I’m posting this because a couple of friends have asked me how Terra Incognita came to be.
It was the last day of August: my daughter spent the day at a friend’s birthday party and I spent the day working on my chapbook submission for dancing girl press’ chapbook series.
It was the last day to submit, I had until 11:59 p.m.
The post-apocalyptic, more-or-less love poems I was working on were inspired partly by Francesca Lia Block’s Love In The Time Of Global Warming (which I had just finished reading), and partly by Jorge Luis Borge’s The Book Of Imaginary Beings (which I had checked-out from the Leavenworth Public Library just a week before, and which I had been carrying around and leafing through all week), and a lot by my long-standing love of the arresting visual aesthetic of abandoned spaces (buildings, factories, schools, hospitals, farmhouses)–once thriving with human activity and now crumbling and being reclaimed by the earth.
All day I worked, editing poems and writing ones still missing from the collection, stopping occasionally–for a break, or whenever I was blocked– to read Max Barry’s Syrup, a book so funny and intense, I didn’t want to put it down.
C would remind me of what I was supposed to be doing whenever he heard me yelling at the book, “DAMMIT, Sneaky Pete! Why are you so sneaky?”
…Or when it was down to the wire and I had only an hour left to finish and was pretty much catatonic with anxiety and all I could think was, “I need a snack! WHY DON’T WE HAVE ANY SNAXXX?!”…
C would say, “Um, because you already ate all the snacks, and shouldn’t you be writing?”
And then I sent it out into the ether and waited.
and then I received the email I’d been waiting for my whole life, “We would love to publish…”
And in the intervening months, dancing girl press founder and editor, Kristy Bowen, worked her magic until Terra Incognita was ready to be sent out into the vast great unknown.
Terra Incognita is available here.
dancing girl press’ chapbook series reading period is now open: http://www.dancinggirlpress.com/index2.html