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Something Like Forgiveness (Behind the Scenes)

My new book, an epic poem coupled with collages by Hosho McCreesh, is in the works. The idea behind the project came when I received an invitation to submit work for a book that quickly morphed into a more collabrative project that diverges from my wonted style. My focus for my last three poetry collections hinged on settings and characters and I endeavored to reintroduce the characters from one collection into another. I enjoyed getting to know my characters and then being surprised by how they evolved. I thought I would continue to work with these characters, but then changed direction and decided to write more about myself and some experiences that I have been dealing with.

When I received the invitation to submit a book, I was in the middle of working on a series of poems about tragedy, mental illness and the impact of incarceration on family members. I was not ready to submit those pieces as a collection yet, so I decided to write a stream of consciousness piece that would afford me the opportunity to work through some of the writing ruts that I was encountering. Within a month or so, I completed the first draft of the book and shared it with my friend and fellow writer, Dan Crocker. He loved what I was doing and encouraged me not to overedit, which I am infamous for. I am excited about working with Jeanette Powers, from Stubborn Mule Press, on this project and will continue to post about our progress.

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