Friday, February 27, 2009


this week with a backlog of orders, inane taxes, broken printers and not much chance to update the blog. Things are definitely on the upswing, and today a blissful day off from the library, (since I'm working on Sunday), and I'll be getting everything out hopefully. I have finally, amazingly figured out the taxes yesterday, and will be ordering a new laser printer next week (poor thing just wore out I think, along with my booklet stapler, which I've already replaced with a sleek new long arm number.) Otherwise, I am just muddling through this week, working on the bath goodies. My apartment smells like oranges, the studio like green tea and lavender. I also ordered a new tabletop rack for chapbooks in the studio, since I keep shoving too many in the spinning one and they all fall on the floor everytime I spin it. Plus, I'll be better able to see what needs restocking. We will be having an open studio event in a couple weeks, so I'm trying to tame the chaos and make everything a little more browser friendly. Yesterday was a weird weather day, with alot of fog and ghostly trees with a single bright bunch of balloons caught in their mist.

PS. The newest chaps will be up as soon as I fix the printer issue. I had a few printed for AWP, but can't print anymore until I get the new printer, so am holding off on getting up the webpages. Also author copies are on their way out, as we speak....)

Sunday, February 22, 2009

13 things I am loving

mustard and blue
mustard and blue - by wickedpen on

mustard and blue color combinations
photo booths
the zoo in winter
sea glass
sunday afternoon naps
cashmere cardigans
love letters
dance movies
mango mandarin lotion

Saturday, February 21, 2009


Today was spent uploading a host of new things in the shop, including my last big batch of glasses, new postcards, and some vintage housewares I've been hoarding since Thanksgiving. There is still more to come... I am waiting on another postcard batch from the printers, have other myriad projects (art and jewelry) ready to photograph, and again am feeling overwhelmed, but it will all get done eventually (I hope). I've also been ordering supplies for a new little line of indulgent lovely things, including bath teas and some salts, having learned from less spectacular results last time. (Actually the salts were good and I sold a couple bags, but they kept leaking through the organza and my packaging needed revamping..)This time I'm using chunkier sea salts and tin tie bags, so we shall see..

Otherwise, I am still recovering sleep-wise from the AWP crunch and about two weeks of running nonstop without a day off. it was blissful to wake up this morning and have nothing to do, nowhere to go, no plans whatsoever. I need more days like that. I am hoping to delve into some of my book fair haul, including this and this, both of which I am very excited about. First however, I need to return the pile of books in the living room that had to be removed to pull the entire case away from the wall to rescue the glasses that Bella had knocked behind becuase they'd been sold.(see post below..)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Isabel, who has taken to scaling the dining room bookshelves (and systematically knocking off everything breakable...)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.
- TS Eliot

Monday, February 16, 2009


Much activity afoot, even after the AWP craziness. Saturday, I got to do some tag team reading at Links Hall, which depite my exhaustion and on the verge of just being non-verbal, was a fun and goofy time. Last night, I had a reading at the Orange Alert series with Jason Fisk and James Kennedy (the author of this book, which so reminded me of a cross between The Phantom Tollbooth and my favorite movie ever, Labyrinth, that I had to buy a copy, even though I usually stay far from young adult books (not enough sex and violence, this from a girl who grew up on Dean Koontz-like horror and VC Andrews..) Tonight I am heading over to the Waiting for the Bus series at Jak's Tap (I was supposed to read in December, but was too sick to go.) Tonight, I'll be sharing the bill with Pam Miller, whose work I love...

After that, I think I'll be retreating back into my little hole until I have a couple of events in April..

Sunday, February 15, 2009

writerly - by wickedpen on

thank you

to everyone who stopped by to introduce themselves, to buy books, to chat, and to all the amazing enthusiasm people seem to have for the press, our authors, and what we publish. I am happily exhausted.....

