Friday, February 29, 2008

Tragedy averted -- Gideon got into the 2 day program with the church preschool which seems pretty good although not as good and the first choice, but way better than the place we visited this morning. He's also on 2 different waitlists for 3 day programs (my preference). Worst case scenario, I sign his soul over to the Methodists 2 days a week, who I hear are OK and won't damage him much worse than I already have.

Now back to your regularly scheduled my-ass-is-so-big/poetry commentary.

Completely demoralized and it's not even noon. Just toured another preschool and it's really not right for Gideon. The office was completely disorganized and the "tour" wasn't that and the biggest deal is that it's really designed for 5 days a week (they don't separate curriculums for 3 day kids). I don't want Gideon to start out with 5 days a week, I still want some time with him. He can do 5 days for Pre-K next year. So I don't even think I want to put a deposit down at this place which means I have to keep looking and scheduling tours -- and it's really late, and most places are full. I know where I want him to go, but we're waitlisted and likely won't know for sure until this summer.

And I can't believe what a pain in the ass this all is. I don't feel like I'm being that picky.

Update: Another appointment scheduled today at 1 p.m. with a preschool run through a church -- something I was avoiding, but this was recommended by a friend of Chris' and I'm told it's not especially religious. Their 3 day program is full (sigh, another waiting list!), but there's still slots in the 2 day. I'd prefer 3 days, but a 2 day program designed for 2 days -- is better than sending him 3 days to a 5 day program where he's going to miss everything.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Orange Alert!

Jason Behrends interviews me at What to Wear During an Orange Alert:

Do you want to be the asshole who shows up to every Christmas empty-handed and leaves with a bag full of presents? I don't. I pride myself in being a completely different kind of asshole.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Now This is What the Web Markets are all About

"Call me crazy, but I'm totally down with the size of your ass."

Paul Guest, author of Notes for My Body Double, Whiting Recepient, soon-to-be famous memoirist

See, now doesn't that make you want to buy my book?

Buy my book! I worked very hard on it.

At dinner Chris mentioned that he thought he'd be mentioned on NPR because he helped a reporter use Google Earth for a cycling story. I was all like, "They ain't gonna mention you!"

Well, apparently they did.

In my face!

According to Whimsy, the March/April issue of The American Poetry Review is out. Two of my poems are in it. (Both from last year's NaPoWriMo, earlier drafts were temporarily posted here on this very blog.)

I haven't received my contributor copies yet, but suspect they're in the mail.

The disappointing thing is that they didn't ask for my photograph. I guess they don't want to distract readers from all the poetry with my insane good lookingness. Makes sense, I guess.

For the Sake of Clarity

The below post is making fun of my recurring situation of being the "weird lady with goofy ideas regarding the interwebs and self-publishing" at these types of conferences.

While she might be annoying, it's important to once in a while invite your Jell-O obsessed aunt to dinner and endure her pointing out how you're doing everything wrong. Yes, the whole time you're counting the minutes until you can stick her back on a bus for home. But your other choice is going to hell for being neglectful to the old crone, cause no matter what, she's still family.

I am always grateful when these conferences invite me to participate even though they don't really like my Jell-O salad and secretly wish I'd be civilized and instead bake some God damn chocolate chip cookies.

I'm not in any way dissing the conference or anyone involved. I would not participate or promote anything I thought was a waste of time or not valuable. Just because I disagree with someone, driving them into a pooh-flinging rage, does not mean I'm dissing them. I merely disagree. When I'm referred to as the No Tell Ho-tail -- now that's a diss! But nobody has ever called me that. I just made it up to get attention. I'm trying to get your attention. Do I have your attention?

Good, register for the conference.

My babysitter is back and this morning I went to pilates for the first time in what feels like a decade. I'm like a new woman, totally.

And I'm supposed to tell you about the 2nd Annual Conversations and Connections writer's conference held on April 5 at the DC campus of Johns Hopkins University (1717 Mass Ave NW).

There's a big long official spiel about how this conference will make all your dreams come true that they want me to include here, but you can go to the website and get all that. I'm no man's parrot.

What I'm going to do is break it down Rebaroni-style: It's going to be a sold-out conference. A bunch of writers are going to show up wanting to learn the tricks of the trade, how to get published, how to get people to read their work, etc. There's going to be a bunch of publishers who will share advice and ideas based on their experience. It's going to be sound advice. News you can use, as they say.

