I've been all baited breath waiting to tell you: I've just finished the manuscript for my second book of poems!
I was lucky that Phases fared pretty well. Published by Cascade Books in 2017, it was reviewed pretty broadly (for a first book) and by some very generous and careful critics. That is quite enough to be thankful for and so I am nervous about this, my second outing. Will it do half as well? Will people, you know, get it?
The new book will be called The Elegy Beta and I sent it off to the publisher in December, at a different press this time. I floated a few poems to the poetry editor there who had some lovely things to say and has been a constant encouragement ever since. At this particular place, the book has to clear the general board—and not many of those people are poetry folk. So we have a bit of an uphill battle to convince them that The Elegy Beta will be worth their efforts. They meet in February, apparently, so I've spent the last few weeks putting on the finishing touches.
Maybe they'll take it! If they don't, I'll let you know and will come up with the next place that I think might make a good home for it.
These processes are super slow; I may not hear back for months while the various editorial teams discuss the book's merits and likelihood of success, but if you're the sort to offer prayers, or if you simply liked Phases and want to read more poems, would whisper vaguely West on behalf of this project? Anyone who would like to stay in touch and hear updates about the book's progress can leave an email address below and I'll send word.
Whatever happens, I'm thrilled. These are the best poems I've ever made and I can't wait—if not here, then somewhere else—to see them in print and share them all with you.
Thank you to those who have offered encouragement, or tipped me off to likely publishers, or just been great, inspiring, people whose kindness shocks me into response. It's a joy to walk these byways with you.