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Friday, February 13, 2009

more poets than you can shake ( or throw) a stick at

okay, so there's only maybe four or five I would actually throw a stick at.. but there is certainly much ado and doing at our little table, and so far, it has been amazing to meet and see so many of our dgp/wicked alice poets and fans (yes, apparently we have fans--squee!), so many people I know only from their blogs, and yes, even the Chicago folks I hardly ever get to see anymore. The books are going over phenomenonaly and at this point, we've recouped the table/registration cost, which is all I was hoping for..and there's still another day, so we may make out like bandits (excellent for funding the little anthology project I have brewing.) Of course that is, if I can keep from spending all the profits at other tables..

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

yet again..

time to head on over to Radish King for the Sylvia Plath Bake-Off. I suck at baking and don't have a kitchen door, so I can only give you a poem..

Fever 103ยบ

Pure? What does it mean?
The tongues of hell
Are dull, dull as the triple

Tongues of dull, fat Cerebus
Who wheezes at the gate. Incapable
Of licking clean

The aguey tendon, the sin, the sin.
The tinder cries.
The indelible smell

Of a snuffed candle!
Love, love, the low smokes roll
From me like Isadora's scarves, I'm in a fright

One scarf will catch and anchor in the wheel.
Such yellow sullen smokes
Make their own element. They will not rise,

But trundle round the globe
Choking the aged and the meek,
The weak

Hothouse baby in its crib,
The ghastly orchid
Hanging its hanging garden in the air,

Devilish leopard!
Radiation turned it white
And killed it in an hour.

Greasing the bodies of adulterers
Like Hiroshima ash and eating in.
The sin. The sin.

Darling, all night
I have been flickering, off, on, off, on.
The sheets grow heavy as a lecher's kiss.

Three days. Three nights.
Lemon water, chicken
Water, water make me retch.

I am too pure for you or anyone.
Your body
Hurts me as the world hurts God. I am a lantern--

My head a moon
Of Japanese paper, my gold beaten skin
Infinitely delicate and infinitely expensive.

Does not my heat astound you. And my light.
All by myself I am a huge camellia
Glowing and coming and going, flush on flush.

I think I am going up,
I think I may rise--
The beads of hot metal fly, and I, love, I

Am a pure acetylene
Attended by roses,

By kisses, by cherubim,
By whatever these pink things mean.
Not you, nor him.

Not him, nor him
(My selves dissolving, old whore petticoats)--
To Paradise.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

pre-AWP roundup

It's funny, I was thinking about 5 years ago, the last time the conference hit town and how terribly overwheming it all was. The staggering whirl of panels, readings, and book fair chaos. For three days straight I was running all over the place with too much to possibly do in such a short span of time. The press itself, was still rather in its imfancy, I had managed only weeks before to put together the copies of Bloody Mary, our trial run, and was carrying it around, should the opportunity to thrust it into someone's hand arise. I was also armed with a bunch of wicked alice postcards I kept rescuing from beneath piles of similar paraphanalia on the catch-all tables (pretty much any available surface). I think I may have even left a couple in the women's restroom. I went to panels on chapbook publishing, blogging, electronic poetry. I weighed myself down with pretty much any freebie I could get my grubby hands on. I was exhausted by the end--too much information, too much inspiration, too many wheels set spinning in my head.

I was also so in awe and so excited at the mere idea of that many writers in one place, loitering in the hotel lobby, filling up the restaurants and bars, waiting on corners with their very recognizeable totebag. It made me feel like part of a profession, like doctors or dentists. Sure, I knew lots of writers, but it always felt for me like some little illegitimate (yet delightful) way of filling ones time, something about as professional as bird watching or fortune telling, and probably as embarassingly forthright as stripping. It was like I was suddenly part of some great, dare I say "professional", wave of practitioners. When I saw a woman on the bus with a totebag I fought the urge strike up a conversation with someone I probably wouldn't have even noticed before, like we were part of a secret club, compatriots in the good fight.

Admittedly, the second I attended in Atlanta, I was bit more seasoned, a little less shell shocked. The press had been around three years, we had published close to 20 books, and were at the point where people were really starting to be interested in what we do.. I knew more people to hang out with, and met so many more people I sorta knew from online dealings. I felt a bit more comfortable in this literary sort of skin, a little less overwhelmed with it all, though it was still a wild, exhausting, very fun ride. (It also helped that I hid behind the book fair table most of the time, stayed away from the panels, and had a defined plan of attack in my book buying spree.)