Then I'm going to participate in the "Web Markets" panel and will talk about sharing your work on your blog, self-publishing and other DIY projects. I'm going to tell people to take control of their own work and not wait around for someone to discover them. I'm going to suggest that writers eschew old-timey conventions, avoid markets that make outlandish demands on what you can do with your own work in your own personal space. I'm going to say that the term "web markets" is passe and just plain dumb, considering that these "markets" are the now the main markets. I'm going to say that anyone who considers web to be ghetto is sooooooooo stoooooopid. Print publishers/editors in the audience are going to take my comments waaaaaaaay too personally and throw animal dung at me. I'm going to contradict many of the other panelists while they do their best to remain very calm and not give me the bitch slapping I so richly deserve. Experts in the audience are going to shout that I'm wrong and correct me. They're going to have anecdotes that may involve the Sylvia Plath estate. Someone is going to turn to the person beside them and ask, "Where they'd find her? In a Cracker Jack box?" I'll hear that and retort, "Hey, my poem was in BAP -- a poem that first appeared on my blog, then at an online magazine and now I'm rich, bitch! So BURN!" Then someone will make a comment about the size of my ass. An unflattering comment about the size of my ass. Later that evening, I will cry myself to sleep. The next day I will write a poem describing my feelings and post it to my blog.

But before all that, I'll also participate in the "Speed Dating" lunch where people will put a poem in front of me and I'll have to come up with something smart to say about it immediately, if I don't pee my pants from the stress of the situation. I didn't participate in that part last year, too much pressure, but I just found out that my press gets $5 for each speed date I have. While I do not profit off others' desire to be published, I find that I am not profiting off of others' (non-existent) desire to buy my press' books. So my press will profit off the grace of my infinite wisdom, likely making up to $50. Do you know how many books I have to sell to make that in royalties? Like a thousand. Well, actually somewhere between 10 and 20, depending on how and where they're sold.

Come to conference! Let us make your publishing dreams come true.

Monday, February 25, 2008

I'm supposed to tell you that I'm a winner.

Chase Twitchell on Copper Canyon Acquiring Ausable Press

"On a final note, I’d like to say something about the future of poetry publishing. Starting a press is something I always wanted to do, but for financial reasons was unable to until new technology made it possible. Nowadays, with print-on-demand (now almost indistinguishable in quality from traditionally-produced paperbacks), and the magic tools of the internet, it’s possible for someone to start a small press for a few thousand dollars. There’s no money in it, of course; it’s a labor of love. It’s my hope that the editors of the future will find in themselves the kind of passion that will make them do something as irrational, irresistible, and fulfilling as the publishing of poetry. The world desperately needs it."

I met Chase at AWP New Orleans, not long after she started Ausable. She told me how she always wanted to start a press and that when she turned 50 it was her time to do so. Now that was back in my 20's, 50 seemed practically ancient (I know better now), and I thought, wow, to have to wait that long to do something one always wanted to do. Well, for some things we do have to wait and for some things, we don't really have to. Luckily for me, advancements in technology allowed me to start my own press in my 30's.

Ausable's aesthetic is pretty different from No Tell Books, but I've always admired the press and what Chase accomplished -- and while I never met her again after New Orleans, she stayed in my thoughts and was one of the inspirations years later when I finally embarked on my own press.

Amy King on Jennifer Bartlett's Derivative of the Moving Image.

This Week at No Tell

Mia Nussbaum struggles to understand an economy based on the manufacture of oyster-shell buttons this week at No Tell Motel.

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Sunday, February 24, 2008

What an educational service Eileen does by sharing her poetry income statement.

I haven't even thought about my taxes yet.

Past Simple 4 is up.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

You Are a Question Mark

You seek knowledge and insight in every form possible. You love learning.

And while you know a lot, you don't act like a know it all. You're open to learning you're wrong.

You ask a lot of questions, collect a lot of data, and always dig deep to find out more.

You're naturally curious and inquisitive. You jump to ask a question when the opportunity arises.

Your friends see you as interesting, insightful, and thought provoking.

(But they're not always up for the intense inquisitions that you love!)

You excel in: Higher education

You get along best with: The Comma

Friday, February 22, 2008

Sorry, I've been too busy to post much here lately, hopefully that'll change when Chris gets back. I'm starting work on Karl Parker's Personations. I'm pretty excited about that -- most of you haven't heard of him and this book will knock your lacy socks right off. After that's done I'm doing celebrity blogger Rebecca Loudon's Cadaver Dogs. That's all the titles from No Tell Books in 2008.

