One of the most exciting projects I have worked on lately has been independently editing Nadia Garofalo’s debut collection of poetry, Relative Traumas. Let me tell you about her:
I met Nadia in two ways: First through the indomitable powerhouse that is the poet Georgia Park, whom some of you may be familiar with as Indie Blu(e) Publishing has published two of her incredible works and she’s a personal favorite writer of mine. Secondly, Nadia submitted to Indie Blu(e)’s best-selling anthology SMITTEN.
I was impressed with Nadia’s writing and hell, she was a really cool musician and human-being, so we kept in touch. Mid-2021 she contacted me when beginning work on her debut collection of poetry. Nadia has always been a poet and a writer, she writes gorgeous lyrics for her songs and she’s intensely talented. I was really stoked to work with her on this book. She and I are quite alike, we tend to support others 100 percent but not always see the virtue in our own work. Ironically I’m good at helping others see the strength of their work and that’s what I did here.
Nadia wasn’t sure if her first book was really something she should do. She’s a successful prop designer and buyer and has a cool life in Chicago with their flourishing music scene, hell she opened for The Smashing Pumpkins … it doesn’t get much better. But despite these successes she’s a very laid-back, humble and non-grandiose human and she was in two-minds about dipping her toe fully into a whole book of her own writing.
My job as I see it, when editing someone’s work isn’t just literal editing. It’s inspiring. Helping that person believe their project is worth doing and doing to the best of their ability. My time as an editor in Europe and then with Indie Blu(e) and The Pine Cone Review, has helped me craft a driving force for other people’s visions. It may mean changing names, photos, covers, chapters. It may mean removing some poems, putting in new ones, etc. None of this means the work isn’t brilliant. It means we’re collaborating intensely to showcase the absolute BEST.
Because why would you want anything less?
That’s what I can bring as an editor and that’s what gives me the joy I get when working with talent. I love to see their initial doubt turn to pride. It makes me so glad when others cherish their work after we’ve put so much effort and time into it and produced the very best they’ve got to give. It’s a journey and one I love walking. I prefer that than doing my own creative-thing. Sometimes others just blow you away with what they are capable of, and the sheer vision of their walk.
Nadia Garofalo was the kind of talent you really, really want to work with. So I’m extremely honored she took me along on her ride. It’s been a blast and best of all, I think the finished product; Relative Traumas (is that the best name ever?) is a true testimony to Nadia’s pure ability as a writer of songs and poetry and life. She may not yet know how good she is (which is a bit adorable, in this world of unfettered egotism) but anyone who has read her, surely does. This book is literally a stage for that work and I’m so glad to be part of that.
I love that we still have some living-breathing-true musicians who get on the road and do the grind. I love that those musicians have poetry in them and despite the knock-down-drag-out spectacle of life, write that poetry. I hope we never grow tired of those kinds of souls, for surely a world of Trader Joes and McDonalds must not become our comfort zone. Let’s always harken to the dark birds of song and post-punk revelry. And support their fitful journey by listening. Always listening. Whether in written word or shouted from a stage. These are the dear creatures that make humans so very, very intoxicating and alive.
Relative Traumas is coming out very soon and will be available via Amazon and by asking your independent bookstore. You can also buy it direct from the author. I will post those links when they are live and update this post. Please consider supporting this beautiful talent. And yes I’m hopelessly biased but even if I didn’t know Nadia, this is a book I’d want a copy of. If you love indie poets and musicians, song-writers and incredible musicians then Nadia Garofalo’s debut Relative Traumas is going to sate that hunger.
Nadia Garofalo is a writer, musician and artist working in various mediums with little discipline in any of them. She is a resident of Chicago and reluctantly admits to her upbringing in the scenic hills of western Mass. The daughter of immigrants she is intensely proud of her Italian/Jewish heritage and draws from that history often in her work. She studied interior architecture and scenic design at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and currently uses almost none of those skills working with props for tv and film. An active part of the thriving Chicago music scene she is a founding member of the modestly successful post-punk band, Ganser. Her writing has been published by Indie Blu(e) in their anthologies Smitten: This Is What Love Looks Like and As The World Burns as well as by The Whisper And The Roar writing collective. https://nadiagarofalo.medium.com/
For an interview with Nadia as one of the poets featured in the Indie Blu(e) Publishing SMITTEN project please check this out: