Friday, September 29, 2006

All this micro-pressing has distracted me from my other duties

It's been like a year since I've google-stalked my 9th grade telephone boyfriend. He crossed my mind today -- surely a sign of my awesome psychic spidey powers -- according to his myspace page on September 30th his CD will be released. That's like -- Saturday.

Check out that photo -- what a bitchin' aura -- I can't believe I never even held his hand!

I totally dropped the ball on this one -- my people could have worked with his people and we could have synced up the No Tell Books release with bryan senatore -- the name of his CD. It could have been huge.

Why don't poets name their books after themselves?

It seems to work for the musicians.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Good, I'm glad kids got their own poet laureate. I was tired of having to share with Gideon. Back off pants pooper, Hall is mine, all mine.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

The No Tell Books site is up -- although the titles (aside from the 2006 Bedside Guide) aren't available for purchase until Monday, October 2 on Lulu -- and in a couple weeks for the longer-length collections (48+ pages) on Amazon, B&N and Powell's.

The only order fullfillment I will personally handle is the yearly subscription offer -- all 2006 titles for the low-low price of $45 (plus postage). You can pre-order a subscription now, if you wish. I expect to begin fulfilling those orders after October 9.

I will also work directly with booksellers who don't use Ingram or wish to sell the chapbooks.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Never Say I Don't Sacrifice For Poetry!

Monday night's Burlesque photos are up.

Kim Addonizio's $42 thong record was broken by Moira Egan's scarf.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Where I'll Be Tonight


Cover Design: Charles Orr

This Week at No Tell

William Allegrezza forgets history and cities and darkness this week at No Tell Motel.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

10 Months to Conquer

Christmas 2005

September 2006


Saturday, September 23, 2006

Big Ass Typo Caught in the 11th Hour

An unfortunate reality of micro-press publishing.

All publishing really, but potentially more so with smaller publishing (fewer eyes).

Not nearly as unfortunate as not catching it before the ISBN is approved and the author/review copies ordered.

It was caught.

Deep breath.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Invitation to . . .

Totally Fucked Up Poetry Party

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Coming Soon

Logo Design: Nancy King

I have three gorgeous print proofs in my hands (or I did a moment ago, had to set them down to type this). Soon there will be four when the finished cover art arrives for Wanton Textiles. The books will be available for purchase in early October.

I am not going to be modest. I am incredibly proud to be publishing each of these titles. In the coming weeks, I'm going to write about them here, a lot.

Cover Design: Shanna Compton

Cover Design: Maureen Thorson

Cover Design: Stacy Elaine Dacheux

Last Thought for the Night

Once upon a time, when I was young lass, I thought being married to Charlie Sheen would be totally awesome.

On April 16, 2002 I received a rejection that threw me into a rage. It wasn't my first rejection and it wasn't from a magazine I liked. Why did I send work there? Good question. This particular magazine promised a personal critique of all submissions and a free subscription to all "serious poets" regardless of whether the work is taken.

Rejection + no free subscription deeming me 'unserious' + some really inane, idiotic comments in my personal critique = my not submitting my work anywhere for six months and putting all my energies into starting my jewelry design business.

I'm glad that happened. Not because it was discouraging, but because I clearly needed a grip and reaccess my priorities and why I was doing what I was doing. Not worrying about where I was going to send my work, not standing by the mailbox waiting for submission responses -- but focusing on creation, both with the jewelry and the poems I was still writing because I wanted to write them -- it was like going on one of those juice-fast diets. Cleansing.

I wrote about this here before, but the next year I injured myself and for several weeks couldn't make jewelry -- spent most of my time on the sofa surfing online poetry magazine and blogs. Back then I didn't edit an online magazine or blog (cause blogs were for socially inept weirdos and I had plenty of real friends). What I found were a lot of poets my age (and some younger) doing things I wanted to be doing. They weren't letting other people in perceived positions of influence or power stop them from their thing. Many weren't living in big cities or "poetry-centers" yet had daily interactions, sharing of ideas, sharing their poems, developing friendships with other poets from all over. After I got over my initial envy, I started thinking maybe I could do my thing too. You know, get over myself and get back to work.

