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Selling Secrets

sellingsecretsMood: Well Done
Drinking: The Tea with the Ice

The fearless Miss Kathy and I hit the pavement today to hawk our wares. All in all, I’d say the hawking went quite well.

Here are a few bookstores that now stock The Secrets of Falling on their shelves:

In San Francisco…
City Lights (the one & only)
on Columbus in North Beach
Bird & Beckett Books and Records
on Diamond St. in Glen Park
Phoenix Books
on 24th Street in Noe Valley
Dog Eared Books
on Valencia in the Mission
Green Apple Books
on Clement in the Richmond

In Santa Cruz…
Logos Book and Records on Pacific Ave.

In Chicago…
Quimby’s in Wicker Park

In Alabama…
Red Jasper Spa/Salon in Decatur

In Belfast…
(the one in Northern Ireland)
No Alibis on Botanic Ave.
•Bookfinders on University Road

More bookstores will be added to the list soon, and of course, you can always get Secrets online.

But we love our local, independent bookstores (and salons!) and we hope you’ll show them a lot of love, too.

If you stop by one of these stores and can’t find Secrets on the shelves, that means they sold out (yay!), so please request a copy so they’ll give us a call and order a few more.

-Lo, who just wants a small space on your shelf.

Gotta Get It

Mood: Kick-ass-ey
Drinking: Tea from the ‘Bucks

She’s got hers.

What are you waiting for?

That’s right, I’m talkin’ to you. I know you’ve been thinking about ordering up your very own copy of The Secrets of Falling but you were waiting for summer or sundown or Christmas in July.

And to you, I say, “What better time than now?”

All you’ve gotta do is run right over to the ordering page and click on the button and bing! bang! zoom! Your book will be waiting, all shiny and smelling of fresh ink, in your mailbox. Pages and pages of yet-unread words… sounds like a magical afternoon to me. But then, I’m biased toward words to begin with.

If you’re one of those folks who’s a bit scared of modern technology and internet shopping and hackers and slackers and such, well, just pop on over to the Says You page and tell me how you’d rather pay for your book…check in the mail, money order in the envelope, quarters in a sock, fair trade for fellow artists, whatever. I’m negotiable.

Well, to a point.

Anyway, the point is: Go Get Yours!

-Lo, who may even throw in a fun little prize, old-school Cracker Jack-style.

Enjoy the Silence

dream2Mood: Checked Out
Drinking: Always Tea

Now that it’s over, it feels like a dream.

All those weeks, those months of working so hard. Late nights. Early mornings. Endless lists of things to do. And then just like that, finished.

Not that there’s nothing left to do. There are books to place in stores, poetry readings with my name on the list, websites to reconfigure, there are plenty of things to do. But nothing like the lists I was juggling just two weeks ago.

Because for now, for now I am on vacation. I am checked out. I am not answering the phone. I am refusing to check email regularly. Starting tomorrow, if you order a book, it will take a couple of weeks to get there. Starting tomorrow, if you leave me a voicemail, it might be awhile before I call you back. Starting tomorrow, I’ll be off with my passport in my pocket. Starting tomorrow, Boy and I are going to be blissed out.

It will last just long enough, and then I’ll be back. I’l be back and I’ll tell you all about the reading at Great Overland Books on June 17th and the bookstores in Santa Cruz and the publishing company in Vermont and the Australian DJ who is, right this moment, doing unspeakable things with vox and trax and other mysterious x’s. I’ll tell you all about it.

But for the next little while, I’ll be living the dream…

-Lo, who bought a new plaid umbrella especially for this occasion.

About Last Night


Mood: Done!
Drinking: Celebratory Iced Tea

Party? Check!

Thanks to everybody who came out to The Secrets of Falling Book Release Party last night… you made it a roaring success. Thanks for buying books and prints and for helping Kathy and I celebrate in so much style!

If you missed it, we missed you, and you missed out on the party of the year. BUT! You can still get the book online, in person, or in bookstores soon.

I can’t thank everyone who was there, because there were too many of you (which is in and of itself a wonderful thing!). It really meant a lot to both Kathy and I that you came.

I do have to give special mention and big hugs to the following kick-ass people:
Kimberley – the amazing girl who helped us set up all day and made sure the gallery was sparkling
Sarah – for moral support, from dawn to dusk, and for extremely talented twinkle-light wrapping-upping
Bridget – for expert assistance in picture hanging and gallery design and end-of-the night pancakes
Johanna – for making strawberries look even sweeter than they are and wielding a wickedly-awesome serge stitch
Jason – for smooth wine-pouring skilz and protective police action
Michelle – for video camera documentation, unending smiles, and late-night cleanup help
Chris – for Bruce back-up, gallery appreciation, and heavy box lifting
Dave – for scandalously sexy moves on the dance floor
Lani – for being the best and hottest cash box lady there ever was
Melissa – for a smooth and suave print-selling operation
Carly – for coming and smiling and wearing a cute-ass skirt
Patti – for traveling all the way from Chicago and bringing her sharpie
Jocelyn – for the amazingly adorable party favors, and for wearing that hot Madonna outfit
and most of all,
Bruce – for being the best man, always and all the time. for being my back-up. for being so tech-savvy. for running the lights and the sound and the cinepoems and the show.
Kathy – because NONE of this would have happened without her.

