The Feb. 28 "Giving Voice" poetry concert, "a chapbook you could hear," was well attended (beyond my hopes) and begot lots of ideas: "You should do this every year," someone suggested. But, better, I suggested to some poets that they set poems in their chapbooks or books for choral reading, and that would be a great way to promote the poetry and therefore their books. All they need to do is to create an arrangement, set a date, get a venue and then some good people game to read. Gratifying.
Then on Thursday I get called by an MTV producer in New York. They are filming a "The Real World" episode about a young first-time self-published St. Louis author, Joel Ehrlichman, marketing his book with his ex-girlfriend's help. They'd heard I was an editor. Would I read his book, Gateway
, and give my opinion on camera? Legal tangles quashed filming at Wash U, so the author and crew ended up at my house Sunday with their lights and two cameras: one focused on the author and his girlfriend and one on me. As a first book it's a good effort, but it's the common drugs-and-degradation story that young people feel compelled to tell. All young writers write these things, but back in my day we didn't have the technology to publish them (thank you, God). Now and then a drug novel like Bret Easton Ellis' Less Than Zero
, or Jim Carroll's Basketball Diaries
makes a hit. But I think the drug novel market is saturated and his good effort is going to have a hard time. Told him I was eager to read his second book. The MTV Segment airs in April, I was told. Gratified again.
Wake up this morning with to email message from Cerise Press
(I'd heard of them) saying my book Meet Me
made their list of Editors' Favorites. Gratified again. But wait, there's more....an interview with me published on David Alan Lucas's
blog, "Coffee with David." It was an honor to be asked.
Have I now reached the "survivor stage," like, say W.S. Merwin or May Sarton, where I matter just because I'm still alive?