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Keep Moving: Notes on Loss, Creativity, and Change

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3.77  ·  Rating details ·  2,208 ratings  ·  368 reviews
Marie Claire’s The 2020 Books You Should Pre-Order Now
The Washington Post’s What to Read in 2020 Based on the Books You Loved in 2019
Parade’s 25 Self-Help Books To Get Your 2020 Off On The Right Foot

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 yo
...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published October 6th 2020 by Atria/One Signal Publishers
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Average rating 3.77  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,208 ratings  ·  368 reviews


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Diane S ☔
Sep 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nfr-2020
3.5 Although Smith is focusing on her own mental health after her divorce, there is much within that can apply to our current situation. We have all suffered losses this year whether it be loved ones, loss of freedom, loss of living without fear, loss of businesses, livlhoods We all share a common grief over the heartache and lack of control over what is happening in the world, in our own countries, states. Covid has upended our lives in unprecedented ways, creating a new normal but one not easi ...more
britt_brooke
Minuscule snippets of Smith’s divorce, miscarriages, and postpartum depression are buried among annoyingly repetitive self-affirmations. The phrase “Keep Moving” appears 170 times in only 224 pages (per kindle search function). As a whole, this lacked cohesiveness and purpose. A straight up memoir about her experiences would’ve been more impactful.

PUB DATE: 10.6.2020

Thank you, NetGalley, for the opportunity to read and review this book!
Deborah Harkness
I am loving loving LOVING Maggie Smith's book. It is the perfect book for these difficult times and really spoke to me as someone who needs to feel creative to feel alive—challenging at the moment! Just bought my second copy this morning at Waterstones, Cardiff ! Lent the other. ...more
Rachel León
Aug 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Maybe I should give a second disclaimer about how Maggie and I have followed each other on Twitter for years. Long enough that I remember when she posted she and her husband had separated, and though I'm not great at keeping up with Twitter, I remember purposely looking at Maggie's posts because through her pain she somehow found such bravery. I went through my own personal struggles during the t
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Charlotte
Sep 20, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
This little inspirational volume is probably best appreciated in snippets, as a regular dose of affirmation and cheerleading that could help the reader "keep moving" through difficult seasons of life. I read it in one sitting and found it too repetitive, but that was my fault-- not the book's.

My more important quibble with the book is that optimism, determination, and acceptance aren't sufficient for facing life's hardest challenges. Sometimes, we are crushed beneath the weight of loss. Sometime
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mentalexotica
Dec 14, 2020 rated it it was ok
It’s not great, I have to say. And I know this review is going to spat upon. But this book is quite trite. And UNLESS, you’ve lived under a rock your whole life, there is very little here you haven’t heard before, read somewhere, heard similarly, or just known in your bones. Now, I am not knocking self-help books or life motivational guides. They are GREAT and hugely impactful. Sometimes they are wildly unique in the perspective they offer, and some of them just find you at the right place at th ...more
Jacob
Aug 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I‘ve enjoyed aesthetic gloom for something like fifteen years now. Embracing cynicism and doom gave my younger self an easy path forward (and there are some things from that time that I’ll always love), but I’m starting to accept that any kind of future worth having is going to require at a minimum some dabbling in hope. With that in mind, I think Smith’s book might be exactly what my (and possibly your) 2020 needed.

“Today I think of myself as a ‘recovering pessimist.’ I know that optimism is no
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Misse Jones
Nov 15, 2020 rated it liked it
“Stop searching yourself trying to understand why someone else treated you the way they did: the answer is not inside you, it’s inside of them, out of reach. Instead, work on understanding—truly knowing—yourself.” —KEEP MOVING.

In Keep Moving, author Maggie Smith gives us resources on how to keep moving in the midst of all else while grappling with her own challenges. After struggling through a divorce followed by single parenthood, postpartum depression, anxiety, loss and grief, Smith finds comf
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Britt B
Feb 21, 2021 rated it liked it
Shelves: audiobooks
"What I know to be true is that one hopeful person will accomplish more than 100 cynics. Why? Because the hopeful person will try."