Maybe this is just a cycle I have to go through every time I graduate. I had to get over myself after I graduated from my "prestigious" university and accept I was right where a 21 year-old just entering the job force belonged -- working a graveyard shift from Tuesday through Saturday doing a job I didn't much like. Luckily I'm not a quitter, because that job that I deemed so beneath me was an amazing opportunity and taught me many things I use on a regular basis.

The year following my completion of my MFA was weird too. The day after I got back from graduation, the telephone rang at 6:45 a.m. (who calls at that hour other than to say somebody died?). Chris answered in a sleepy haze -- it was for me, but he told the caller I wasn't available and to leave a message. The caller was a reader from Boulevard (I have no idea who) and he wanted to talk to me because he just loved my poems and he was sending them up to the editor and he had a really good feeling about the whole thing. After I got over my initial anger at Chris for not giving me the damn phone (at that point I had only placed one poem so any attention was a big deal), I was esctatic. My poems were going to appear in Boulevard! I was really going places! (hooohaaaaheeeee)

You see where this is going -- months later and after two letters of inquiry I got that "oooh, so close" handwritten letter from the editor. That was right around the time of the no-free-subscription-for-you rejection. It was a god damn conspiracy, I tell ya.

What happened to those poems? 3 out of 4 of the poems sent to the latter and all 3 of the Boulevard submitted poems eventually appeared in publications that I really like (and where they belonged).

But they wouldn't have appeared anywhere if I hadn't checked myself before I wrecked . . .

Present 500 pound gorilla excluded, little, if any, of my work appears in places I thought I needed to get into when I first graduated. Some folks consider that as my settling, or as evidence of my suckitude, mediocrity, lice-riddenosity. Everyone has their opinion. I consider my putting so much value on those things back then as a lack of vision, confusion, a head filled with post-MFA crap.

When the conversation comes up with other poets who are frustrated about power and influence and the system, I give my standard you-don't-have-to-participate, if you don't want to, you can pursue poetry however you like, however it works for you. It might not be the way you expected and yes, those people can make it tough for you to get certain jobs, have your work appear in certain venues -- but they can't stop you from poetry and if what you really care about is poetry -- the first service you can do for it is not to confuse it with acknowledgments and awards, etc. or all the other ways some choose to measure poetry. Those are measures.

There are always two responses. The first is something along the lines of "I never thought of it that way" or "Oh who do you think you're kidding, with your dopey little magazine and wannabe press -- that illegitimacy might be good enough for you, but I'm a serious poet."

For those folks, I recommend a publication that gives out free subscriptions to all the serious poets.

But that's not for me, I don't qualify which is good because I find being serious much too depressing.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Dear "my cat is sneezing blood" Google Searcher

If that wasn't a hypothetical and your poor kitty truly is sneezing blood, please call your veterinarian.

I don't know Mr. Whiskers, but I'm worried about his health.

I don't think it was the spinach. I'm feeling better.

why did I taste the spinach?

I haven't slept yet. Sick all night.

Thought about why might I not feel so great.

Thought about the big ass sampler plate we ordered Friday night at an Ethiopian restaurant.

Why did I taste the spinach?

Mother forwarded the very scary Fox News e-alert days before.

I knew.

Someone said, Maybe we shouldn't eat the spinach on that big ass sampler plate?

Someone else said (not TB, not sister-in-law, this is DC where it's around 1 out of 3), I'm a lawyer and I say what are the chances?

He was a lawyer!

There were chances and ours were low!

Why did I taste the spinach?

I didn't want the spinach.

Except that it was forbidden.

6 a.m. I googled e coli and discovered the symptoms start between 3 and 7 days after ingesting the bacteria.

Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday . . . .

Why did I taste the spinach?

Ah, but my symptoms don't match.

And I'm feeling better -- seems more like my Monday night dinner didn't agree with me.

But still, next time I won't taste the spinach.

Monday, September 18, 2006

One of the things I love about poetry is that if I see something I think is amiss, I can go about and work towards improving it, if not directly, in a new way, my way. I'm quite enamored with my way. If I don't see poems written like or about _________, I can write them. If I don't see certain poets' work getting attention, I can bring attention to them. If I don't see certain poets' work getting published, I can publish said deserving work. If I don't see books getting published that I'd like to see published, I can publish them. If I can't find anyone to publish my work, I can publish it myself.

