Friday, May 1, 2015

So this just happened

I just received my proof copy for my latest book, Lake of Fire: Landscape Meditations from the Great Basin Deserts of Nevada.  If that title doesn't draw record crowds, I don't know what will.  This is going to be my fourth full length collection of poetry, and I thought I would try to do a little more this time around to actually, you know . . . um, sell this book.  You know I am no good at the hard sell, but I thought I would give it the old college try.  That's what this blog post is about, so if you want to watch a poet flail his arms and make a fool of himself, generally speaking, then stick around.  I am certain you will see something to laugh at, and that is half the battle.  What follows is my feeble attempt at trying to convince people to buy my book, and it is important for me to let you know I will do my level best to make sure no animals will be harmed during the production of this blog post.  Bruised egos are another matter altogether.

I think the best way to get this show on the road, is to give you a few reasons why you should want to buy my book.  Interspersed with those reasons, I will throw out some random poetry facts---some specific to me and some specific to the book.

Reason Number 1 to buy my book:  Aside from five copies I owe to various people (to include the generous poets who wrote blurbs for the book) I will not be giving any copies away.  That's right.  The usual for Justin is no longer the usual.  When it came to my chapbooks, and certainly my third book, Sailing This Nameless Ship, I was in the habit of giving copies of my book to anyone who asked.  Well, not any longer.  for better or worse, this book is for sale, and if you want your fix, you are going to have to pay. End of story.  don't like that business model?  Well, complain to the management and wait patiently for a response.  If you leave your phone number, I will be sure to ignore it just as I ignore your complaint.

Reason Number 2 to buy my book: Aside from three poems, none of the poetry in the entire collection has been published in any journal or chapbook.  By my count (and sets of haiku are counted as one) that's 42 entirely new and virtually unseen poems for you to read.  You see, part of my goal with this book was to publish a volume of poetry without the anxiety of basing my decisions on whether a poem had been published in a reputable journal.  I intentionally assembled the collection I wanted and revised work I had not ever submitted or work which had never been accepted for publication.  The three poems which were published?  They fit my needs, and that's why they are in the book.  This wasn't an attempt to thumb my nose at the poetry community or its standards.  It was about my own peace of mind as I came to terms with some of my own emotional and psychological needs and realities.

Reason Number 3 to buy my book:  Not to put too fine a point on it, but I think the title goes a long way to sell the book.  I mean, who doesn't a ripping good yarn?  Everybody loves a great tale, and nothing will keep you on the edges of your seat quite like landscape meditations.  When I was starting to look around for my next project, I asked myself what could top my foray into 19th Century Mormon Agrarian poetry, and landscape meditations just crashed into my consciousness like a freight train.  Haiku, haibun,  and aubades, oh my!  And look at that cover!  I designed the color scheme myself.  The book is divided by the four seasons, and I think you will be pleasantly surprised at the spin I put on them.  Well, that might be pushing it a bit, but this book really does have the potential to be one of the more unique books you will read this year, if for no reason there aren't too many people writing and publishing landscape meditation these days.

There you have the first three reasons you should buy my book as soon as it becomes available. I will be back with more, even though, if you have been paying attention, are entirely superfluous.