I wouldn't say this book was life-changing or anything only because it wasn't relatable for me personally (as she is writing from the perspective of a recent divorcee mother of two). Even so, I still enjoyed listening, it was very quick, and I could agree with some of her points and perspectives. If I could go back, I wouldn't have chosen the audiobook - I almost cou
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Sarah Ressler Wright
Oct 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audiobook
Maggie’s voice is outstanding and this book is heartfelt & excellent. Short aphorisms to keep spirits up intermingled with short essays about moving foreword after loss. I love that we are OWU classmates & now friends & this book is a bestseller-wow!
Jonathan Tennis
Dec 01, 2020 rated it it was ok
I read "Good Bones" at some point in the past few years and so when I saw that the poet was releasing a new book on loss, creativity and change, I was excited to pick up a copy.

There were some good pieces in this and I don't want to act like her losses are insignificant. If you've been on this planet for more than a few days, you've probably suffered some loss in life and so it's a place where we can all connect.

I hate to say it but a lot of it felt like something I would expect from a Rupi Ka
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Ashley
Jan 20, 2021 added it
Shelves: fun, poetry
Sometimes I feel shame that I'm still not "over" my divorce-- that even in a new life that's so much better, I have this last, lingering bit of grief and anger just rolling around. I found some of the short aphorisms and notes in this book incredibly affirming (oh, I'm not the only one who feels this way!) and the language beautiful. I found a lot of potential journal prompts in this book.

And, for what it's worth, I would absolutely give this book to someone going through a divorce. This was the
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Shelley
Oct 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've had breakups that brought me to my knees, endings that left me destroyed, crying, hopeless. I think I learned a little from each of them, but I never worked the inspiring magic trick poet Maggie Smith did with Keep Moving.  

Somehow, she took the crushing, world-altering blow of a wrenching divorce and transformed it into hope for herself and others, not to mention writing a bestseller in the process.

Smith started by writing a brief, hopeful note of encouragement to herself daily and post

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Micah
Feb 09, 2021 rated it it was amazing
As one who does not read much poetry, Smith's collection is empowering and thought provoking. She even reads the audio version. ...more
Jennifer
Jan 04, 2021 rated it really liked it
Beautiful, poignant, and encouraging. I’m glad I had the opportunity to read this.
m
Mar 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction, e-books
"Think of grief, anger, worry as bricks or planks of wood. Stop staring at the materials, half believing they were delivered to you by mistake, half expecting a truck to haul them away. Accept that these are your materials right now. Start building. Keep moving."

I was introduced to Maggie Smith's work via Twitter, and her "Keep Moving" affirmations initially reminded me of the "Gmorning/Gnight" tweets of Lin-Manuel Miranda (also now in book form). Smith's messages of encouragement, however, have
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Angie
Nov 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-library
It's not often I find a book that's everything I need in a moment. For me, this was that kind of book. I've been dealing (or not dealing?) with grief (from a variety of things from divorce to death) for a while now. This book was what I needed. I appreciated the poetic quotes and bits and pieces of a story.
I would not hesitate to recommend this book to a friend going through hard times. It's the type of book I'm not quite ready to pass on yet as I still turn back to various pages and ponder the
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Sheila Jungco
Feb 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing
In between the journey of finding a new job in a new place. In between the prequalifying exams and technical interviews. While on queue, I was reading this book. Her words are exactly what I needed to tell myself while I'm in this in-betweens. Randomly picked it from my TBR list, just because I feel like I am not moving enough. The line, the people you have to compete with for that one post, the queue of uncertainty, creates anxiety of the future that apparently empty. This book gave me spells a ...more
Rosemarie Donzanti
Nov 02, 2020 rated it liked it
A little piece of candy to help sooth and sweeten a bitter, broken heart. Maggie Smith (not THE MAGGIE SMITH) writes about loss after her divorce. But she doesn’t write about the divorce, she writes about the baby steps to recovery, to “Keep Moving”...in snippets, very small snippets. She became popular on Twitter and Instagram and this book is a collection of her thoughts. Since, praise the good Lord, I am not deeply struggling at the moment, it did not hold great meaning for me, again, in this ...more
cat
Jan 14, 2021 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2021
A book built on a set of 'keep moving' affirmations created by the author in the aftermath of the loss of a marriage. Short and definitely trite at times, but also full of the actual pain of figuring out how to motivate yourself forward when it feels like everything has fallen apart. ...more
Monica
Oct 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is exactly the book I needed to read right now. A meditation on both grief and hope, the book contains both short, tweet-length thoughts as well as a narrative of Smith’s survival of divorce and parenthood. I think a lot of people would benefit from reading this right now.
Ray
Jan 14, 2021 rated it really liked it
Much of the book contains a quote or thought on each page, interspersed with narrative about the author's experiences. This is a book that one needs to stick with to fully appreciate what the author has to say. I found many of her ideas inspiring and a few I plan to add to my repertoire of coping mechanisms. ...more
Molly
Oct 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
I devoured Keep Moving in one sitting and would recommend to anyone who's been struggling lately with uncertainty, change, anxiety (aka, most of us?) 