-Lo, who will be sleeping for a few days now.

Tomorrow, Tomorrow

girls_forblogMood: Tired
Drinking: Tea

The time has come to party.

Tomorrow (Thursday), is the big shebang for The Secrets of Falling… Wine, women, song, possibly an interpretive dance from our friend Melissa. (But only if we spin some “Billy Jean”.)

Seriously, folks, it’s a big deal.

The fabulous miss Kathy Azada and I have been working on our book for over a year, and it feels like we’ve been planning our party for about that long, too, but that would be crazy.

We’re exhausted. We’re exuberant. We’re tired. We’re terribly excited. We’re both little bundles of sleep-deprived joy. (Perhaps that’s why I’m rambling so?)

Onward to the point! To all of my fellow San Franciscans and outlying Bay Areans, we’ll be so happy to see you tomorrow at Space 180 (from 6-9pm). We’ll be so thrilled to unveil our book. And show off all of Kathy’s artwork. And introduce you to all the other people who made this book happen.

For all our further-away internet friends, we promise that the book itself is almost as good as the party.

I’ve wanted to follow up Shedding the Angel Skin with a second book for years now, and Secrets is well worth the wait, even for me.

The theme of the book is the double-edged nature of hope. How impossible it is to live without hope, but how painful it is, how slippery it is, to hang on to hope. Secrets is built around a four-part poem titled “Spei Captiva Sum,” which means “I am a prisoner of hope.” (I have it tattooed on my right wrist as an ever-present reminder.)

Many of the 53 poems in Secrets were written for or about or around two of my very dear friends, who have both been on their own separate journeys to hell and back over the last three years.

I almost lost both of them, at different times. Watching them struggle and fall and climb back up and fall again — watching them, and struggling with them, and hoping against hope that they would get back up again — it inspired many of the words now printed on pages for others to read and maybe even take comfort in.

I think it matters, it makes a difference to know that in the midst of your bleakness, in the depths of your darkness, hope still flickers somewhere. Hope can be yours, once again.

I’ll be reading a few of my favorites from Secrets tomorrow, around 7 p.m. So be sure to stop by — new friends, old friends, internet friends and strangers. …It’s only a day away!

-Lo, who still knows all the words.

A Little Tease

Mood: Countdown
Drinking: Sure Enough

In the midst of the new book and the party and all the hullabaloo, my cinépoem partner Michelle and I have been a little naughty…

Here’s a teaser trailer for “Abattoir”, our newest (and most scandalous) cinépoem, which is in still in the editing stage. It should be finished and hit the internet just in time for July, or thereabouts.

These 42 seconds will have to tide you over until then…

By the way, the scary butcher? That would be my friend Eric from Michigan.

Check him out with that wicked cleaver in the teaser!

Scary, eh?

Just wait ’til you see the whole thing…

-Lo, who doesn’t really smoke, but is sometimes smoking.

Boxes o’ Books

Mood: High
Drinking: Teaboxesofbooks

It’s your turn. The boxes (and boxes and boxes) of books have arrived.

If you live in or around San Francisco and can wait until next week, come to The Secrets of Falling Book Release Party at Space 180 on Thursday, May 17 from 6 to 9 p.m. and get your books.

If you’re elsewhere, you can still get yours. Just go to The Books page to place your online order.

The Secrets of Falling will also be available in a few bookstores soon. I’ll let you know where and when.

I can’t begin to adequately express how excited we are. Secrets is a really beautiful book — Kathy Azada’s design is jaw-dropping, and the photography by Patti Monaghen and Bruce Willems really brings each poem to life.

But don’t take my word for it. (I’m clearly biased, anyway.) See for yourself!

-Lo, who thinks that brown boxes are a sight for sore eyes.

Exclamation Point

Mood: Ebullient
Drinking: Effervescent

The book, it is here.

Well, yours isn’t yet…the big truck bearing the big skid of 14+ cartons of books won’t arrive until next week. But Kathy & I got our little box of advance samples yesterday.

We have scrutinized every single millimeter of every single page, and we’d like to report that The Secrets of Falling is perfect and beautiful in every single way.

If you’ve placed a pre-order, your book will be mailed out as soon as the big truck makes its delivery next week. If you haven’t placed an order yet, what are you waiting for??