But what am I supposed to do in an election a month and a half from now where my choices are between a candidate who makes ignorant racial remarks or a candidate that makes ignorant sexist remarks?

A guy from one of the campaign's knocked on my door yesterday and asked how I'd be voting.

I think I'm leaning towards the sexist, I agree with him on more issues, I think. Or maybe I'll vote for a socialist or libertarian if they're on the ballot, but no, I probably wouldn't agree with them on many issues either. Or maybe not vote at all, but I almost always vote, so yeah, I guess it's likely I'll be voting for the repugnant sexist.

What to do, what to do -- I guess I could run. I'm old enough. Hmm, that'll take a lot more money than publishing a book on POD. I could start a new government. I did one time when I was a kid and made myself ruler and it was pretty awesome until TB turned half the neighborhood against me in the St. Agnes Lane Revolution of 1983. On second thought, that wasn't much fun and I have little reason to believe she wouldn't stage a coup again.

Maybe I should go write a poem instead.

Or proof the print galley that arrived at my door while I was typing this post. The Attention Lesson by PF Potvin -- fuck yeah!

This Week at No Tell

Alison Stine is greeted with an open belt this week at No Tell Motel.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Also while I was at Carly's party, I talked with a poet who shared her book publication woes. Actually it's a pretty standard situation, one I've heard (with slight variations) a number of times. Some years back she won a "prestigious" first book prize, was reviewed in many places and sold out the entire 2500 print run. The press that published her award winning book asked to have first crack at her next manuscript. A couple years later her second manuscript was ready, the editor she worked with on her first book was gone and it turns out the press didn't ever publish additional titles by the award winners. She sent to other contests and non-contest reading periods -- often getting personal letters from editors saying they loved her book, it was wonderful and if only they had a spot . . .

Now it's years later and she still hasn't found a home for her second manuscript. What should she do? she asked.

I wanted to tell her to self-publish it, but she teaches in a writing program and that would probably be bad for her career -- and that's how she makes her living, so l had to be conscious of her particular situation.

So what is she to do? I talked a bit with her about micro-presses, something I'm guessing she wouldn't have thought she'd have to consider a few years ago (her first book was a big hit), but she was interested in hearing more. I told her about my press, my tiny budget per book, etc. She asked how I got word out about books -- clearly I'm not buying advertising space in print publications (does that work for poetry books?).

The conversation further affirmed my very firm affirmation that I'm not interested in getting into teaching and limiting my work's options for finding an audience.

Neither am I interested in sitting in weekly workshops or any classroom for that matter.

I reserve my exception for any visiting non-genius, simply-fabulous lecturer appointments -- you know, where I can stand in front of a room once a week and talk about myself -- that would be pretty cool. I'd probably do that for free.

But the teaching path means all the awesome online and micro-press journals -- with work I love -- I'd be discouraged from sending work to, or at the very least my "good" work because it wouldn't add much to my CV. Instead all the boring, dull, prestigious publications I'd be trying break into so I could "stand out" from the other 300 applications. Or look good for a tenure commitee.

I'd have to deal with the gatekeepers on a regular basis.

Bleh bleh bleh -- I've done stuff like for other non-poetry jobs so I could list those magic combination of words on my resume and yeah, that's part of life and if you want to participate and be successful, that's what you're going to have to do, but I don't want that to be part of my poetry. It's part of my life enough already.

People often ask me if I want to teach and don't believe me when I say no. The same friend asks every single time he sees me and politely listens to my reasoning why I don't -- and he knows me pretty well -- but even he doesn't believe me.

It's the old but you could do *that* and yeah, maybe I could (or maybe showing up to interviews in sequined hot shorts will ensure I'd never get hired). But I could do *this* instead and *this* is what I'm excited about and this is poetry we're talking about and if I'm not excited about it, I don't see any reason to do it.

And I don't begrudge those doing it for a salary, health care, home, electricity, food. That's important stuff. What's the saying, oh yeah, some of my best friends teach in university writing programs! Some of them are wonderful teachers doing important work. All I'm saying there are a lot of reasons for a poet not to go that route and believe me, it's not because I look down on teaching (I definitely don't), and it's not that I don't have any self-esteem about my work or myself (I'm quite smitten with myself). The teaching of creative writing and literature flourishes well without my participation.

