Since getting back from BC I've been following the Stacey Lynn Brown/Cider Press Review poetry drama here. I don't know any of these people personally. But reading the posts and emails -- and looking at it from the perspective of someone who has been both a small press poetry editor and a winner of a poetry manuscript competition -- it seems like it was a toxic mix of a poet over-involved in the details of the production of her book (needing to control the blurbs and the cover image and the presence of an author photo or not, etc) and a press that was not willing to compromise or listen to reason.
What is lost in this, to me, is the poems. What were they about? I really want to know! Did any of this have any real effect on the poems? Or was it just an argument about their packaging? Was it just a series of misunderstandings about a table of contents and an author photo and some wording of blurbs? Or was it more than that?
It's fascinating theater. Perhaps a bit of a tempest in the poetry teapot? But it's all we've got, I guess, as poets. We give ourselves to our work, and our work is given to a press, and we hope and pray they will represent us well. Most of the time it works out. Occasionally (as CDY and others can attest) it does not.
I am late to this story, but read thoughtful commentary at Collin's, Reb's and Barbara's and elsewhere.