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Puffery: Why Am I Doing This?

Poet George Drew at MVSU

Puffery? you ask. We asked our friend George Drew to give our website visitors some insight into the book promotion process, and being a poet, he responded in poetic fashion…

That many of you might, in the heat of compositional battle, ask, Why am I doing this? I’ve no doubt. And after having won the war and you have your brave new book in hand, what then? How do you get the world to pay attention? Well, you send out emails to all your contacts, you take out advertisements, you get your baby reviewed, you do radio or tv spots, if you’re so lucky, and of course you go forth bravely and do readings, whether you like doing them or not. And in the midst of all that labor, you ask again, and again, Why am I doing this?

Certainly it isn’t for fame and fortune: We all know how fleet of foot those are. Why then indeed? Perhaps the reason is more basic than you generally take time to think. Perhaps it is because…


Once I saw a book entitled Just What the World Needs: Another Freshman English Text, or something to that effect. I easily can imagine someone reacting likewise to this book:

“Oh, dear, another book of literary puffery!” Why, then, risk it? I’m not an essayist of any note—no Lewis Thomas, Loren Eiseley, E.B. White. I know I’m not precisely because I know and love the work of these and others of their pedigree so avidly. They’re full bred; I’m mixed, which has its benefits. Whereas I can’t aspire to their elegance of style and thought, I can to a tenacity that’s mine and owes no allegiance to any but my own gut feeling, genes and mental grasp. Why this book? The work exists, that’s why. It’s mine, and I wish to let you in on it. And that’s as close to noble as I get. The rest is skin and blood and bone: I’m damned tired of first having to locate and then lug around in a bulky black binder all these pieces when I want to read them to an audience, as I sometimes do. A single slim—and I do mean slim—volume is much less strenuous, thank you. It’s really that simple. Still, since it also will exist,

I hope you find some pleasure in this book. If so, that’s good; if not, who knows? There might one day be just what the world needs: a Puffery II.

Drumming Armageddon, poetry by George Drew

Guest Post by George Drew author of Drumming Armageddon