Think of all the young, hot, impressionable students I'm not getting a chance to tap. More for you!

Coming soon -- new poems in the Fuckhole Review. Stay tuned.

Friday night I attended the release party for Carly Sach's the steam sequence. I'm supposed to make fun of Carly for getting drunk, but what's to make fun? It was her night! Just probably not her morning on Saturday -- if I had to guess.

That night a guy came up to me with a napkin and asked for my autograph. At first I thought Oh wow, aren't I the celebrity! and then realized he thought I was Carly. Another guy thought I was Carly too.

I guess all us brunettes with glasses look the same.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Watching a cat barf all over the floor is hilarious, if you're one and a half.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

past simple Now Online

Announcement from Jim Goar:

past simple, a new online rag is out an ready to be seen. You can find prose and poetry by Richard Froude, Pirooz Kalayeh, Matthew Langley, Dorthea Lasky, Tao Lin, Reb Livingston, Farid Matuk, Gina Myers, Logan Ryan Smith, Tyler Smith, Aaron Tieger, Gabriella Torres and art by Stacy Elaine Dacheux at


You can read my new poems here.

Ginsberg: Stinky?

Since when did the National Review start writing about poetry?

Did I ever tell you that during my freshman and sophomore years in college, I had a National Review subscription? Do you know how completely uncool it was to have that publication delivered to my dorm? It was a gift from my uncle. He wanted to keep my mind balanced and felt NR was just the magazine to do it. Apparently all the liberal . . . I don't know . . . rampant ass fucking ? (don't really remember, the 90's, what a blur!) that went on at universities was a big threat to my, um, I don't know, mind? reasoning? soul?

I'm not sure what that subscription saved me from, but 12 years after graduation I'm doing OK and should probably be thankful for the favor.

I mean, hey, look at me now.

Reb isn't a persona.

She's a hoax.

In reality, the author of this blog is a 58 year-old dude looking for a publisher for his true memoirs.

He slept with a lot of starlets in the 70's.

And kept meticulous notes.

Do you feel betrayed?

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Conversation While Opening the No Tell Books Checking Account

Bank Officer: Estimated yearly revenue?

Me: Oh, not that much.

BO: Under $20,000?

Me: You betcha.

BO: Will you need statements sent to anyone else other that you?

Me: Not unless I get an old man investor sweet on me and doesn't care that I blow through all of his money.

Any nutty old man investors sweet on me out there? Goofy old ladies? Emotionally challenged trust fund kids?

That's OK, keep your money.

No Tell Books is POD, fiscally conservative, all the books covers have images of big beautiful breasts!

No Tell Books is gonna break even!

And if not, the bank automatically approved the press for an $18,000 credit line even after I told them the business was unlikely to make much money publishing poetry and would only be able pay back loans in verse.

Yeah, it's the poet with her head up her ass. Hello bankers, do we know our roles? Mine is to make poetry books. I thought yours was to make money?

Addendum: I've discussed it with Chris. I'm going to use that $18,000 line of credit to buy a van and mattress (to save on hotel expenses for travelling poets -- get your mind of the gutter).

That's right boys and girls, the No Tell Poetry Van is coming to your town!

Dear Nutty Old Man Investor, please send gas money!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

3rd print proof ordered! Only one to go.

Last night was dinner with Chris' high school friend at the chili place I frequented during my last week of pregnancy when I was trying to hurry out lazy Gideon (didn't work).

The friend's name is also Chris (of course).

I had the Cincinnati-style chili, the girlie choice -- ground cinnamon instead of a lot of grease.

Anyhow, the restaurant was loud and this Chris speaks softly (compared to my Chris who speaks loudly, but too quickly, best described as verbally smudgy, it's maddening but I persevere).

I missed big chunks of sentences in the conversation and when this Chris spoke explicitly about picking up street prostitutes I was beside myself.

The explanation is this Chris is a police officier in North Carolina, and occasionally works with vice. Although he usually does SWAT work and I initially didn't get the "for work" context of his comments.

