I guess the answer is my first collection of poetry, Feasting at the Table of the Damned.
I had always loved poetry, from an early age. In college, whenever I had free electives, I always took a poetry course. And then, I began writing. Just a poem here or there. Eventually, I started sending them out, and eventually, most of them were published.
But as I began to build a reasonable body of work, I came to a crossroads. Did I really want to continue? As much as I enjoyed seeing my work published, and as much as I appreciated the positive feedback, I wasn’t certain where I was going. I knew I would always write poetry because I loved the process, the challenge of getting across an idea with power, elegance and brevity.
The realization appeared slowly but with the weight of concrete: the next step was a book, and I wasn’t sure I could do it.
I spent more time than I care to admit ceding fear to the doubt nearly every artist (except maybe Norman Mailer) experiences at some point.
And then the crazy Italian from Brooklyn who somehow wound up in Green Bay popped into my head.
The harder we work, the harder it is to surrender.
I had worked too hard, labored too long, sweated too much over my collection of poems to just walk away.
So I wrote the book and sent it out. Eventually Aquarius Press of Detroit offered me a publishing contract.
The table is set, I hope you enjoy the feast.