I had a feeling today. It was with me all day, and when I got home and saw the large envelope that said “Do Not Bend” on it, I suspected today was the day.
My proof book had arrived. This has been a day I’ve waited for since December.
It’s silly, I suppose, but Hanami is my first book and it’s been with me for a long time. The original version of this book was my thesis, but to say that Hanami and Houses are the same is like saying a zebra and a horse are the same thing. In truth, Hanami does contain some of the original poems in Houses. In fact, they open with the exact same first page.
But over the years, I’ve taken out a lot of those older poems and replaced them with new ones. The replaced those new ones with either newer ones or back with older ones. I’ve shifted poems around and around enough that as I read the first two rounds of proofs, I was surprised to find a poem somewhere I didn’t expect. All this is to say, this book has been with me a really long time. It’s had four names. It was sent to more than a hundred places. It was rejected a lot. I was shocked when Aldrich took it.
In any case, the book will probably be released pretty soon. I’ll blog more about the poems in it. Some are Asian American poems, others about Japan, some about Hawaii. More to come.