A year, a month, and a day.
That’s how long I’ve been working on this project, as a tertiary-or-lower priority. Looking back, if I had just quit my job and poured all my effort into it, I might have been done in a month. But I took a few detours and remained open to additional work that would improve the book, and so, finally, here it is.
I’m pleased to announce that by the end of this month, my translation of Olof Berntson’s “Svenskarne i Lowell, Mass.” will be available for purchase. If you’ve been waiting for more of my poetry, I am now filling you with disappointment, because unless you’re super interested in the Swedish immigrant history of Lowell, MA from 1857 to 1917 and love reading meeting minutes, I don’t recommend buying it. It was only on my tenth or eleventh pass at reading it that I began to appreciate it, and it’s my own damn history.
If you’d like to buy it anyway, just to support me, I understand and appreciate it, but please take my disclaimer seriously. I found two jokes in the entire book. Nobody’s cause of death is listed. The one time Berntson mentions a feud in a church, he merely calls it “sad times” and moves on to the next boring thing. I did this for my family first and have no expectations of it gaining any traction beyond my relatives.
One of the reasons it took me so long to get it together is that I kept finding more family history documents, and wanted to include all of them. Sadly, few of them can be published, so I had to decide within the last few weeks to publish just the “Svenskarne” translation as a stand-alone book. And I’m finally ready to release it into the world.