I have always been interested in being published. This interest has permeated every career that I pursued and possessed. Because of the variety of professional positions I’ve held, my writing has taken different forms. I was first published in the late 1980s as part of a team of baccalaureate prepared nurses working at the University of Rochester’s Strong Memorial Hospital NICU. We published a neonatal drug handbook for other nurses working in the same setting. Until this moment, I forgot I had a prior publication.
Since that time, I’ve changed careers and went from being a master’s prepared (1990), nationally certified pediatric nurse practitioner to being a master’s prepared (2018) environmental educator. I started several medically related articles hoping for publication, but never finished them. One featured an adolescent female in whom I helped to diagnose an ovarian tumor. It was a scary and unusual occurrence to write about. However, I never finished the article. I had learned that it was difficult to work full time in demanding career such as being an extended provider in health care (CPNP), and still fulfill dreams of publication.
When I was between professions, I spent time providing enrichment experiences for school aged children. This provided a great deal of opportunity to develop and write curriculum and well as help my students become published in compilation at the ripe age of nine years! Although helping my students to write haiku accepted for publication made me extremely proud, it did not satisfy my need to write and publish. I needed to create the same opportunity for myself that I had pursued for them.
This year I started to pursue opportunities to become published. I went beyond my comfort zone and began to submit my poetry to contests and publications seeking submissions. Although my writing was not met with a great deal of criticism, it also was not accepted by those to whom I submitted my work. Thus, I started to look for opportunities to both grow my knowledge of indie publishing and networking with those who were author/publishers.
Last year, I took a self publishing course offered by a local author. It was a webinar and well done. This year, I decided to pursue an opportunity to learn from Janet Wong and Sylvia Vardell of Pomelo Books. As both authors and publishers, they offered a course called Anthology 101. I participated in that course and then took advantage of another opportunity called Anthologies 201. Through this course work, I had the opportunity to be published.
But, it was more than just being published. For me, it was a chance to be “walked through the process” of publication. It was also a chance to be edited by professionals. I jumped at the chance. The result? Publication in the brand new book THINGS WE DO by Pomelo Books.
My poem called INVENT, an ekphrastic poem, written about a picture of a young girl inventing a robot, was accepted by Janet an Sylvia! They made suggestions for revisions, to which I listened to carefully. One important point was that when you revise, do not try to make it better, make it different! And, for me, that turned out to be the advice that changed my opportunity to be published into a reality. For I took two invent poems I had written for their review, and edited them by saving the good parts and combining those saved portions into one poem that speaks to what I saw happening in the photo used for the word INVENT.
By taking advantage of an opportunity to learn from two very gracious and experienced authors and publishers, Janet Wong and Sylvia Vardell, I met a goal I had set for myself – being a published author! I cannot thank them enough! You can check out more of Pomelo Book’s publications at https://pomelobooks.com/new-books-1 and Pomelo Books. They provide poetry across the curriculum for teachers, librarians, and parents to share with students.
The book THINGS WE DO is available from the following:
A small press at QEP Books: https://www.qepbooks.com/Products/Things-We-Do-Coming-10212021__Pom7305.aspx. There is discounted shipping from this supplier for more than 3-4 books. (I hope those of you who have early childhood classrooms and staff our district libraries will take advantage of this).
In addition, all of the proceeds for THINGS WE DO go to a charity that supports children in crisis. No one profits from the book. The generosity of this project is something that held great appeal for me. IBBY Children in Crisis Fund: https://www.ibby.org/awards-activities/activities/ibby-children-in-crisis-fund.
THINGS WE DO has also been awarded the designation of Hot off the Press Books by the Children’s Book Council. Congratulations to Janet and Sylvia and all of the included authors!
Finally, since it is Poetry Friday, Sylvia Vardell of Pomelo Books has graciously supplied a graphic with links to some of the other authors featured in THINGS WE DO. Please check them out! Thank you, Sylvia and Janet, for your graphic contributions highlighting our poetry in THINGS WE DO.
I cannot say enough about this learning opportunity and experience! I hope to continue to find publishing opportunities in the near future or maybe, just maybe, create some of my own!
Congratulations to all involved in the ekphrastic poetry anthology THINGS WE DO! We did it!
Today is Poetry Friday. Our host this week is Jama at Jama’s Alphabet Soup. Thank you for hosting this week! Jama always offers some yummy photos as well as words, so be sure to stop by!