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A WINDOW INTO YA: Q + A with 3 2015 “WHITE PINE” NOMINEES (Part 1)

Welcome to November’s kid lit blog! A few weeks ago, the Ontario Library Association announced its list of book nominations for the wonderful Forest of Tree awards. What happens next? Kids and adults — about 1/4 million of them! — across the province begin to voraciously read the books in the categories that interest them. In April they cast their vote for their favourites. In May, the winners are announced at an exciting two-day festival in Toronto and at other locations around Ontario.

The Proust Questionnaire, with Edward Nixon

Though The Fissures of Our Throats (Guernica Editions) is Edward Nixon's first full length collection, Edward is a well-known figure in the Toronto literary community, curating the popular Livewords reading series and publishing four previous chapbooks of his work. So it comes as no surprise that his collection has already made an impact, with fellow writers praising it for its confidence and playfulness. Of The Fissures in Our Throats, poet Jim Johnstone said "[it's] pitch perfect, singing with a fully formed voice".


Happened to be listening to R.E.M.'s "Drive" all day. And then I saw this.

with Mark

A bag of mixed nuts, a stranger (Mark), Marvin (again), a Saturday, a good one.

Who’s Sponsoring Your Publishing Dreams: Puma, a publisher, or no one?

By Dalton Higgins

There’s nothing like attending a book festival or fair to get a genuine spin on how Canadian literary types process info. I relish any opportunity us bloggers get to gather some completely unofficial, on-the-ground, informal market research, on the state of the biz. My cup (of innuendo) had completely runneth over after having spent three full days schmoozing and hobnobbing with booksellers, agents, publishers, fellow authors and consumers at the inaugural INSPIRE: Toronto International Book Fair.

with Mat Laporte and Paloma: About a Goodness (Part V)

   Paloma left and Mat and I discuss how The Contemporary Poetry Group is a love action, and there's no better way to deal with evil than to make something good. We have the power. Also we talk poetry and death, death and posterity.


Washuuup kids? I thought today I would reveal my secret twitter account. But don't follow me though. Like, seriously--don't.

with Mat Laporte and Paloma: About a Goodness (Part IV)

Paloma asks me questions and I respond like a mid-September Virgo. Mat makes an observation which the entire conversation ribbons itself around.

Poets in Profile: Stan Rogal

Stan Rogal's After Words (Guernica Editions) is a series of poetic responses to authors and artists both contemporary and iconic. Steve Venright called After Words "a nuanced work vibrant with wordplay, humour, musicality, atmosphere, and style". Stan's work has drawn comparisons to talented and diverse writers including Leonard Cohen, Anaïs Nin and Italo Calvino.

Writers' Trust Gala Guest Authors on Celebrating Margaret Atwood's 75th Birthday!

Tomorrow night, November 25, dozens of authors and book lovers will gather at Toronto's Four Seasons Hotel to fete our country's most famous scribe and Scorpio — Margaret Atwood turned 75 on November 18, and the Writers' Trust of Canada has taken up her milestone birthday as the theme of this year's glamorous fundraising gala.

Video of the Week

Video of the Week: Q&A With Sylvia Day

Author Sylvia Day talks about cover designs, her writing space and more in this video interview. Day is the author of the steamy Crossfire series, including the most recent book and the final instalment in the series, Captivated by You (Penguin Canada).

If you're looking for a holiday gift that will warm up (or heat up!) someone's winter nights, Day's books are a good bet. Check out the video to hear from her about her characters and her feelings about ending her blockbuster series.

Writer In Residence

November 1, 2014 to December 1, 2014

Aisha Sasha John »

Aisha Sasha John is a poet and dance improviser. Her publications include THOU (BookThug 2014), Gimme yr little quiet (BookThug 2012) and The Shining Material (BookThug 2011). In Canadian Dancing, Aisha’s current work-in-progress, she continues her practice of collaborating with improvising musicians. Aisha earned an Honours BA in African Studies and Semiotics from the University of Toronto as well as an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Guelph. From 2004-2007, she was a lead dancer with Nouvel Exposé. Born in Montreal, Aisha spent most of her childhood in Vancouver, and currently lives in Toronto.

You can write to Aisha throughout the month of November at


Random reads



(Coach House Books)
From the publisher's website: Troubled is brutally honest and erotically frank, a no-holds-barred confession of a patient/psychiatrist relationship gone horribly wrong. With his signature mix of scathing self-analysis and volatile wordplay, RM Vaughan brazenly documents how an innocent flirtation with his therapist escalated into a dangerous sexual misadventure. When the clandestine relationship goes awry, the consequences are heart-rending and career-ending.

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