Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Father Daughter Day

My other work in progress that is actually finished and in search of a publisher is Father Daughter Day. This is the story of how a dad kept his promise--reluctantly at first--to spend a Saturday with his daughter. He struggles with this as they hike in a State park, eat fast food, drive in the car, and mow the lawn. He prays often during the day. The daughter seems unaware of his misgivings, and thoroughly enjoys herself. She even turns down a chance to play with some girlfriends who drop by, because she has promised to spend the day with her daddy and wants to help him mow the lawn. By the time evening comes, he is enjoying himself, and by nightfall is more blessed than his daughter.

The unique thing about this book is that the story is told in poetry. Thirty-seven poems, in a variety of styles and lengths, more formal than non-formal. Each poem is intended to both stand on its own and form a seemless part of the story. Included are three sonnets, one sonnet sequence, a villanelle, a long ballad, a long mixed-verse story, a number of cinquains, a number of haiku, and some free form poems (not to be confused with free verse).

Some of the poems are specific to what the dad and daughter are doing. Others are more generic about the activities they are engaged in: about rising for the day, about eating breakfast, about reading, about hiking, etc. If you pull these short, generic poems out, the remaining "story" poems still make sense, though perhaps with more gaps. Three of the poems are "children's books" that the daughter brings along to read in the car.

I finished the last of these poems in June 2006. Actually, my original plan called for three other poems. Unfortunately the inspiration for these has not yet come, and, as I read the book as it is, it seems to read as a complete story. So if I never get those three written, I think I'll be okay. Of course, even for completed poems, I'm always open to further tweaking and improvement.

I submitted this to two different Christian publishers, one unsolicited and one after a conference. Both said no. I've been slowly researching, hoping to find another publisher, but no viable candidates have surfaced. This may be one may have to be self-published.

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