I wasn’t going to celebrate this, but then I usually try to avoid such things, like celebrating my own birthday, and publishing your own book is an achievement, so my poetry chapbook Here comes the Sun is one today! I spent a large part of June in 2017 working on this chapbook, before uploading the file onto Createspace. The poems were written whilst I was travelling in 2016. I left home, my boyfriend and I were travelling, living in hotels, and having a good time. The book has gotten some great reviews from readers. I value reviews so much. The feedback helps me to be a better writer, and on days I am not motivated can really raise spirit.
I also want to thank Jennifer Patino for her review of my other book La La Love.
La La Love hands out small poetic doses with each turn of the page. Katie Lewington’s voice and style are enough to cause an addiction. This collection is personal, but doesn’t give away all of the poet’s secrets. Instead the reader is presented with beautiful skimmings of surfaces until the closing lines of each poem, where Lewington successfully brings our minds to a much deeper climax. Excellent poetry.
I am now going to talk about my writing routine.
I have usually written my poems, ad hoc in most cases, and when I see a theme emerging I work on compiling those poems. With Here comes the Sun that theme was travel. I had the poems all handwritten, and I started to edit the the poems, and to try to put them in an order that made them sit comfortably into the context of the book. I didn’t want to put, for example, two poems about the beach together that would have not moved the reader in the same way if they had read them two, three poems apart.
There was one poem, which I liked, that I cut from Here comes the Sun. I didn’t feel it had enough substance to it. These decisions have to be done, but they are not easy. Editing is a difficult part of the process. As I get older I see the value in doing so, and orchestrating the book in a way it will get the right emotional responses from its reader.
I then get the completed book read by my boyfriend. He’s so smart, and knows about everything, so I feel my poetry is in safe hands. I wait for a yay or nay (his feedback is literally that succinct) With his support I feel more confident about my new book.
I think any writer feels a bit fragile after writing their book. Best to have a short nap afterwards.
That is pretty much it, compiling, editing, and feedback. Of course, the time between steps can be weeks, months, or years. I tend to procrasinate around the editing part. That’s where a lot of the living happens and I have to make the time inbetween that to work on my writing: fixing errors, changing titles, making sense of my scribbles etc.
It can be lonely as well. For all of social medias faults it has made it easier for writers to confab with each other about their craft, which I think is pretty awesome.