For 2009 I'm co-editing an anthology with nerd-chic Charlie Jensen (more details about that to come in the not too distant future). I'm also very seriously considering a manuscript by a current No Tell Books author for early 2009. I think that's all I'm doing for 2009 as well. Maybe I'll publish my second book with No Tell Books too, if it's finished and if Coconut Books doesn't cough up my six figure advance. Your Ten Favorite Words is selling trillions and I haven't seen a dime and I just heard Bruce Covey bought a medium-sized island off the the coast of Atlanta. Hmmm . . .

Anyhow, I can't maintain publishing 5 books a year, it's making me loopy, it's cutting too much into my own writing -- which lately has been non-existent because all my "not publishing other people" time and my "hassling Bruce Covey for my god damn money" time goes to Gideon. It's making me really cranky too. I don't need editors, assitants or interns to manage and cause me more work, I need to to cut back. Maybe in 2010 when Gideon is in full-time school I'll be able to ramp it up again. Or maybe I'll be greedy and use all that extra time for my own books.

Below are some links to new issues put together by people (many of whom are also raising children) spending a lot of time publishing other poets (and getting skunky rich!) as well. Check them out.

Drunken Boat

Action Yes

Wicked Alice

The Scrambler

Caffeine Destiny



Now excuse me, Gideon's getting a bath and then we're picking up his daddy at the airport.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

This afternoon I spent an unnecessarily long time explaining to Gideon that what was in his diaper is called poop and not, as he so adamantly insisted, shit.

There's only a handful of words he can say clearly enough that people can understand -- and one of them is now shit.

I'm blaming this on last week's guys' ski house.

Tomorrow this kid is getting shipped to the convent.

Desperate situations, cruel solutions. That's my motto.

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Monday, February 18, 2008

From now on No Tell Motel's reading period will be during the months of May and October. Those are the only two months we'll consider unsolicited submissions.

Back home -- which means back to work, if you're expecting something from me, I'm working on it.

Message on the machine informing that Gideon has been waitlisted for our first choice in preschool, but he has a "good" number. Will call tomorrow and try to gauge how likely the chance of him getting in. Sigh.

And remembered that I forgot to drop my car off at the shop before we left for CA. Double sigh.

This Week at No Tell

John Murillo catches a shaft of curtain-cut neon this week at No Tell Motel.

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Saturday, February 16, 2008

Gideon Monster Turns 3

Today is Gideon's 3rd birthday. To celebrate we're driving from Tahoe to San Jose in a couple hours. This morning he got a bath and ran around the hotel in his birthday suit. Gideon and I fly home Sunday night. I don't know how we're going to match this year with next. He had such a good week.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Another thing I've been doing today is analyzing this dream -- which I decided is incredibly positive:

It's night and I'm walking into the Giant (grocery store). A grocery cart with a small baby careens out of control. I stop the cart and look around for whoever is responsible for the baby, but nobody seems to pay any attention. I stop other shoppers and employees to inquire, but nobody knows who he belongs to. I remember I saw this baby before, falling off the cashier's conveyor belt the last time I shopped there. I leave the baby with the store employees while I go inside to buy some formula for him. While I find some discarded, half-used, very questionable formula containers scattered around, I can't find the baby product isle. I ask a store employee for help, but she tries to sell me pet flea spray. I become very frustrated with her. I tell her a baby is starving and this is a serious matter. My Uncle Marty walks into the store with Chris. He sees me holding the baby and says he knows its not mine. I consider the possibility of making this baby part of my family. I ask Chris to find formula and he comes back with the discarded, questionable formula I saw during my search. I get angry with Chris, tell him there's no way we could possibly feed a baby that. Then I remember I have some sample formula upstairs in my grandmother's attic. I find it, along with a bottle and go downstairs and outside to finally feed the baby. But when I get there, it's daylight and the baby is gone. Where I left him is covered with manholes. I panic and look inside the holes. In one I see a body of a person, in another a dog's body and in the third I see the baby, who is now a white cat. I fear the cat is dead, but she's not, she opens her eyes and begins to move. I'm very relieved.

After three days of lessons, Gideon still needs to work on his wedge. Today he stayed at the house making cupcakes with me while Chris skied with the guys. I imagine their afternoon is one continuous fart joke. Did I mention I'm staying in a house full of dudes? Yes, I think I did. So consider this my reiteration of staying in a house full of dudes. God, what I would give to be at a Lilith festival right now listening to some granola woman talk about the empowerment of her period. Speak it, sister!

Anyhow, Gideon and I made strawberry goldbloom cupcakes with vanilla icing. There's jimmies all over the place, but not for long, the dog is eating them off the floor. Cause he's a dude.


