Rupi Kaur’s ‘Milk and Honey’ Sells Half a Million Copies

When an Instagram post by Rupi Kaur was taken down for displaying a little bit of period blood in 2015, she refused to accept the unjust policing of the female body. She responded to instagram with strength and eloquence.

“You deleted a photo of a woman who is fully covered and menstruating stating that it goes against community guidelines when your guidelines outline that it is nothing but acceptable. the girl is fully clothed. The photo is mine. It is not attacking a certain group. Nor is it spam. And because it does not break those guidelines i will repost it again. I will not apologize for not feeding the ego and pride of misogynist society that will have my body in underwear but not be okay with a small leak.”

Support poured in from the online community in defense of Kaur, who kept the momentum going by using Instagram as a platform to host her poetry. The Toronto-based artist found a large, dedicated following.

After success with similar writer, Lang Leav in New Zealand, publisher, Kristy Melville, was looking to represent North American writers who could also attract a young adult readership. That’s when she stumbled across Kaur.

Melville said, “Rupi’s honest, authentic voice speaks to young people who relate to her depiction of pain and struggle but ultimate sense of hope. Rupi is not afraid to challenge taboos, and this brave form of expression inspires her readers.” Her book of poetry, Milk and Honey, has sold over half a million copies since it’s release. A successful poetry book normally sells an average of 30,000 copies, just to put that into perspective.

Melville had this to say of the book’s success:

“The emotional intensity of Rupi’s message of self-empowerment and affirmation, combined with her passionate audience really resonated and we could see through sales of her self-published edition that her readers were really responding to her message…I also think poetry, as short form writing, fits with how people are reading today.”

To find out more about Rupi and her work, visit her website at . 


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