic ambitions)


artistic trajectory fall 2013 - fall 2014:

the present - november: strive to write a poem per month, consider said poems for addition to the manuscript, work with editors on manuscript editing

december - february: continue poem-per-month, book editing, and begin exploring possible avenues for future writing inspiration (meaning, reading outside the poetry genre, considering topics, themes, characters for future books, making lists of said topics to explore). 

february - may: continue poem-per-month, exploring avenues, and begin promoting book via blog interviews, reviews, etc

may - august: begin writing poems in a few different avenues of exploration, promoting book, possibly looking into doing a fall reading


i wanted to outline a plan for myself that was doable and not too intimidating, but that also was not so easy that i wouldn't feel that i had just tread-water the coming year. what i am most excited to do--and what i feel that i don't have time to do and that it is not quite the right time to do yet--is to begin exploring avenues of inspiration. for me that will mean list making topics that interest me with an eye towards mining a stream of inspiration for my next book.

like many poets, my first book is a type of "best-of" (there are certain themes--the south, family, church--but really it is my best-up-until-now). with the introductory chapter of my writerly-life closed though, i am free to pursue whatever wild and sundry writing i'd like to pursue. maybe more persona, really plugging into a voice that is not my own, or writing around a historical event, or who knows. i'm excited to begin researching random things that interest me, to "read dreadful dumb books and glorious books, and let them wrestle in beautiful fights"


  1. Anonymous6:38 PM

    Plan sounds good! I know for me, even without the publication of my book, I'm nervous about the idea of starting a new project. I don't think my book will feel truly "done" until it's actually printed and in my hands! Maybe that's just the nature of the beast?

    1. yes! i feel that way too. it will be happy/sad to have it Finished