Keep Moving: Notes on Loss, Creativity, and Change (Hardcover)

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Staff Reviews

In a world in which so much seems stagnant right now, Maggie Smith reminds us to keep moving. Smith gives readers a glimpse into her life post-divorce through a series of affirmations and autobiographical clips, often insightful interactions with her children. Part memoir, part self-help, and part book of quotes, this is the perfect read to cope with the woes of the world, whether personal or global. Learn from the past, be mindful of the present, and look to the future.

— Sean

October 2020 Indie Next List

“Maggie Smith hits the nail on the head with her stunning book of quotes and essays. This inspiring read gives you the validation to address your feelings and the permission to move forward with a new outlook. Much like a talk with a good friend, you feel heard and comforted. I devoured this treasure in one sitting and am starting a list of everyone I want to share it with.”
— Maxwell Gregory (OLD RECORD), Lake Forest Book Store, Lake Forest, IL



“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

For fans of Glennon Doyle, Cheryl Strayed, and Anne Lamott, 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 You Could Make This Place Beautiful, 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.

Praise For…

"In a season of unprecedented uncertainty, KEEP MOVING has arrived just in time."
Bookpage (starred review) 

"Keep a meditation on kindness and hope, and how to move forward through grief."

“Powerful essays on loss, endurance, and renewal.”

"It’s in these essays that Smith exerts her superpower as a writer: her ability to find the perfect concrete metaphor for inchoate human emotions and explore it with empathy and honesty."

“In the end, it is much larger than any individual, much taller than a personal stack of obstacles. Keep Moving has the ability to look inside of us and see our struggles, too."

"A title for the moment."
—Associated Press

"Keep Moving is 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."
Boston Globe

"An excellent COVID-19-era pick me up.”
Huffington Post

"Part meditation, part essay collection and all inspiration, this beautiful little book will keep you moving forward, no matter what's holding you back." 
Good Housekeeping

"Smith's gem is packed with luminous quotes and essays about resilience, transformation and moving forward no matter the circumstances."

"Keep Moving speaks to you like an encouraging friend reminding you that you can feel and survive deep loss, sink into life’s deep beauty, and constantly, constantly make yourself new."
—Glennon Doyle, #1 New York Times Bestselling author of Love Warrior and Untamed

"In Keep Moving, poet Maggie Smith takes what William James called 'torn-to-pieces-hood' and knits it into something new and surprising and fortifying. I'm so grateful for the clarity, compassion, and wit in these pages. This is a book that will change you, a book you will want to give to someone you love. I’ve never read anything quite like it.”
—Lucy Kalanithi, Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine, Stanford University, and widow of Paul Kalanithi, author of When Breath Becomes Air

“Every once in a long, long while a book comes along that challenges and changes everything. Keep Moving is exactly that book: an ingenious synthesis of poetry, proverbs, journaling, lyrical prose, belles-lettres, psalms, meditations, and aphorisms. It defies any tidy definition, and thus, practically defines a new genre that gives everyone—no matter what walk of life—the gift of pausing to reflect on what we didn’t know we already knew about ourselves because we never had words for it, until Maggie Smith. These pages give us a unique and poetic opportunity to recognize the joys within our failures, the peace within our terrors, the simplicity within our complex lives—and then some! It is sure to become a classic that will be read for decades to come.”
—Richard Blanco, Presidential Inaugural Poet, author of How to Love a Country 

Keep Moving offers a bouquet of generosities in one hand, and a bouquet of soft but firm honesty in the other…. A promise that what doesn’t get better sometimes gets easier. And that, too, is worthy of celebration.”
—Hanif Abdurraqib, author of Go Ahead in the Rain: Notes to a Tribe Called Quest

“I read this book in one sitting during one of the most difficult weeks of my life….This isn’t lofty self-help stuff; she doesn’t speak from above. Instead, she speaks next to you, whispering right in your ear that we are all in the trenches together. Every single page of this book made me breathe a little deeper and feel a little less alone.”
—Amanda Palmer, singer, songwriter, musician, author of The Art of Asking

“I wish I’d had a copy of Keep Moving when my first marriage ended. It would have consoled my fears about being alone. Maggie Smith writes so honestly without being brutal, and she shows readers hope while avoiding the saccharine... To experience relief from a book is a rare and wonderful thing. Keep Moving gave me that relief.”
—Bella Mackie, author of Jog On

“I lived this book in real time. I was going through something hard and heartbreaking, and every day I’d log onto social media….to read what you now hold in your hands: truth and pain and empathy and the wisdom that comes with living. We keep moving. I kept moving. So can you. I will carry copies of this beautiful gift of a book in my pockets and give them to everyone I know.”
—Megan Stielstra, author of The Wrong Way to Save Your Life

“Candid, lyrical, and full of empathy, this is a book that feels vital and welcome in these times . . . . A stunning and wise piece of work.”
—Sinéad Gleeson, author of Constellations 

“Maggie Smith’s mantras are a faithful and forgiving companion, coaxing us through the darkness and toward our own resilience.”
—Rebecca Soffer, coauthor Modern Loss: Candid Conversation About Grief. Beginners Welcome.

“Maggie Smith’s voice is the one I hear in my head, the one that keeps me going when I don’t feel I can. And now, with this book, she has gifted the entire world with that particular brand of magic."
—Jennifer Pastiloff, author of On Being Human

"Keep Moving is perfect for right now"
—Al Roker, The Today Show

"A lovely reflective and insightful book that elaborates how one can survive loss and appreciate life's beauty. Reading Maggie's work made me remember why I love meditation and poetry."

Product Details
ISBN: 9781982132071
ISBN-10: 1982132078
Publisher: Atria/One Signal Publishers
Publication Date: October 6th, 2020
Pages: 224
Language: English