Well, it’s been a weird few days.
Firstly, I put Fleeting Ink on offer (it’s still free! Until Tuesday, I think, so if you haven’t nabbed it, now’s the time), and had a bunch of downloads. I mean, I don’t think it’s quite edged into double figures yet, but it’s the most interest anyone’s shown in my poetry in a couple of years, so that was exciting. Except it reminded me that I haven’t looked at these poems in… quite a while. And I suddenly found myself paranoid that they were terrible.
I haven’t quite had the courage to read through the ebook yet to see whether I still like my own writing yet. Maybe soon.
EDIT: Just checked, and it looks like the free promo ends at the end of today (Monday 28th), not Tuesday as I originally thought. So, if you are thinking about it, don’t delay!
Renewed attention in my poetry meant I decided to check the Goodreads pages for the various collections, which I hadn’t done in quite a while. I noticed that the overall rating had gone drastically down and wondered why, so decided to check — only to find that the same person had 1-starred all of my collections, plus St Mallory’s Forever (a novel I cowrote when I was sixteen, for those who don’t know).
The person in question? A YA author whose book I’d critically reviewed — though not, I might add, at all rudely, and with very valid reasons. But apparently they couldn’t handle being given a 2-star review, because they decided to hate-rate everything I’ve ever been involved in writing.
So that kind of sucked. It’s not like the Goodreads ratings are particularly important to me, and I’m not trying to make a living from poetry (which is probably just as well, it would never happen). But I was shocked that a grown adult could be that petty and unprofessional.
Especially because I knew they couldn’t have read the books, since I didn’t sell any copies at that time. But, yunno. Apparently that doesn’t stop anyone these days.
However, after posting about this on Facebook, a few of my friends said they’d pick up the collection so they could give me an honest review, so that was something.
I also went through my computer and discovered that I have about 30 poems to put towards a fourth collection, despite having written a grand total of one (1) poem this year. I’ve provisionally titled it Here There Are Monsters, but I have no idea when it’ll be finished, partly because I don’t know if I’ll be able to write any more poems in the near future with which to finish it, and partly because I still haven’t chosen a professional name. And yeah, I could publish another collection under Miriam Joy, and maybe I will, but it seems like it would make more sense to wait until I’ve picked a name.
So. That’s going to be a thing, at some point in the future. My poetry collection days are not done, despite the three year gap since I last finished one.
On Friday evening, I went away with my sister to my grandparents’ old house, which was a very weird experience because I haven’t been there in years. I mean, the last time I stayed overnight there was 2009, when both of my grandparents were still alive. I knew it was going to be weird — I actually got super anxious about it beforehand, because I’d built up a mental block against going back there, but I knew I needed to go there to get over it. And I did, and it wasn’t bad, but it was definitely somewhat odd.
While I was there I checked the Amazon page for Fleeting Ink, and discovered that someone had left the nicest, most encouraging review ever. Like, it honestly made me tear up. It was not only so complimentary, but also they used the right pronouns the entire way through, and just generally made me super emotional. I was tearing up while reading it.
The best part? I still have no idea who wrote it. I didn’t recognise their username on Amazon or Goodreads, so it probably wasn’t someone I know particularly well. But they said in the review that they followed my blog, so if it’s you, please let me know so I can give you virtual hugs for totally making up for all the hate-rates and just generally giving me Feelings.
Yesterday morning, meanwhile, I finished writing the third draft of the first Death and Fairies book. The draft was about 10,000 words shorter than the previous one, which means I was less wordy because I didn’t cut any full scenes at any point. It took me about two weeks, with a few days off, to complete, which seemed relatively fast — but then again, I had a few chapters already done when I started.
And now I’m home again. With Wifi (which is good, because my phone decided to drain all my data yesterday while I was away and left me bereft). And I’ve finished the book I was working on, so I have no excuse not to work on my Welsh exercises (although I’m currently procrastinating by watching Shadowhunters).
So yeah. A weird few days. Poetry has this kind of effect on my life. Any of you having an interesting bank holiday weekend?