This year, you'll probably still find me hiding behind the table mostly (754/755 with Featherproof and Switchback Books), and we've published alot (seriously alot!) more books. AND, we have three brand spanking new titles making their debut, including Claire Hero's Cabinet (she will also be doing a little informal signing for us at 2:30-3:30 on Friday), Emma Bolden's The Sad Epistles, and Susan Slaviero's Apocrypha, all of which turned out lovely. We'll be running our 5 books for $20 sale real live and in person, plus, we still have limited edition of billet-doux available for pure Valentines goodness..I will also have copies of in the bird museum in tow for anyone who wants to should stop by...

Monday, February 09, 2009

a little eye candy for the girls (and boys)


Especially in light of the slightly scary, marred post-plastic surgery Rourke in The Wrestler, this photo makes me happy..

Sunday, February 08, 2009

21 things I am loving

weathered windowsills
the color blue
depression glass
old postcards
earl grey tea
Sylvia Plath
acoustic music
italian food
young Mickey Rourke movies
marie antoinette
architecture tours
mary janes
doll parts
mead composition books
roadside motels
colored pencils

Saturday, February 07, 2009

valentines 1
valentines 1 - by wickedpen on
Unless it is mad, passionate, extraordinary love, it’s a waste of time. There are too many mediocre things in life—love should not be one of them.



Today I woke up early and threw open the windows, (well one window, it's still only 40, but if you'd been in Chicago the last three months this is a freaking big deal). I can hear everything dripping and hopefully all the snow on the ground will be gone by evening. Much good mail last night, including another box of Bird Museums, charms for a custom bracelet I'm working on, and a new bunch of flasks I'm not sure what to do with just yet. The tickle in my throat the last three days, though, has turned into a cough which will hopefully be gone by next weekend. I will be reading three nights in a row for various AWP and non-AWP things, and I'm hoping I can do it without hacking my way through them. I swear I sometimes feel like my body is at war with winter, and usually, it loses.

Friday, February 06, 2009

slightly frothy

The last couple of days, I've been literally over overflowing with new ideas for the press and the shop. It's good, since I usually come up with at least one thing that actually works (sometimes more.). But as a result, I spend too much money buying supplies and sometimes it takes months for me to actually get around to the projects. The next week or so is solely devoted to making and printing books, so everything will all have to sit tight for awhile. I'm currently working on some collages on old vintage wooden plaques, as well as some new earrings, but am hoping to get to a weird little box project involving these little broken vintage german dolls & ephemera, some sea glass pendants, and other little message in a bottle jewelry. Also more postcard designs...there might also be a new anthology like project for the press we'll be soliciting work for, but I need to work out the details...

Otherwise I am furiously folding chapbooks, craving chocolate and conversation hearts, and writing letters to someone who seems very far away. This next week is a doozie, though...more details on AWP happenings to come..

Thursday, February 05, 2009


The Provisional Avant-Garde

It won't be called the avant-garde. Instead it will be referred to by various names, all of them precise, like "the society for touching lightly the forearms of another" or "a tendency toward making chains of half-rhymes in a circle with one's friends."...

Tuesday, February 03, 2009


dream sequence
dream sequence - by wickedpen on

tuesday morning freak out

This morning I was laying in bed having a major worry fest about being ready for AWP next week. There are several chapbooks in various stages of completion (Apocrypha, Squint, Sad Epistles, Cabinet, and EMUseum) that I plan to have ready by the conference. There is also restocking copies what we have already published, including some books I am just totally out of completely. (I'm also still getting out the slew of sale orders, which also involved printing up certain titles, thus a slight delay, but they are coming soon..) I am taking a day before the conference off work so I can work all day next Wednesday on these things, so that will hopefully help.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

new in the shop

These actually turned out better than I though they would in terms of image quality after the transer process..

get yours here...