I Hope This Finds You Well: Poems (Paperback)
November 2021 Indie Next List
“From weight loss solicitation emails to comments of appreciation to emails deriding her politics and her body, Baer uses these sources to create poems that pack a punch. A solid collection worth revisiting regularly.”
— Beth Bissmeyer, Carmichael's Bookstore, Louisville, KY
The author of the #1 New York Times bestseller What Kind of Woman returns with a collection of erasure poems created from notes she received from followers, supporters and detractors—an artform that reclaims the vitriol from online trolls and inspires readers to transform what is ugly or painful in their own lives into something beautiful.
“I'm sure you could benefit from jumping on a treadmill”
“Women WANT a male leader . . . It’s honest to god the basic human playbook”
These are some of the thousands of messages that Kate Baer has received online. Like countless other writers—particularly women—with profiles on the internet, as Kate’s online presence grew, so did the darker messages crowding her inbox. These missives from strangers have ranged from “advice” and opinions to outright harassment.
At first, these messages resulted in an immediate delete and block. Until, on a whim, Kate decided to transform the cruelty into art, using it to create fresh and intriguing poems. These pieces, along with ones made from notes of gratitude and love, as well as from the words of public figures, have become some of her most beloved work.
I Hope This Finds You Well is drawn from those works: a book of poetry birthed in the darkness of the internet that offers light and hope. By cleverly building on the harsh negativity and hate women often receive—and combining it with heartwarming messages of support, gratitude, and connection, Kate Baer offers us a lesson in empowerment, showing how we too can turn bitterness into beauty.
Kate Baer is an author and poet based on the East Coast. Her first book, What Kind Of Woman, was a #1 New York Times Instant Bestseller and featured in publications such as Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue.com & The Chicago Review. Her work has also been published in The New Yorker, Literary Hub and The New York Times.
— Joanna Goddard, Cup of Jo
"Baer is a different kind of Instagram poet, not only in that her poems convey a depth of emotion more cutting than the spare, self-help word-art characteristic of so many social media–propelled poet phenomena. But she also distinguishes herself by acknowledging the self-seriousness of the genre (particularly among those who are their own greatest promoters) and gently poking a hole in it."
“Author and poet Kate Baer rose to stardom with her beautiful and insightful number-one New York Times best-selling 2020 poetry collection, What Kind of Woman, but it is the very concept of her latest book of poems that makes I Hope This Finds You Well just straight-up brilliant. A collection of “erasure poems,” the book sees Baer sifting through the thousands of messages she receives online via direct messages, social-media replies, and emails to then turn them into pointed rebuttals, biting retorts, and clever reconsiderations. Like turning straw into gold, Baer tosses her inbox on the spinning wheel and weaves a collection of poems that will speak to anyone who has spent even a few moments on social media. Instant “like.”