Sunday, July 31, 2011

fall sneak peak

fall preview

As much as I love warm weather and hate winter, once we get to the dog days of august, I tend to start thinking in terms of fall wardrobe things and crisp, cooler days. Summers usually only necessitate a few dress purchases, but most of what I wear I wear all year long (adding or subtacting tights and sweaters and layers in the winter) but I'm always on the lookout for cozy knits when it cools down. I am also in seach of a tweed a-line skirt that hits the knee and a new tote or messenger bag, preferably a nice chocolatey leather.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

13 things I am loving

key lime pie
trashy mystery/horror novels
strawberry mint linen spray
glaceau vitamin water
new poem projects
sticker books
blanket forts
thunderstorms after midnight
creative misreadings
monte christos
70's rock
the camera on my new (to me) phone
vintage chenille bedspreads

Monday, July 25, 2011

polyanna cowgirl*

Every once in a while I encounter a situation in which I am trying to explain my romantic life to someone (or moreso, to explain why I've chosen a path that's a bit different from the traditional ones of monogamy or marriage, or at the very least, serial monogamy.) It's a weird place to be and sometimes it's hard to explain it without sounding like I'm just some sort of commitment-phobe (of course I also say this is why I've never gotten a tattoo). I recently stumbled on this article, which probably lays it out very well, at least the circumstances if not the reasons.

The reasons themselves are sort of layered and overlapping, alot of it rooted in just being, by nature, sort of an introverted loner who likes to spend (needs to spend) a good amount of time alone, for both my sanity and my creative energies. While I get a great amount of happiness from the people I have been involved with over the years (well, most of them, however intense the relationship), I start to get that weird smothered feeling if I feel them encroaching too much on my time or space, no matter how fond I might be of spending time with them otherwise. Luckily I'm usually pretty honest about this from the get go. I've tended toward longish entanglements in the past, all of which move along various scales of intensity and involvement, as well as various levels of emotional drama and involvement (the R fiasco, for example trotted alongside a pretty functional entanglement with someone else it's entire duration, which continues currently. Or moreso the drama of the former was soothed a little by the relative stability of the other.) I never know what to call these things, they are maybe something less than "relationships" but more than "friendships" obviously (I usually jokingly divide my friends up into camps--work friends, poetry friends, art friends, sexy friends.)

About 10 years ago, I would have been entirely too insecure and jealous to accept the possibilty of my lovers having other lovers (even committed poly partners aware of the situation ), but in the intervening years, I've let go of alot of those feelings, or at least tried to examine them and not let them rule me. A friend (yes, sometimes a sexy friend though not as much recently) probably put it best when he proposed the implausibility of one person being absolutely everything to another, and if not, then you had two choices, either give up on those things, those needs your partner cannot meet, OR accept other people into your life as well, whether they be relationships with a sexual element or even without.

I think somehow, it was all a little freeing, that lack of pressure. I think from early on, we're told to expect relationships to follow a strictly linear trajectory, but I've learned to see them more as circles, sometimes self-contained, sometimes overlapping. And in those circles, there seems to be more room for breathing, more room to move. I've also always hated the idea of serial monagamy, of trading one person for another, of effectively removing that person from your life simply because there is someone else more interesting at the moment. Relationships, no matter how committed or emotionally intense, go through cycles. Even platonic friendhsips go through cycles. So many people bolt on the low point when otherwise there might be reasons to stay together. It's also amazingly nice to be relieved (mostly) of the jealousies and insecurities that typically plague monogamous relationships.

I think, too, that these days it's more about spending time with people, enjoying that time, no matter what it entails, whether sexy friends or strictly platonic ones, and not to be always moving toward some blurry point on the horizon, or all those things the fairytales or Hollywood say we should.

*incidently this was a term I was hesitant to embrace for awhile, "poly" which seemed to have more to do with couples and shared partnerships rather than a more open interpretation. I'm not sure I like labels of any kind, but that teminology comes closest to where my head is at these days...

Sunday, July 24, 2011

summer envy


summer by wickedpen featuring a slip dress

One thing I miss about living in the country is a good amount of outdoor space. Perhaps a huge front porch perfect for iced tea drinking, lounging, and maybe some comfy reading...Luckily I'm blessed with a close proximity to the lake and beach, all sorts of park, but I'd love an outdoor space a little closer to home...

Saturday, July 23, 2011

mixtape love : the 70s

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So I've been listening to some old 70s stuff, the sort of songs I have this weird preternatural, almost non-verbal, affinity for, odd since I was probably under/around 5 years old or so when they were popular. These are the songs my older cousins blasted in my grandma's Suburban when they got radio control, things my mom listened to on her record player in the living rooom, or just random Top 40 radio fare. While my 80's choices would be as much dictated by the music videos for any given song and my own burgeoning choices in what I wanted to listen to, these are just sort of background things that caught my attention, and/or songs I later came to love. (I also might be fudging on the 79/80 line for the Blondie song..)


Friday, July 22, 2011

In between some minor blown out of proportion niggling worries about the mundane, there is the flipside of a certain amount of euphoria about the good things happening in my life. Sometimes I have to pinch myself because I get too happy and excited about things, even if there is always that undercurrent of anxiety present. It's mostly about decisions, to go one way or another, to live one way or another, to let things be or to push them into happening. A constant asking myself what I want but then changing my mind 5 minutes later. The risks are easy, but it's the uncertainty toward outcome that makes me crazy. There are some constants, though, things I am certain about (the press and what we publish, my art and poems, where I live, certain neccessary little pleasures.) But even my happiness in these is always a little uneasy, a little too "knock on wood" for my liking. And yet sometimes I get caught up in the amazingness enough to ignore that undercurrent. Hoping for more of those moments...

Thursday, July 21, 2011

new titles from dancing girl press

Small Hollering
Jamie Kazay
dancing girl press, 2011
order here

Jamie Kazay was born in Hollywood, and grew-up in Pasadena, California. She relocated to Chicago for graduate school in 2005. She holds a BA in English and Creative Writing from California State University, Northridge and an MFA in Poetry from Columbia College, where she teaches writing. Her poems have appeared in Northridge Review, Wicked Alice, Columbia Poetry Review, and elsewhere. She is the Development Manager at Alcuin Montessori School, and enjoys researching Virginia Woolf.

Great America
Trina Burke
dancing girl press, 2011
order here

Trina Burke’s poems have appeared recently in Drunken Boat, Word /for Word, Fawlt, Prick of the Spindle, The Iron Horse Review, and Quarterly West. She received an MFA in poetry from the University of Montana and an MA in English from Western Washington University.

The Dictators' Guide to Good Housekeeping
Valerie Wallace
dancing girl press, 2011
order here

Valerie Wallace‘s poems appear most recently in Waccamaw, Margie, Potomac, Valparaiso Review, and Santa Clara Review. She received awards from the Illinois Arts Council and Illinois Center for the Book, and fellowships from Writers in the Heartland and Squaw Valley Community of Writers. Valerie works with the Afghan Women’s Writing Project, is an associate editor of RHINO Poetry, and leads poetry workshops throughout Chicago.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Summer has moved in with a vengeance. The best I can do is take a couple cool showers and sleep with the fan on me. Otherwise, I am hiding out in the coolness of the studio and the frigidness of the library and am making swift progress on all the chapbooks and other projects. It's also been a busy past week, full of drunken merriment, beachfront barbecues, and even a reading on Monday, which went very well (and I finally got my hands on an Italian soda, which I have sadly missed). I am full of highs and lows lately, bouncing back and forth on all sorts of things related to love and writing and money and future things, so who knows my temperament one minute to the's too hot to think anyway...

Sunday, July 17, 2011

dgp subscription campaign....

2011 has been an amazing year so far, and we continue to release so many amazing titles by the most amazing female poets writing today. Since most of our resources have been going into our regular publications, we have been holding off moving forward on our Arcana project, a limited edition deck of tarot cards designed by an awesome array of writers and artists. Since it is a job that involves professional printing, it of course, involves a little more cash than we have on hand. For a limited time, in order to kickoff production of this project, we will be offering full and partial subsciptions for a mere $100 ($50 for half). Get all of our published titles from the 2011-2012 season, including Arcana, for this great low price and know that we are embarking on this project with your help and generosity...

click here to buy:


Saturday, July 16, 2011

where my head is at these days

I always find myself surprised by how I never quite feel like a grown up. Part of it is that though I do conform to most of the criteria, I still feel a little like my basic moods and temperaments were set in stone in my early twenties and kind of stayed there. As I push further and further into my 30's though, I keep thinking that one day I'll wake up and feel like I have things figured out. Since alot of my friends and people I work with, tend to be younger than me, there's also this feeling of suspended time, which is actually really awesome, but always weirds me out a little when I meet people my age who have very different sorts of lives (ie mortgages, teenagers, retirement accounts. etc). Add in the fact that creative people in general tend to be immersed in a different sort of suspension. But I came the realization a while back that there is definitely something very different about the mid-thirties me from the early twenties me, which is mostly that I'm a heck of a lot braver these days, whether it's taking chances, putting everything out there, making hard decisions on everything from personal matters to creative ones. There's not as much fear anymore, that I will make a fool out of myself, that I'll fail, that things won't work out. Not to say I don't occasionally fall on my ass(obviously), but more and more I'm willing to weigh pitfalls and outcomes and just go with it.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

new from dancing girl press

Planetary Mass
Kat Dixon
dancing girl press, 2011
available here

Kat Dixon is poetry editor of Divine Dirt Quarterly and author of Kississippi (an e-chap from Gold Wake Press). Her work has recently appeared or is forthcoming in blossombones, Indefinite Space, Otoliths, Clockwise Cat, and elsewhere.


Due to a couple of different factors, I've decided that it's a go with the open reading period this year, despite the fact that I initially said there wouldn't be one til next summer. Since in general, I am trying to disentangle myself from doing wholesale orders (too much work for miniscule profit), I find I have extra time in the studio for making books (in the time it takes me to wrap 200 bars of soap, I can make 100 chapbooks, which is both more fun and less soapy). Not only will we be caught up by the end of summer, but we may even be slightly ahead of schedule heading into early next year. Since I only have books lined up for the first half of 2012, I figure opening up again will fill up the rest of the year now. I hate the idea of losing possible awesome work simply becuase we didn't host a reading period at all this year. It will only be the entire month of August this time instead of the whole summer, but hopefully it will bring some good things our way to round off the year.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Saturday, July 09, 2011

new from dancing girl press

Elective Affinities
Kara Dorris
dancing girl press, 2011
order here

In 2009, Kara Dorris graduated from New Mexico State University with an MFA in creative writing poetry. Her work has appeared in The Tusculum Review, Stirring, ListenLight, Not Just Air, Wicked Alice, Prick of the Spindle, Parcel, and Skidrow Penthouse among others literary journals.


One of my favorite new online addictions is pinterest, which works so much more effectively than having random bookmarks all over the place of things I want to buy, style inspirations, decorating & wardrobe ideas, etc.

Summer is in full swing now and I am trying my best to squeeze every bit of enjoyment out of it and not work too much..last night I had planned to spend the entire afternoon and evening working, but opted for working all afternoon in the studio and then an evening out with friends downtown, which was fun and left me feeling less ragged and workaholic. It's a difficult balance, to have a life that is built around the fun stuff, the art & poetry stuff (which is so very awesome), but also trying to remember that I do need something of a life outside of it, I guess in other words that all work and no play makes Kristy a very stressed out and dull girl.