Happy Valentine's

Over the past 24 hours, there's been a bit of traffic at Reb's Tips for Valentine Success (circa 2006). It's classic, universal advice still pertinent today.

What am I doing this Valentine's Day?

What I do every Valentine's.

Declare my unwavering love and devotion to Jeff Goldblum.

My love and devotion to Jeff Goldblum does not waver.

Have you seen Pittsburgh?

It's really good.

If I ever have another son (don't worry, I'm not), I'd name him Goldblum, but I'd spell it Goldbloom, so Jeff Goldblum couldn't sue or file stalking charges.


Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Ski Bunny

Monday, February 11, 2008

Sundress' 2007 Best of the Net

can be read here.

Derek Pollard's "If You Were To Die Right Now, Johnny Depp" and Charles Jensen's "Bargaining" were selected.

Also, Betsy Wheeler's "Reply to an Invitation to a Luncheon" and Micki Myers' "Long Ago And Oh, So Far Away" were finalists.

Go No Tell, go No Tell, go.

Yesterday we flew to SFO, then drove to Tahoe.

There's a reason we didn't fly directly to Reno/Tahoe.

The reason being free tickets.

There's a thousand feet of snow on the ground.

Spent the night unsuccessfully gambling with college pal, Greg.

Kept saying, We can't stop playing this game, it's doctor-poet recommended!

I punched Greg every time his birthday didn't come up in roulette.

Greg begged me to stop playing his birthday.

Afterward Greg and I had a difficult time finding the house because all the street signs are under snow.

We called it the Night of Defeat.

I called it the Night of Defeat.

Greg argued that since we did eventually find the house, we weren't truly defeated.

Spent the morning arguing with Gideon over the need for layers.

The idea of wearing two pairs of pants offends his sensibilities.

It doesn't help that one of the guys we're sharing this house with is prancing around in his shorts.

I'm staying in a house full of dudes.

Even the dog is a dude.

The dog's name is Tucker.

I am not going to the mountain today.

Or tomorrow.

Or Wednesday, or Thursday or Friday.

Today I'm staying bed, reading and writing.

It's what I'll do tomorrow.

And Wednesday, and Thursday and Friday.

I'm wearing the fuzzy purple socks Phatback gave me for Christmas.

This Week at No Tell

Dan Pinkerton messes with nighttime dental hygiene this week at No Tell Motel.

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Saturday, February 09, 2008

Headed to bed in a few because we're leaving for the airport before dawn. My plans this week are reading, writing and slotting -- so if I'm slow to respond or just plain ignoring you, know that casinos have stronger allure than you.

Valentine's Comes Early for Me

Now I'm just bragging, I know, I know.

Early Birthday Present

Happy morning at the Livingston-Morrow abode!

Since we're leaving for Tahoe tomorrow morning, we decided to give Gideon his birthday gift early (so he can use it on the trip). His own working, Internet connected laptop! We participated in the Give One/Get One program, where we could purchase one for Gideon if we purchased another for a child in a developing country. I think they're done offering laptops to yuppies for the time being, the only option now is to straight out donate (which we'll do now that we've seen how awesome this laptop really is).

Seriously, it's all giggles and kisses today.

"Omigod, Mommy's blog is so embarrassing!"

New at Delirious Hem

DIM SUM: Being several & a few responses to the trio of "Numbers Trouble" articles in last fall's Chicago Review

Organized by Elizabeth Treadwell

with work from

Esther Belin
Susan Briante
David Buuck*
C.A. Conrad
Michelle Detorie
Tonya Foster & Evie Shockley*
Rachel Levitsky*
Joyelle McSweeney
Sina Queyras
Linda Russo
Sandra Simonds
Elizabeth Treadwell
Catherine Wagner

*to be added shortly


Friday, February 08, 2008

Rump: It's what's for dinner

I got discriminating-taster Gideon to eat a nutrigrain bar by telling him it was a monkey's butt.

He just asked for more.

I'm so innovative!

Insider Poets

Matt Dillon in his underwear: the highlight of my pre-teen years. Move over Ralph Macchio.

I never met a poet who doesn't feel like an outsider -- including the "famous" published, anthologized, tenured ones.

Except me, baby. I'm in.

Crowe is is too pasty in The Insider. I can't post that shit here. Nobody's gonna relate to that.

Best American Poetry has a blog.

Today's guest blogger is Denise Duhamel.

Jill Alexander Essbaum will guest blog there on February 10. Don't forget, Jill is still the guest poet at

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Oh and Happy Year of the Rat. I'm a Rat, like fellow blogger Tony Robinson (one of the first things we bonded over -- Rats are so misunderstood!). Also, I married a Rat.

