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Keep Moving
Cover of Keep Moving
Keep Moving
Notes on Loss, Creativity, and Change
NATIONAL BESTSELLER "A meditation on kindness and hope, and how to move forward through grief." —NPR "A shining reminder to learn all we can from this moment, rebuilding ourselves in the darkness...
NATIONAL BESTSELLER "A meditation on kindness and hope, and how to move forward through grief." —NPR "A shining reminder to learn all we can from this moment, rebuilding ourselves in the darkness...
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  • NATIONAL BESTSELLER

    "A meditation on kindness and hope, and how to move forward through grief." —NPR

    "A shining reminder to learn all we can from this moment, rebuilding ourselves in the darkness so that we may come out wiser, kinder, and stronger on the other side." —The Boston Globe

    "Powerful essays on loss, endurance, and renewal."People

    Cosmopolitan's "Best Nonfiction Books of 2020"
    Marie Claire's "2020 Books You Should Pre-Order Now"
    Parade's "25 Self-Help Books To Get Your 2020 Off On The Right Foot"
    The Washington Post's "What to Read in 2020 Based on the Books You Loved in 2019"


    For fans of Anne Lamott and Cleo Wade, a collection of quotes and essays on facing life's challenges with creativity, courage, and resilience.
    When Maggie Smith, the award-winning author of the viral poem "Good Bones," started writing inspirational daily Twitter posts in the wake of her divorce, they unexpectedly caught fire. In this deeply moving book of quotes and essays, Maggie writes about new beginnings as opportunities for transformation. Like kintsugi, the Japanese art of mending broken ceramics with gold, Keep Moving celebrates the beauty and strength on the other side of loss. This is a book for anyone who has gone through a difficult time and is wondering: What comes next?

About the Author-

  • Maggie Smith is the award-winning author of Good Bones, The Well Speaks of Its Own Poison, Lamp of the Body, and the national bestsellers Goldenrod and Keep Moving: Notes on Loss, Creativity, and Change. A 2011 recipient of a Creative Writing Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, Smith has also received several Individual Excellence Awards from the Ohio Arts Council, two Academy of American Poets Prizes, a Pushcart Prize, and fellowships from the Sustainable Arts Foundation and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. She has been widely published, appearing in The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Paris Review, The Best American Poetry, and more. You can follow her on social media @MaggieSmithPoet.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    February 10, 2020
    Poet Smith (Good Bones) reflects on loss, beauty, and transformation in a thoughtful but not entirely satisfying collection. The slight volume compiles inspirational tweets—all concluding with the admonition to “keep moving”—that Smith began writing in the wake of a divorce. The messages are loosely organized into three parts (“Revision,” “Resilience,” and “Transformation”) and interspersed with short personal essays. When read individually, the bite-size sentiments succeed as wise and compassionate pieces of encouragement. But bound together in book format, they blur together and fail to leave much of an impression. The bland, minimalist design doesn’t do the work any favors, either. Meanwhile, the essays, which carry on the same themes, but add details of Smith’s own experiences, are uneven. While some rely on tired metaphors of transformation (fire, chrysalises), others have striking and memorable imagery that showcases Smith’s eye as a poet: “like when you pull your hand out of a bucket of water, and the water takes back the space.” Smith’s reflections on her struggles with miscarriage and postpartum depression are especially affecting. Readers will wish her obvious talents had been used in a way that does them justice.

  • Kirkus

    March 15, 2020
    Words of encouragement from an award-winning poet. A couple years ago, following the end of her marriage, Smith, the author of Good Bones (2017) and other poetry collections, took to Twitter to share a daily affirmation, imploring herself and her readers to #keepmoving. Combined with original short essays, those tweets demonstrate that social media can be a source of wisdom, as the author allows her own story of grief and transformation to inspire. Drawing on her experience as a writer, Smith views the self through the metaphor of a composition, one the "author" must constantly tend to: "Accept that you are a work in progress, both a revision and a draft: you are better and more complete than earlier versions of yourself, but you also have work to do. Be open to change. Allow yourself to be revised." She continues later, "revise the story you tell yourself about rejection. All that tells you is what you were worth to someone else--not what you are worth." Whether or not we are the authors of ourselves in any real sense, the metaphor is a powerful one that encourages the agency it takes to positively reframe pain and disappointment as opportunities for growth. If this sounds like self-help, it is. Even the book's interior design has more in common with a fancy greeting card than with a traditional book, poetry or prose. But self-help needn't be a slur derived from the worst instances of the genre. Smith offers a reminder of what self-help can be at its best: intelligent, honest, uncompromising, and, most importantly, helpful. The author's frequent references to the writing life may mean the book resonates most deeply with her fellow artists, but for anyone who has known struggle--i.e., everyone--it will resonate plenty. Simple yet profound insights and advice to return to in times of confusion or loss.

    COPYRIGHT(2020) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Booklist

    April 1, 2020
    Award-winning poet Smith gained an enormous online following after her poem, "Good Bones," went viral; she then began tweeting daily goals after she and her husband ended their 19-year marriage. She addresses such topics as accepting change, letting light into your life, and surviving loneliness. Smith acknowledges the pain of loss but also celebrates new beginnings, recognizes fears but strives to be brave. Each tweet ends with the words: Keep moving. This much-anticipated book organizes the tweets into three stages: revision, resilience, and transformation. Each message appears alone on the page, resembling a short poem. Occasional bursts of prose between the tweets provide details about Smith's life and family during these difficult times. Smith is thoughtful and eloquent, expressing her understanding of the grief of separation, and sharing encouragement without being saccharine. She confesses to being a fearful child who loved solitude, and now, once again on her own while her children are away with their father, Smith finds hope in solitary times. Anyone facing loss, separation, and related challenges will find comfort in Smith's gentle words.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2020, American Library Association.)

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