The official weblog of the little-poetry-press-that-could, Plan B Press. Specializing in chapbooks, we have published of over 40 books from authors both local and international.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Loving and Hating Apple

For two days I had been trying to telephone our Apple store to find out how our computer repair was going. Busy signals. beep - beep -beep... Since I had been told that they anticipated the part coming in on Tuesday, I figured Tuesday night would be a reasonable update day. Busy signal. How about Wednesday? Busy signal. Off to the Apple store we drove on Wednesday night. I made my way back to the Genius Bar where a perky concierge greeted me. I asked for a status update and she went into the back room to ask around. Meanwhile Steve and the kids are browsing laptops and walking loops in the stroller.

A few minutes later, Perky Concierge comes back to inform me (wearing her best saddened newscaster face) that the part hasn't come in yet. Then she smiles. This isn't smiling time. This is commiserating time. I've been without a computer for nearly two weeks now and she's smiling at me. No - beaming at me.

I knot my brow. "Well, when do you think you'll get the part?" Perky shrugs... and smiles. This is not an oopsie moment, Perky! Then she suggests that I call back for an update on Friday, adding that she hopes the phones are working by then. Friday? Call back Friday? Perky has no idea at all when the part will come in or when it will be installed or when the tests will be run. She's a concierge, a salesperson essentially. I understand that. I'm not expecting the world here.

I had been very happy with Apple's support up until recently. When everything seems to have died in my Mac all at once, all of the tech people I dealt with were responsive and provided updates, walking me through the process. Unfortunately, It seems that the Apply Way is to fix parts one at a time, and every part that is in my computer seems to need to be special ordered. If Mac Stores are many Apple users' lifeline for technical problems, you would think that they would carry some parts. I guess they only keep parts for their newest gadgets... you know, the ones that probably aren't breaking down yet.

I met Steve in the doorway and broke the bad news. He shouts, "What the fuck!" I suggest to him that we just leave before he screams at one of the employees. We walk out the door with our kids, the smoke curling off of Steve's head. Perky Concierge II smiles and waves, "Have a good night, guys!"

This is not a good night, Perky.

You are not Mary Tyler Moore, turning the world on with your smile.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Technical Difficulties III

Our little computer is back at the shop as of Sunday morning. It is supposed to be back today, but I've given up plotting a timeline. Needless to say, our entire book production is on hold.

A third printing of Ryan Eckes' book "when i come here" was sent off to the printer on Saturday before our computer decided to freeze on us again. But we haven't been able to make any progress on our spring season books. Luckily, now that the corrected proof is back, Bob Marcacci's "a man floats" should be heading to the printer once we make those edits.

We also bought hand made paper this weekend for Talia Weisz's "When Flying Over Water". And Steve and I were discussing cover ideas for "Congregations". We need to start on the contest winner's book too. But this will all come after we get our little metal dynamo back from Apple. We plan to purchase a laptop soon after so that we can prevent this supreme amount of downtime in the fture.

The upside: all contest winner responses have been sent; and we're spending more time discussing the future of the press, projects, and incorporation details.

Stay tuned...

Friday, April 24, 2009

Technical Difficulties: Update

As we are computer-less at the moment, it's amazing how little we can actually accomplish.

1) No proofs to authors. (in fact no progress on layouts or covers either)
2) No blog posting or website updates
3) No typed correspondence or purchase orders possible

We're back to pen and paper on everything. It's nice in a way to focus on other things. Our trusty Editor is writing responses very quickly on contest entrants now that he is is disconnected from the internet.

The library has proven itself to be a very helpful stopgap. It is free and accessible, but you are booted off after 30 minutes. No questions. No exceptions. Also apparently it's acceptable to talk loudly in a library if you are at the computer terminals. This is news to me. I thought there was still the Quiet Rule in effect at libraries, except for the kids' section where the occupants are literally incapable of staying quiet- especially around others.

So the computer is still at the shop, but we hope to be back up tonight or tomorrow, but I won't place any bets. It is Friday afterall and we're still in a blackout.

Thanks again for your patience.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Technical Difficulties

Well, our Macintosh just died on Sunday. The power supply is kaput. So our local Apple store has ordered the part and should have the working CPU back to us at some point between Wednesday and Friday hopefully.

Unfortunately this means that we're a bit out of commission on orders and general correspondence; although we are doing our best to address thing on a delay. Basically we ask that you be patient with us until we are back on track.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

and we have a winner.....

the winner of the 2009 Plan B Press chapbook contest is -

You Must Not Know Too Much by Chris Bullard (Collingswood, NJ)

congrats to Chris and all the wonderful submissions we received this year!

Thursday, April 02, 2009

updating the contest

2009 seems to have been a stellar year for the submissions to our contest. The readers are beside themselves dealing with so many fantastic manuscripts. Congrats to all who have participated, you will all be notified once the judge makes her decision. I daresay that her job this year will be wonderfully difficult

(better her than I)