If you live in San Francisco or thereabouts, you’re probably waiting for the book release party to buy your book. A wise decision. Then you can get your book AND purchase a lovely framed photographic print as well.

If you haven’t heard about the party yet, you can get all the party details here. (And yes, you’re invited.)

Now I have to go sniff my advance copy again. Fresh ink, it smells so good.

-Lo, who is the very picture of giddy at the moment.

The Wind Beneath

Mood: Delirious
Drinking: Black Tea

Miss Kathy Azada kicks some serious ass.

You need to know this, Internet, because yesterday I spent a good 19 hours with the woman (that’s her, looking quite fetching on the right) , and I can definitely vouch for her formidable abilities in the ass-kicking arena.

April 2 was the deadline, you see. The drop-dead date. The line in the sand. The end of the road. The long goodbye. Whatever you want, that’s what it was. We had to send our book to the printer.

But these things never go quite the way you imagine they would, so that’s why Miss K and I were up in the tiniest wee small hours of this Tuesday morning, clicking and cutting and wavering between zombie-like grunting episodes and drunk-with-the-tiredness giggle fits. Come hell or sunrise, we were going to FINISH THE BOOK!

And we did. The Secrets of Falling is done. Well, almost done. She is making her way to Chicago right now to get plucked and printed and gathered and glued. My friend Warren at Imagine Print will take good care of her. And in a few weeks, a very few weeks, she’ll be ready to meet the world.

So let’s all raise a glass of whatever you’ve got to Kathy Azada, the woman who rocks the hardest.

Thank you, Kathy. You’re the best. No, shut up. You are.

Thank yous must also go out to Boy, who was the kindest, coolest, most supportiv-est partner ever, keeping Kathy and I hydrated and fed all day long, even going so far as to make us perfect little ginger cakes with warm caramel frosting. I mean, come on. That’s just insanely sweet. And then there was the whole thing with the exacto blade at 2 a.m., as he sat there cutting all the tiny pages for our miniature mock-ups. I’m the luckiest girl…

Big thanks, also, to LeeLoo, who stayed up with us and farted a lot to help keep us awake; to Roy, who helped out with some InDesign advice; and to Lani, who let me keep Kathy out ’til all hours. I shall bake you all magical cookies!

-Lo, who finds 3 a.m. to be very bewitching when she doesn’t sleep through it.


Mood: Whatever
Drinking: Whenevergalleria

Vanity, vanity, I’ve got new galleries.

Earlier this year you might have noticed a few web site renovations…some shiny new flash (and poetry) on the home page, new photos, new book pages (to accomodate the upcoming Secrets), a few new poems hiding out here and there, and of course, a photo slot here in She Says, which I’ve had lots of fun with.

We kept a few other changes up our virtual sleeves because they weren’t quite ready yet, but we’re putting ’em all on the table now. The Galleries are full of fun new bits. There’s a whole new section for Bruce Willems’ photography, lots of new photos from Patti Monaghen’s 2006 shoot here in California, and my favorite — a cinepoem photo gallery!

Somebody usually has a camera on hand at the cinepoem shoots, and now you can see all the behind-the-scenes tomfoolery, as well as photos of my cinepoem team — Michelle, Misha, Kathy, Sarah, and all my other girls (and a few boys) who’ve pitched in along the way. (God knows there are enough photos of me around here. I’ve gotta give some space to some new faces!)

Speaking of narcissism, I have developed a habit (thanks alot, myspace!) for taking photos of myself in bathroom mirrors. The one above was taken in the bathroom at The Hotel Utah a few weeks ago. I find them highly amusing. Of course, to take this kind of self-portrait, you have to look very serious, or at least pretend that you’re taking this photo shoot seriously. No goofy mirror mugging. It’s all about the haughty downward pointed chin. You should try it! That’s what digital cameras are for — you don’t have to feel bad about wasting film. Just wasting time.

Enough of that nonsense…

I’m extremely happy to report that The Secrets of Falling is going to the printer NEXT WEEK. We are finishing up final files and it looks so beautiful. Kathy Azada is an amazing artist, and I can’t wait until you all get to see her work. Speaking of which, stay tuned for details about a book release party here in San Francisco in May, and (maybe, possibly, don’t get too excited yet) a book signing in Alabama later this year…

And the creative juices keep on flowing… We have two (2!) cinepoems scheduled to shoot in April, “Kiss & Fly” and “Abattoir”. Both will feature something new: boys. There will be guest starring spots from more than one of the men in my life, and I can’t wait to show ’em off to you!

So that’s it for now. But more is always on the way.

Oh, and P.S. — Happy Wedding, Sara & Israel! Wish I could be there, but J & J will give you hugs for me.

-Lo, who knows that the secret to being photogenic is to delete all the bad photos.