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The Power of Good Reviews

Today's Knoxville News Sentinel contains a delicious review of my new book of poems, Packing Light.  The reviewer is a novelist and fiction writer, Jeanne McDonald--and so the review is actually beautifully composed.   There's one little patch where the newspaper mixes up quotes from the poetry with Jeanne's remarks, but hey--if that's giving the devil its due, then I'm okay with that!    The online version of the review can be found:


This book has been highlighted thanks to many powerful women in Knoxville, including Lee Ann Bowman, the producer of Live at Five (at Four) at WBIR, who invited me to read poems on tv, and had the handsome announcer Russ Blivens say, "Here's our favorite poet!"  which put me at my ease right away.   A clip from the show can be found at http://wbir.com/life/programming/local/liveatfive/default.asp/   The show aired on January 30, and is called "Writers in the Library Present Poet."

The editor of the "Life" section of our newspaper is Susan Alexander, who invited the review, and saw to it that Jeanne was compensated for writing it.

The UT Library display of my work was put together by Martha Rudolph, whose job description does not include making showcases of faculty work!

It is good to know powerful women!  But I would be remiss not to mention Charles Primm, the webmaster at UT, who had my smiling face up there on the UT Today website for a week.  (In the interest of full disclosure, I should tell you that I offered to thank him with a cupcake from the reception-after-the-reading!)

My mother would have loved this!  Granted, she would have said, "Oh, local?" but still.  Who else cares about this kind of thing? Ma!  Are you getting this?    

What's the power of a local review, even a good one?   Let me tell you--it cheered me right up!  And I could feel the network of women writers and journalists (and Charles) supporting me and the other writers in our community.   Never underestimate networks of writers, composed of diverse genres and views.  They buoy us!  Can you say "Red Room"!