So this whole self-publishing thing is a bit of a grind. To date I’ve made back about 1/3 of what I spent in publishing the book, which isn’t terrible for a first-time endeavor, and it’s not like it cost me very much cash to begin with. Last night I went to the All Arts Market in the arts district here in town, set up a table and sat there for four hours. To sell one book. That was a little brutal. But I knew when I printed 100 copies that most of them were going to go to friends and family for Christmas (so if you’re related to me and reading this, at least have the grace to feign surprise). It’s not like anybody makes any real money writng and publishing poetry, but it should at least be able to be a break-even proposition. I plan to approach local colleges about doing appearances and readings there, so that’s another avenue to sell a few copies.
It’s not really about the money, it’s more about changing the way people view poetry. One of the greatest compliments I got this past weekend was from DrChako, who told me that he’d never really cared for poetry, but that my stuff made a connection with him. That’s what it’s about for me, making connections and telling good stories. Maybe I do it with fewer words and a different format than most writers, but it’s the same thing – storytelling. So I want to push the boundaries of what poetry is supposed to be, because I don’t think very many people have it right. I dunno, maybe I’m way off base and everybody is writing accessible, clear-minded stuff nowadays, but I don’t think so. I think there’s a lot of purposefully obscure drivel out there that drives people away from the form, and somebody needs to show people that there can be other accessible poetry that isn’t slam poetry. It’s not to take away from the slam poets, but it’s not what I do, and it’s not the only game out there.
So that’s all I want to do – change an entire societal view on poetry and poets. We’re not ALL effete beret-wearing omnisexuals who smoke cloves and drink lattes. At least not every day:).
And I’m trying to make a concerted effort to write a little here every day. That will likely blow up in a matter of days, but for now, we’ll keep it rolling.