My new poetry collection The Last Time I Saw Ipswich' came out this weekend on Alien Buddha Press. It's a good-looking little volume with flattering blurbs from Andrew Darlington and Bryn Fortey and a great cover by ABP helmsman Red Focks. And on the whole I'm really pleased with it.
This morning, though, reading through the book for the first time since it arrived, I noticed some annoying mistakes I'd made when I submitted the manuscript.
On page 10, I wrote 'tell' instead of 'telly'.
On page 14, I ended the poem with a comma instead of a full stop.
On page 17, I ended the poem 'as she bought our fish' instead of 'as she bought our fish for tea'. The first is sort of okay, but the rhythm is much better with the second.
What happened, I think, was that I was too focussed on correcting a glaring error I'd made in the final poem -- which was corrected -- and too concerned about getting the book out quickly, to pay proper attention to what I was doing. Or to heed most of the advice of Andrew Darlington, who'd pointed out the blunders in the manuscript. That's a lesson learned.
It's probably not a big deal, or as big a deal as I think it is, because 95% of the poems came out really well. But I wanted the book to be perfect. Instead I sat in the darkness this morning with a copy of it in my hands feeling that I'd let myself down just a little bit.