What do you get when an over-educated Electrical Engineer with a camera decides to write poetry? Back this project, and you'll find out.
For most of the last 20 years, I've traveled all over the place for work. Sometimes stopping only for a few days, sometimes stopping long enough to make a home. From Point Barrow to south-east Florida and Bavaria to Honolulu, everywhere I've been has had its charms and left a mark on me. Somewhere about 2007 I purchased a decent camera and began taking pictures of the world around me to capture some of those marks in a more durable form. Over the years, I built up a collection of photographs of some amazingly beautiful places.
Roughly four years ago I sat in the quiet of an early rural south-Texas morning thinking. I had just dropped my daughter off at her very early morning job and had a few hours before the sun came up and the day officially began. Typically, I would have gone back to bed to steal a few extra hours of sleep or gone out to feed the animals and milk the goats a little early, but that morning I wasn't sleepy and didn't feel like getting a jump on the chores. Instead, I wandered into my small study and sat down at the computer. As I flipped through some of the more recent photos I'd taken, I saw one that made me think in rather poetic terms. I opened an editor and began to write what came to mind. By the time the sun came up, I had written a poem I was moderately happy with.
Years ago, I had written some poetry in an attempt to impress a few girls. Without the context of experience, and with the lame purpose behind it, it pretty well stank. I've happily forgotten the details since. However, this first renewed attempt at poetry seemed much better than those early attempts and gave me a sense of satisfaction that wasn't all that common in my day-to-day profession. After this initial nominal success, I began using poetry as a means to capture thoughts, images, and emotions that weren't well matched to my day job. Over the next few years, the collection grew and I began actively marrying some of the pictures I'd taken with poems that I'd written.
None of what I wrote was really intended for public consumption, and I had no real notion that I'd ever publish any of it. What I wrote, I wrote to please myself. However, I posted much of it on my personal blog (https://www.diligent5.org) so family and friends could read it if they felt so inclined. At some point as I looked back at what I had written, I realized that it captured a significant part of myself and that trusting in technology to keep it around was probably a bad idea. I came to the conclusion that I needed to package it up and print at least a few copies so my kids and grandchildren would have it available when I was gone.
Unfortunately, the upfront printing costs are a little outside my discretionary budget at the moment, and I haven't been able to cobble together enough loose change to overcome that obstacle. So, while I never intended to make this work available to the general public, I am willing to share it with anyone who will help me push this project the last few inches across the finish line.
The layout is done. The poems are done. The artwork is done. All I need now is a little help to get it printed.
Risks and challenges
The book is ready for submitting to the printer. All the content is original, and either generated by me or contributed and attributed accordingly. In cases where material is contributed, the owner of the content has approved it's inclusion.
The per-book cost is comparatively high due to the requirement for high-resolution full-color printing, so I run the risk of not generating enough interest to make it worth the setup and printing costs. Once funded, printing should take less than 30 days contingent on the submitted files requiring any specialized formatting or editing.
I've not attempted to self-publish a printed work before, so there is the risk of the unknown; but given the current state of print-on-demand services, I am comfortable I can quickly navigate their requirements.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)