The launch

I know with a new book out I should be flogging it (to flog: 1. To beat severely with a whip or rod. 2. Informal To publicize aggressively: flogging a new book.) – but I’m just a mild-mannered poet, so it has taken me a week to make a post. The book launch was lots of fun. Novelist Ann Leary introduced me and said that when she had first heard Moses Pendleton describe me, she thought I must be his imaginary friend. My reading showed, however, that he is mine. I should mention that I don’t actually read, I recite from memory, and I try not to recite so much as speak as if I were just casually telling stories in rhyme. Now that I’ve seen I can do it, I’m going to take it a little further, Mark Twain style, with more pauses and other little performance effects. (Mark Twain would arrive at the lectern with speech in hand, a thought would apparently strike him, he would tuck his papers under his arm and ramble on for an hour as one thing led to the next – crafty fellow, he had memorized his monologue in advance, right down to the stammerings and confusions). The point is, I got to see many copies of the book, with that stunning cover photo by Moses, piled on a table. Cynics will be thinking, “You’ll see them again when your book is remaindered – no one buys poetry.” Well, sales were brisk – albeit to a hometown crowd. And there are pictures! Extraordinary pictures, in fact…photo-4

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