See, I came to the table expecting dinner-time tales of shooting people. . .

and this is America, where shooting someone is less shocking than blowing someone.

He did mention "no-tell motels" which always interests me. I told him about my No Tell Motel and gave him my card.

2 print proofs down (er ordered), 2 to go. Waiting on covers and in one case, proofreading marks. Now I haven't seen any of the proofs yet, but expect all four books to be released on schedule in early October. All four books will be available on Lulu immediately, the two longer collections (Covey's and Potvin's) will also be available on Amazon, B&N, Powell's in the following weeks for a higher "retail" price (the booksellers/distributor take a big cut). As always, I suggest people buy books on Lulu. The price is better, the paper weight of the books is a little heavier and No Tell Books clears more money. But buy them however you like. The chapbooks don't have ISBNs and will only be available on Lulu or via the author.

No Tell Books will probably offer yearly subscriptions on the site -- (all the books published in a year for one low price) -- but that's the only order fulfillment I'll personally be handing.

Hopefully the website will be ready by then.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Cause It's About Family

That's right -- Happy Birthday Tender Buttons -- one day late, but it's not like you were gonna check this on a Sunday.

Mother is right, you're very very special.

This Week at No Tell

Charles Jensen sits outside the bathroom door this week at No Tell Motel.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Call for Subs

From Ross White:

INCH, the magazine of short poems and microfiction, is looking for keen poems for its second issue. If you love small poems, or even if you don't love them but you happen to have written a few, INCH would love to see your work. Check our submission guidelines and send us the sassiest of your one- to nine-line poems.

INCH #1 is now available!

Poetry by:
Ellen Bush
Melissa Eleftherion
Michael McFee
Chris Tonelli
Laura Li Ziegler

Fiction by:
Liliana V. Blum
Will Rodriguez

Translations by:
Toshiya Kamei

Thursday, September 07, 2006

In middle school, I desperately wanted a boy (any boy) to give me a mizpah charm necklace. That never happened.

What I got was a BFF gold charm from a girl and years later she wore it to my wedding, which was very sweet and thoughtful, but . . .

it still doesn't change that no boy in 7th or 8th grade thought me worthy of a symbol that demonstrated an "emotional bond between people who are separated (either physically or by death)."

I'll show them.

The McEarring is ruining American jewelry. Every store: rows and rows of hoops and studs and variations on hoops and studs. How tired. There are too many jewelry designers. I think at any given time there should only be three.

I should always be one of those designers, even when I haven't designed anything in over two years.

I realize that only leaves you with two designers, but that's how I want it.

Thank you for reading my essay.

The word great brings to mind a cereal box.

The word master reminds me of three things: slavery, gamers and auto-erotic asphyxiation.

While I've been known to enjoy a game of Warcraft every once in a while, those are three things I hope never to be associated with.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Met TB at the mall on her lunch break. Handed off the Wanton Textiles galleys for her to proof.

TB has the gift of being able to look at someone for 10 seconds and find 20 things wrong.

Best proofreader ever.

She bought me a cookie.

I bought her a ChickFila sandwich.

We're good sisters like that.

Been doing pilates for over a year and while I'm improving, my shoulders are still always clenched up to my ears. Even when I'm consciously trying to keep them down.

I think that says a lot about me, but I don't think I like those implications.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Sorry no poetry blogging today, spent the afternoon with Gideon watching hilarious cat videos on YouTube.

Well, one of us finds them hilarious.

Then we took turns getting high, I mean dizzy, spinning on the office chair.

It's raining. I think I'm getting a taste of how I'll be spending my upcoming winter.

Monday, September 04, 2006


Yesterday on our walk, Gideon and I met a daschund named Longfellow. The owner explained the name's double meaning (apparently the dog is both long and loves poetry).

Temperature was in the 70's.

An all around pleasant day.

PF Potvin at MiPO

This Week at No Tell

AnnMarie Eldon is bound by her lovemouth profanities this week at No Tell Motel.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Why? Because . . .

. . . Molly Arden Says So

Ocho 5

That is Grace Cavalieri gracing the cover and inside las paginas of OCHO......

In this issue poems by:


Misc vacation pictures not taken by me since I forgot to pack my camera


More blogging on Saturday.

Pictures from Burlesque are up.