This weekend I am mostly holing up and working on some poems, doing some cleaning, and sleeping ever so blissfully late.

Thursday, July 07, 2011

new from dancing girl press

Birds of Tokyo
Nicole Steinberg
dancing girl press, 2011
$7.00 (includes S&H)
order here

Nicole Steinberg is an editor-at-large of LIT and the founder and curator of Earshot, a NYC reading series dedicated to emerging writers. Her writing appears in publications such as BOMB, No Tell Motel, Eleven Eleven, Barrow Street and Barrelhouse. She is the editor of a literary anthology, Forgotten Borough: Writers Come to Terms with Queens, to be published by SUNY Press in 2011. She hails from Queens, NY and currently lives in Philadelphia.

Wednesday, July 06, 2011


I hereby name the rest of the summer as chapbookpalooza, since I am once again attempting catch completely up my publication schedule, which not only includes the remaining chaps from the 2010 /2011 season, but the beginnings of the 2011/2012 slate which was officially supposed to kick off in May (and now it's more like early August.) The result is that I will be releasing something new every couple of days for the next month or so, so get ready. Most of these have been in some state of completion since April when I went on a layout frenzy, but pulling everything together, galleys proofed, cover art, putting in paper orders, various printing woes, have made it a longer than anticipated feat. I will be spending a few extra hours in the studio the next month, both catching up on orders and assembling books like a madwoman. In addition to the regular chaps, I also want to get the arcana project on it's way to production. Printers Ball is coming up and I'm thinking I might make our swag contribution something tied in with that. Also my landscape / architecture project needs to be finalized. There are a couple other things on the board that may surface. My head is filled with so many ideas it's become increasingly frustrating to hold off running with them.

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

mosaic maker fun

new from dancing girl press

In the Madame's Hat Box
Stephanie Berger
dancing girl press, 2011
order here

Stephanie Berger received her MFA in Creative Writing from The New School and her BA in Philosophy from the University of Southern California. Her poems have appeared most recently in Coconut, HoboEye and pax americana. She is “The Madame” and Artistic Director of The Poetry Brothel (

fresh look

And because one bout of tinkering with html always inevitably leads to more tinkering, the main dgp directory has a fresh new look. The layout is the same as I set up back in November, but the images are tweaked. I started with a few adjustments on my personal site since I fell in love with the rabbit photo I took in the garden and wanted to use it. I liked the look so much, I incorporated the design into the dgp main page as well. I adore the grainy, faded, vintage feel to the photos..

Monday, July 04, 2011

new old things

I'm always looking for better ways to manage web content and am thinking about hosting most of my art images on flickr instead of on individual pages of my main website. I've had the flickr account for awhile for random photos, but it just seems to look better and more professional than my shoddy html skills can manage. I will be moving stuff over slowly, but I experimented first with some old photos taken about 8 years ago with a cheapie little black & white disposable cam (back in the days before I could afford a digital one.) There are actually still a couple that never made it to the scanner, but they make a nice little collection. When they were developed apparently there may have been either damage to the film itself or an error in processing, so there are some cool coloring and fades going on. I particularly love how sharp things are in the background (particularly this one and this one..)I've used a couple for wicked alice covers in the past, and thought about offering prints/postcards in the shop at one point, but since they were just 3 x 5's originally, I worry about reproducing them.

Saturday, July 02, 2011

a day in fragments

One of the most delightful things about ye old homestead is the amount of outdoor space, over an acre, to take advantage of. There are three houses on the property now which was split among family, but once it was just my grandmother's little red house with a giant tree swing and strawberry fields stretching to the back. Alot of it has been landscaped now into yards and decks and koi ponds, but there's still something a little wild about it...

Friday, July 01, 2011

I am thrilled to have some poems in the latest issue of Requited, along with all sorts of excellent poetry, fiction, essay, and art (including one of my faves Alexis Mackenzie..)