78º ~ started the day with storms/rain/clouds and now we have bright sun and huge humidity
A note, Dear Reader: I am not writing this post because I want or need to be patted on the back and consoled. I write this post because my goal in keeping this blog was to be real about what it means to be a poet these days.
These days, being a poet, for me, has been about trying to get the second book published. For those who are frequent readers, you'll know that I spent about two years getting the book together, with some of the poems written years before that. I've been quite active about publishing individual poem in reputable national journals, and nearly all of the poems have been accepted at that level. I've created an active presence in the world of poetry and try to give back as much as I can. This past fall, I did a complete overhaul of the book based on some great criticism from someone who knows the field intimately. I have the manuscript out at book contests and open reading periods alike. In other words, I've been following all of the advice I've ever been given about how to do this work.
Today, I got another rejection for the book. For some reason, this one has knocked the wind out of me. Of course I went through all of this with Blood Almanac. Of course I know that it's a subjective business with tough competition. And still I can't help wondering "What's wrong with me?" I think about all of the examples of people who publish book 1 and book 2 back to back with almost no time in between, and I can't come up with one name of someone with ten or more years in between books, although I know they are out there. I wonder what I am doing wrong and the perfectionist in me gets a bit out of control kicking herself.
Sigh. Deep Breath. Chocolate.
Even writing this post has helped me regain a bit of my balance, but hope has limped off into the corner for now. I'll cox it out again, I'm sure, but I'm going to let it alone for a bit.