Life Into Story workshop

Got word on Saturday that the Alexandra Writers want to include the one-day workshop I am developing in their fall calendar. Life Into Story: Transforming Experiences Into Fiction will run 10 — 3:30 on Saturday, September 26 at the Alexandra Centre, 922 – 9 Ave. SE. Which incidentally was the scene of a punk show held so long ago that CBC sent out a camera crew and my friends and I were on the news the next night. And no, I have no idea who played at it. But there you go, full circle, dramatic irony and all that jazz.

Anyway, the fall calendar is not up yet, but here is a link to the Alexandra Writers Centre. I will post details later in case anyone wants to register:

Stairway to Gilligan’s Island

Had this baby on vinyl many years ago. Very happy to hear it again:

Apparently, Little Roger and The Goosebumps were sued by Page and Plant for this one. Dudes, lighten up!

Summer begins

School ended on Thursday, which also happened to be my 46th birthday. School often ends on my birthday; when I was a child I regarded this as a mark of favour from the gods. Now I see it for the curse that it really is. It just adds insult to injury, is all. Oh, well. This year’s end was marked by Dan’s traumatic and tear-filled goodbye to his beloved teacher. It was a pretty teary event all around, actually. Anyway, it’s over now and he is soothing his soul with a new electric guitar. Sweet, eh? As for me, I’m still 46. That’s the age my father was when he died and it’s kind of freaky to think about that. Of course, perhaps I should just not spend so much time thinking. Or I should think about things that actually have a point more often.

Submitted an outline for a one-day workshop to the Alexandra Writers Centre yesterday, and hope they’ll be interested in me giving it in the fall.

Now that the boys are a little older and tend to spend a lot of time on bikes with their buds, summer is not such a fallow time for me anymore. Which is good, because I have things I need to do, like get after setting up some readings. Finish those two stories I have apparently been working on the last few weeks and get them out there. And then get rewriting that novel. I’m thinking proofs should show up here before too long, as well. And then I guess we’ll head out for some Island time at some point, though that’s up in the air because of renos we’re having done this summer. So summer looks a little chaotic at this point, but it’s good to keep busy. Keeps you from thinking too much.

Strange things happen in June

Had you told me even a couple of months ago that I would be submitting an illustrated sonnet to an actual magazine, like I did just now, I would have laughed. But the older I get the more I have to just shrug and remember: Never say never. I actually did have a couple of poems published in a tiny, long-dead journal back in the mid-nineties, so I suppose it isn’t entirely impossible that someone might want to publish more of my poetry. Which I seldom write, but now and again the urge seizes me. Even less frequently do I have an urge to share this stuff, but this is what happens when you spend a lot of time alone. Now we will see what they say. If anything.

That out of my system, I plan to work on a couple of stories I abandoned when I started the edits on Love Minus Zero, back in early 2008 (doesn’t that seem like a long time ago?). I’m also looking into teaching creative writing and to that end am submitting a workshop outline to the Alexandra Writers Centre by the end of June as well as taking a one-day course at Mount Royal College later this month, Principles of Adult Learning.

That’s the theory, at least. Of course, there are a lot of attractive diversions out there. And the weather is beautiful; it’s not even snowing. This is how kids feel at the end of the school year. Restless. Distracted. Unfocused. Preoccupied. Oh, well. That’s June for you.

Fictionistas in my future?

It looks that way, judging by Thistledown’s new fall catalogue. The info about Nothing Sacred is here, on page five:

So I’m thinking that “Western Canadian co-author tour” mentioned in the Publicity and Marketing section would be a trip with the Fictionistas program. A number of Western Canadian publishers send women authors with new books on a series of joint readings. Sounds good to me. As I was telling my sister last night, I found doing out of town readings last fall was kind of a lonely experience. I could understand why Dylan Thomas had those eighteen straight whiskies that night. But yes, having a group would be fun. We’ll see what happens.

Looking forward to lunching tomorrow with my friend Jan Markley, whose first middle grade novel, Dead Frog on the Porch, is forthcoming from Gumboot Books this fall. Yeah! Will we have eighteen straight whiskies? I doubt it, since I don’t think they serve whiskey at Boca Loca. Besides, whiskey seems to have a narcotic effect on me; history has shown that it’s not good for me to drink it.

Ahem. Okay. All for now.

Edmonton; Preorder

Although I did not win this year’s CAA Exporting Alberta Award (that honour went to Karen Bass’ young adult novel Run Like Jager) I had a swell time reading and schmoozing with the Alberta branch crowd, as I always do. The readings were excellent and I’m sure the judges had a tough time picking a winner. Also fun was our morning at West Edmonton Mall. That is one big mall, no joke.

Here’s Nothing Sacred’s debut in the Chapters Indigo catalogue. ISBNs and everything — I didn’t just dream it:

Lovely. Now you can preorder as many copies as you wish.

Off to check out Lillian Gish and a young Ronald Colman in 1923’s The White Sister. What’s this, you say, a silent movie? Where is Bruce, then? Off at a conference in Colorado. Yes, a chance for me to indulge my bizarre cinematic tastes. Which reminds me, it so happens that Errol Flynn’s 100th birthday falls on the weekend of Cub-o-Rama later this month. Really must work out some kind of event for that. Hmmm.