I assumed this would be our year to rool, but no:

The year of the Rat should be a cautious one for Rats, who may find the year is a mixed bag for them. The year is most favorable for Career-related endeavors - the General Star and Tang Fu star that are present in the Rat's Life Palace indicate opportunities for career advancement such as a promotion, a pay rise or an increase in responsibilities. However, this will not fall into your lap - you will have to go all out to secure your own advancement.

There are three negative stars in the Rat's Life Palace this year, specifically the Sword Edge Star, the Fly Blade Star and the Hidden Door Star. These stars indicate personal injury and accidents - thus, it is wise to exercise extra precaution on the sports field, and also whilst traveling. If you work in a job with a high level of occupational hazard, such as handling sharp weapons or machinery, it is wise to be extra cautious.

Western, Vedic, Chinese -- I can't catch a break with any astrology. So this year I'm gonna focus on numerology. My numbers are considerably better.

"Art is a classy bitch."

-- Jill Alexander Essbaum

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Jill Alexander Essbaum is up at 42Opus.

Gideon's and my tastes in both books and now cartoons continue to diverge. I wanna watch SpongeBob or Wow Wow Wubbzy. But no, it's more Pinky Dinky Do. Pinky Dinky Fucking Do.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Jason Behrends writes about Your Ten Favorite Words at What to Wear During an Orange Alert.

"Your Ten Favorite Words" is collections of poems full of life, for better or worse. Reb seems to both the better and worse in life with clarity and at times aggression. You she does not simply dabble in love, hate, poetry, and so on, she lunges straight at the heart of the issues without thought consequence. Above all else this is a collection of strength, "something inside must climb and crinkle" (from My Lover Never), she illustrates that in spite of everything that may go wrong we must continue to climb.

Oh and there's something up with my Goodreads account for the past week -- every time I go there, it signs me up as someone else. Sometimes I'm a Sonia or a Ginger. Sometimes people I did not approve (and who I'm pretty sure didn't ask to be my friend) are suddenly friends.

Chris believes they have a "cross-site-scripting vulnerability" so I'm gonna write them and ask what's up.

And for the record, I did not add Sexy Beast IV to my "To Read" list -- although it seems highly recommended.

Spent the morning trying to assemble a car race track from Christmas. Nothing like being defeated by a box of plastic.

Monday, February 04, 2008

The pageant was magical, traded and bought some great books and it's always good to spend time with friends. But I don't need AWP for that and I'm glad I didn't pay the registration fee. Next year I think I'll attend the Associated Cow Tipping Festival instead. I'm writing my panel proposal now.


Start Here by Betsy Wheeler (Small Anchor Press)

Pioneers in the Study of Motion by Susan Briante (Ahsahta Press)

F2F by Janet Holmes (University of Notre Dame Press)

This Many Miles from Desire by Lee Herrick (WordTech Editions)

Holy Land by Rauan Klassnik (Black Ocean)

An Architecture by Chad Sweeney (BlazeVOX)

Document by Ana Bozicevic-Bowling (Octopus Books)
Undersleep by Julie Doxsee (Octopus Books)

Figures for a Darkroom Voice by Noah Eli Gordon and Joshua Marie Wilkinson (Tarpaulin Sky Press)

The Nines by Christian Peete (Palm Press)

Notes for My Body Double by Paul Guest (Bison Books)

Ryan Seacrest is Famous Stories by Dave Housley (Impetus Press)

Panthenon West Review (Issue 5)
Barrelhosue (Issue 5)
Canarium (Issue 1)


This Week at No Tell

Scott Abels can no longer hold the story this week at No Tell Motel.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

And the Winner Is . . .

2nd Runner-up, Sueyeun Juliette Lee, Miss That Gorgeous Feeling

1st Runner-up, Jennifer L. Knox, Miss Drunk by Noon

Winner! Jill Alexander Essbaum, Miss Micropress Poetry 2008
Miss The Attention Lesson is so very happy for her!

Micropress Poetry Pageant Poetrywear Competition

Micropress Poetry Snowsuit Competition

Micropress Poetry Pageant Talent Competition

Shafer Hall, Miss Never Cry Woof

Hugh Behm-Steinberg, Miss Shy Green Fields

Jill Alexander Essbaum, Miss Harlot

Jennifer L. Knox, Miss Drunk by Noon

Sueyeun Juliette Lee, Miss That Gorgeous Feeling

Danielle Pafunda, Miss My Zorba

PF Potvin, Miss The Attention Lesson