The book is a compilation of Maggie's thoughts following her divorce, but I found the messages to be universal to any times of upheaval. I'm not much of a self-help gal, but this one offers little bits of hope and perspective, and I think I'll find myself returning to my many highlighted passages when I'm feeling down.

Thanks Netgalley + Atria for
...more
Nerdette Podcast
Oct 24, 2020 rated it liked it
Especially in the current moment, a book that champions the beauty of change is important. However, this one ended up feeling a bit surface-level and repetitive to me. If you like collections of lovely aphorisms, this is for you. But I would have liked a little more to sink my teeth into.
Julia Hatfield
Nov 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A quick but poignant read - something I know I’ll refer back to again and again for inspiration.
Becki
Jan 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
“Think of the moon, how solitary it looks, and know that’s just a trick of perspective: the moon is not alone, and neither are you. Remember how vast and star-filled your universe is, and how it continues to expand. Shine on.” This is the type of tidbit you will read over and over! I realized I was highlighting the whole damn thing!
Sarah Obsesses over Books & Cookies
Thank you Netgalley!!
a tiny little book to read when you're looking for a teaspoon of humanity. It's twitter sized chunks of motivation for those who don't really think they can deal with their life at the moment.
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Amy
Feb 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I had won this Jan 3rd, on Goodreads, it couldn’t have come at a better time. Jan 1, my brother had passed away. It’s author is a poet, she wrote it after a divorce. Loss is loss, we all grieve loss, no matter what that loss is. Whether it be a person, an idea, a relationship. So much of it resonated for me in this book. I’ve been divorced, I’ve been alienated from family. The timing of this book could not have been better. I thought about passing it on to someone who could use it but I don’t th ...more
Jonathon Wilson
Oct 28, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2020-releases
A collection of inspirational soundbites and personal stories written by Maggie Smith in the aftermath of her divorce. It’s basically one of those little wooden placards with a quotation on that you can buy and hang up in your kitchen, just in full-length book form. After a while you realise that Smith’s lovely writing is obscuring the fact that she’s just working through the same stages of grief as all of us do, and recycling the same platitudes in order to do it. There is definitely some valua ...more
Megan
Mar 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This was not at all what I expected and turned out to be so much more! It was exactly what I needed to read right now - kinda like short shots of inspiration and motivation and understanding. I'm keeping this one on my nightstand to refer to each day. I received this book free from the published in exchange for my honest review. Definitely worth reading! 5 stars ...more
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Maggie Smith is the author of the national bestseller Keep Moving: Notes on Loss, Creativity, and Change (One Signal/Simon & Schuster 2020); Good Bones (Tupelo Press, 2017); The Well Speaks of Its Own Poison (Tupelo Press 2015), winner of the Dorset Prize, selected by Kimiko Hahn; and Lamp of the Body (Red Hen Press 2005), winner of the Benjamin Saltman Poetry Award; and three prizewinning chapboo ...more

Articles featuring this book

Someday, this year will end! And with the ringing in of 2021, we will come to the end of this year's Goodreads Reading Challenge. Of course,...
209 likes · 105 comments
“When life held your hand in the flames, it taught you something about the kind of burning you can endure. You survived: don’t forget that, and don’t diminish it. KEEP MOVING.” 5 likes
“It is not your job to make other people comfortable with who you are.” 1 likes
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