News | 2011

2011 Reading List

I read one hundred eight published books in 2011. Okay, I had a little help--I was on the jury for the Chocolate Lily Awards (where I got to read tons of fantastic YA fiction)--but I still am rather pleased and grateful at being exposed to so many different stories.

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Story Structure

Capilano University Continuing Studies will be offering my Story Structure course this fall. We'll be meeting for six consecutive Tuesdays (October 25 to November 29) from 7:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at Capilano University's North Shore Campus.

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1st Book Launch

1st Book Competition

On Tuesday, April 26 at Café Montmartre in Vancouver, Anvil Press will be launching the winners of SFU's 1st Book Competition. The event kicks off at 7:30 p.m. and I'm really looking forward to it. I still remember the day I got to call each of them and tell them they won their categories in the competition--three of the best phone calls I've ever made.

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The 2011 DTES Writers' Jamboree Agenda

The 2011 DTES Writers' Jamboree

We've now finalized our agenda for April 29's The 2011 DTES Writers' Jamboree (which is being sponsored by Simon Fraser University's The Writer's Studio, the Vancouver Public Library Foundation, and the Carnegie Community Centre) and I'd like to share it with you now. Posters are hitting the streets tomorrow, so consider this a sneak peak at what's sure to be a lively, informative, and fun-filled day.

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The 2011 DTES Writers' Jamboree

The 2011 DTES Writers' Jamboree

In April, I'll be hosting The 2011 DTES Writers' Jamboree at the Carnegie Community Centre. The Jamboree, which is being put on by Simon Fraser University's The Writer's Studio, the Vancouver Public Library Foundation, and the Carnegie Community Centre, is a one-day event featuring mini-manuscript consultations, round table discussions, professional skills workshops, guest author readings (with Brian Payton, Evelyn Lau, and Gregory Scofield), and a writing contest for writers in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside (with three winners being published in Geist). I've been involved in both of the past two Jamboree's we've held, and I'm really looking forward to it again, this year.

I Found a Better One

The Beggar's Garden by Michael Christie

In a recent post, I talked about how I liked Michael Christie's similies. I even quoted examples from his new book, The Beggar's Garden. Well, I found another one I want to share, because, well, it's so disturbing and evocative and bang on. This is from Mike's story "Goodbye Porkpie Hat" (which was short listed for 2008's Journey Prize) and describes a woman half-heartedly trying to persuade her boyfriend not to beat up the narrator in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.

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The Beggar's Garden

The Beggar's Garden by Michael Christie

On Friday night, I went to a book launch for a friend of mine--Michael Christie. The event was held at Ardea Books on 4th, and really, I'd have to say it was rather a success. It was great to see Mike again, as well as many of the people I went to UBC with. Together, we got to hear some pretty cool stuff--Mike read two excerpts from his debut short story collection The Beggar's Garden.

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Does This Mean I'm a Poet Now?

Sport Literate

I just got a rather cool parcel in the mail--two of my contributor's copies for the 15th Anniversary Issue of Sport Literate, a Chicago-based literary journal focusing on "honest reflections on life's leisurely diversions." You see, editor-in-chief William Meiners and I have been exchanging email for the past few months after I sent some of my poetry to him. Apparently, Frank Van Zant, Meiner's poetry editor, liked my stuff enough to include it in their current issue (he also used one of my poems for their electronic newsletter back in November, 2010). "Two Minutes" and "Zebra" are both ostensibly about hockey, although if you read between the lines ...

I Found Chocky

Chocky by John Wyndham

Last August, I put up a post after I'd found and reread four of John Wyndham's novels (Rediscovering Wyndham). At the end of that post I sort of hinted I was looking for copies of the other books published under Wyndham's name (I remember his writing fondly and would love to reread his stories). Just before Christmas, I came across Plan for Chaos and I got excited--I'd found a Wyndham novel I'd never heard of before. But then I read the back cover. Here was a book never published in Wyndham's lifetime, billed as "an amazing new discovery: ... [a] previously unpublished companion novel to the sci-fi classic The Day of the Triffids." Disappointed, I put it back on the shelf.

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