Last weekend i turned in final edits, on my end—no more adding/removing poems or switching things around. Which makes me feel both relieved and a little nervous.
In fact, sending out my advanced reader copies to those poets who’ve agreed to write blurbs for the book made my stomach turn to knots; I admire these poets very much, and I was touched that the first three I asked wrote back so quickly to say yes! I just hope that they like my book—even if they half-like some of my book, that is enough.
As many times as I’ve looked through my book, I kept coming to the same two poems as the opening poems (though I’ve switched their order at least a dozen times). I changed the ending poem a few times, but I feel like the concluding poem is more complex than the one I ended with previously.
I ended up taking out three or four poems written in persona surrounding a funeral home director’s family—I don’t feel that they were, in themselves, callous, but juxtaposed to some poems about miscarriage, they didn’t work for me.
I had, at one point, removed the sections from my book, but settled on having three sections and focusing the middle section on my Leah persona poems. Giving her a section to herself created some interesting perspective on a few poems that I’d not originally written to go with her story. I’d had her poems here and there in the book, but in the end she demanded more of a leading role.
Revising titles was another task I wanted to tackle when going through the book one last time. I’m not great with titles, so this took some time. I ended up going with a suggestion a reader gave me a year ago—changing many of the titles so they include “keep” in them, to go along with the title of the book “keeping me still”. I think doing that made the book more cohesive, overall.
Keeping Me Still is scheduled to come out in late March, and I’ll give you more updates as they come up! the next update will be the cover reveal on the Winter Goose website, sometime in the next couple weeks.