14 July, 2009

some emails from 4 years ago

Scott DeKatch to Kristy
18/06/2005

did you pay CJ $20 to appear in this? he emailed me that the $20 would be mandatory this year.
Reply Forward
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Kristy Bowen: Seriously? WTF?...
I emailed him back the day he sent out the call and said I was in, but nothing about paying the $20....I was going to anyway, just to support the thing, but if that's the case.
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From : C. J. Laity
Sent : Saturday, June 18, 2005 9:38 AM
To : Scott DeKatch
Subject : RE: ATTENTION: 2005 CHICAGO POETRY FEST BOOKING
Hi Scott. In order so that I don't lose my shirt again this year on the fest the $20 anthology donation is required of all poets who want to participate. I'll put your name down on the pending list. Send me a poem w/ the donation asap as the slots are disappearing fast. --cj

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Kristy Bowen:
oh boy, this is going to be ugly.... I just sent an e-mail to CJ withdrawing my participation. It's just so WRONG. I was more than willing to cough up the 20 bucks, but the whole pay to play thing is a little slimey....at least for a reading. What we'll end up with is a whole bunch of poets who payed the 20, not because they are good and were chosen for the fest based on that, but because they paid.
I’m seriously hoping he'll just quietly take me out of the line-up. Either that or there'll be an entire juvenile article on the website trashing me in a couple days. Hopefully, outside of attacking my mother or something, he doesn't have anything on me..
And I can't be the only one who's told him where to go..

Kristy Bowen to me

Fuck, here we go....Here was the response I got...we may BOTH be in for the wrath...

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Kristy,

Please share this letter with whoever is concerned.

Your letter simply makes me sad.

I think of the fest more as joint venture among the poets. If we all chip in the $20 we can buy some advertising and cover the expenses of something this major. It is not fair that some poets chip in, and others don't, when all the poets take advantage of the fest.
The use of the word "required" or the _expression "lose my shirt" was only sent in one email to one poet, Scott DeKatch, so I'm assuming that this email was somehow shared with you and possibly with others. I am utterly disappointed that Scott did that. I have done nothing but support Scott DeKatch and his work, so for him to make a big deal out of a lousy $20 is to me, well, pretty damn icky.
I also feel rather let down that you will not appear out of protest. In order to make the fest a success I'm asking the poets to chip in this one time. So far nobody else has complained. You consider this "pay to play" but I think that is a rather unfair accusation that you are making. I do more "free" work than anybody in the poetry community. I did not get paid for my work with the Printers Row Book Fair. I do not get paid for all my work with ChicagoPoetry.com. I am constantly promoting other people's shows and books. Many times others make money off of my work, but I don't. That you or others have decided to make a big deal this one time that I am forced to seek funding from the participants, is again, extremely disappointing.

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Kristy Bowen:
He claims that no one else has a problem, and yet, I recall another e-mail asking (practically begging) for features that went out a few days after the initial one..perhaps the glut of people he was expecting wasn't quite as large as he initially assumed....and why would it be, who pays to read for gods' sake?

3 comments:

chicagopoetry said...

And yet 80 people paid!!! Not shitty poets that were reading only because they paid, good poets, the same poets that appeared for the fest every year. Here is is 4 years later and you are STILL bitching about that $20. Nothing at all in your posting suggests I "extored" anyone as you falsely claim. All it shows is that you and Bowen were acting like total jerks behind my back while I was frantic trying to put together a big poetry fest.

-sed said...

Hmm, how about emailing me there is a "required" fee and then telling Kristy you only used language like "losing my shirt" and "required" when communicating with me?

All I did was ask her if you'd hit her up for $20. What, I have no right to discuss such things with any of my friends?

I'm not bitching about anything. I'm just sharing my experience.

chicagopoetry said...

We can go back and forth on this, but it is silly. I didn't try to extort you. Yes, there was a "required" $20 that year. 80 people paid it, good poets paid it because they supported th epoetry fest. If you recall, that was the year I was going through a bad break up and yes, I admit, my mental state of mind at that moment wasn't exactly level. So if I sent you an email that was perhaps off color or that seemed harassing, I'm sorry, and I do mean that. But to hang on to those couple of emails and pull them out four years later to prove some point that I'm the evil boogyman who "extorts" people, it's just pointless and silly. I think you just took what I said wrong. I was just under pressure trying to put on a big poetry fest while going through a break up. Maybe I was a little paranoid, if so, again, I'm sorry. Why linger on that for four years?