WEEKEND REPORT: It was a poetry-filled weekend in Atlanta, with the Poetry Atlanta Presents... reading (see the previous post), doing a final edit on After the Poison, filming for the Poetry Atlanta DVD and attending a brilliant reading by Laure-Anne Bosselaar at Java Monkey Speaks last night.
On Saturday, I got a small box marked fragile in the mail. It's an antique poison bottle I found on eBay (you really can find anything there!) that will become part of the photo shoot for the After the Poison cover and campaign. The bottle is amber colored glass and has the word "poison" in raised letters on both sides. It's exactly what I had in mind. BFFs Brent and Kathy are coming up this weekend to shoot and style. I even got a haircut for the occasion. Brent always makes me look svelte and "literary," so he's permanently in my speed dial. The bottle arrived at my door while I was editing the manuscript, which was a great sign. I also sent the manuscript out for a couple more blurbs. Both Jackie Sheeler and Kate Evans have read the chapbook and sent their blurbs. I am thrilled they liked it so much and honored by the words in their blurbs.
The Poetry Atlanta DVD -- which will be released this fall -- wrapped principle photography on Sunday afternoon. Once again, Tim O'Donnell set up at Wordsmiths Books in Decatur and taped interview segments with Atlanta Review editor Dan Veach, Karen G., Tavares Stephens and Kodac Harrison. Editing will begin soon. We're very excited about this project and the poets who will be featured reading their work and talking about verse and the scene in Atlanta.
Last night, I met up with Kodac Harrison, Travis Denton, Katie Chaple and Laure-Anne for dinner at the Brickstore pub in Decatur. Laure-Anne and I shared a cosmopolitan and she told us that her latest collection, A New Hunger, had just won the 2008 Notable Book Award from the American Library Association. Congrats, Laure-Anne! After dinner, we walked over to Java Monkey and it was really an amazing evening of poetry. So many good poets reading during the open mic and, of course, L-A did an amazing job, even when the PA system died. She had the audience in the palm of her hand; they were hanging on her every word. What an absolute treat. We read together next week at the Limp Wrist magazine launch party. If you're in town on Feb. 28, you really must come to hear her.
The actual singing competition portion of American Idol gets under way tomorrow night. There's been plenty of scandal about this year's crop of contestants. Most of them are failed musicians who have had previous record deals (Carly Smithson, who had a major label deal with MCA Records) and lots of TV exposure (David Archuleta, who won the kids version of Star Search). I'll have a recap of this tomorrow night along with my review of the guys' performances.