I don't know exactly where this co-worker fits on a totem pole. I create creative content and I have an editor who is my boss. This new co-worker works on the production end of things- advising of deadlines, reminding of deadlines, sourcing graphics, etc.
In the last number of years that I've had this job, there have been a number of people who have had the production position, I have no idea why some of them have left, but some have moved on to better positions in the company. I haven't loved all of the production people that I've worked with, but I've managed to work things out professionally with all of them. I never actually meet them face to face, by the way- I work from home and communicate via e-mail. (with an occasional phone call to/from my editor and one writer's get together where some production people were present)
About five months ago, my production person changed again and I am having a very hard time with this new one. Everything is urgent! even before the deadline is up. Her tone is generally condescending and she is just very unpleasant to communicate with. For example, I sent in one of my pieces that was due (I have a few regular columns) and she wrote back that I sent in an incomplete submission. No, no I didn't. I sent in a column that was due. There is no requirement for me to send all of my pieces as a group, I've always sent them in as they're done. Even her (rare) positive comments are irritating- i.e. You did it the way I wanted! Keep it up!
I admit that I'm not always great about my deadlines, I'm generally 1-3 days late, but that's never been a problem in the past- and I've checked with my editor about it also.
Basically, I'm wondering:
1) Is there a way for me to politely tell her to back off? I know this is extremely childish and I have to get over myself, but I find myself getting so annoyed with her constant snippiness that it makes me want to purposely delay. (you can't tell me what to do! Yes, yes, I'm five years old inside) I don't actually do that, but I kind of feel like a rebellious teenager every time I get one of her e-mails.
2) Should I go to my editor to intervene? I actually had to do that once-I had been really sick for a number of weeks and couldn't keep up- my editor knew this and had told me to take it easy- (the kind of creative work I do can't be done on autopilot) production was being particularly nasty and my editor spoke to her and worked out a new schedule for me to catch up on things.
My editor's great, but she's also relatively new- she took over in the summer - and I really don't want to get her involved again. Is there any nice way to let her know that this production person is unpleasant without making a big deal about it.
I don't know if it makes a difference- we are published regularly, but my deadlines are always well before we go to print- weeks to over a month in general. I've often had questions about a piece of mine in an issue they're working on weeks after I've submitted it.
So tell me e-hellions, if you made it this far, any sage advice?