Next Stop, SappyFest!

Categories:  electronic literature, mini-books, performance, reading
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Literary types of all stripes will invade SappyFest this year. Thursday, July 30, I’ll pack a suitcase full of zines and novels and join the migration eastward.

SappyFest is a little independent music festival produced annually in partnership with the Ok.Quoi?! Contemporary Arts Festival, Struts Gallery & Faucet Media Arts Centre. The festival takes place July 31 – August 2, 2009, in Sackville, New Brunswick, the centre of the universe.

If you happen to be in the centre of the universe that weekend, come visit me at the Zine Fair, Saturday August 1, 12 to 4 PM at the United Church. There will be participants from across Canada, a kids workshop, a presentation by Andy Brown (Conundrum Press) and readings by Jeffrey Makie, Jaime Forsthythe and Dawn-Aeron Wason.

Sunday, August 2, 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM, check out the The Vogue Writers Block, a multi-media event at The Vogue Theater (Sackville’s art deco movie theater) featuring The Joe, Catherine Kidd, J.R. Carpenter, Lezlie Lowe, Andrea Dorfman, Ian Roy, and Thesis. I’ll reading a section of my novel, Words the Dog Knows, that traverses three different electronic literature projects (How I Loved the Broken Things of Rome, Entre Ville, and in absentia).

Now a registered non-profit organization, SappyFest Incorporated, the festival was founded in 2006 by the good people of Sappy Records, Julie Doiron, Jon Claytor and Paul Henderson.

Ok.Quoi?! is an interdisciplinary festival of contemporary art, focusing on video, audio, new and independent music produced by Struts Gallery & Faucet Media Arts Centre in partnership with SappyFest. The works of over 50 artists will be presented over 6 days in a variety of screenings, installations, concerts, broadcasts and performances. Alongside exciting international and national work, Ok.Quoi?! features new and innovative projects from local and regional artists. All events save for the Last Chance for Summer Romance concert and barbecue are free, and open to all ages.

More info: SappyFest & Ok.Quoi?!


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WORDS THE DOG KNOWS wins Best English Book – Expozine Alternative Press Awards

Categories:  Words the Dog Knows
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My first novel, Words the Dog Knows (Conundrum Press, 2008), won Best English Book at the Expozine Alternative Press Awards Gala held Tuesday, March 3 at Casa del Popolo, 4873 St-Laurent in Montreal. Six prizes were awarded, recognizing the best English and French books, comics and zines sold at Expozine, Montreal’s annual small press, comic and zine fair.

Expozine 2008 took place on Saturday, November 29 and Sunday, November 30, 2008. By far the largest Expozine ever, this 7th edition saw close to 300 exhibitors and 15 000 visitors. Each exhibitor was asked to submit one publication to the Expozine Alternative Press Awards. 36 titles were short-listed. The short list for Best English Book included some of my favourite people. I’m so glad I was nominated – otherwise I would have been tough deciding whom to root for.

Winners were chosen by an esteemed panel of judges. Here’s what they had to say about Words the Dog Knows:

With fluid, unpretentious prose scattered with humour, Carpenter imparts wisdom about daily life – sometimes between the lines – in this picturesque and gentle novel.

Huge thanks to the judges, to Andy Brown and Maya Merrick at Conundrum Press, and to Lousi Rastilli, Billy Mavreas and everyone else who makes Expozine happen.
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WORDS THE DOG KNOWS Shortlisted for Best English Book – Expozine Alternative Press Awards

Categories:  Words the Dog Knows
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The Expozine Alternative Press Awards Gala will be held Tuesday, March 3 at Casa del Popolo, 4873 St-Laurent in Montreal. The Gala starts at 7 pm, awards will begin being presented shortly after 8 pm, and you are all invited to stay and mingle during the DJ night that follows at 10 p.m. Admission is free and beer and liquor specials will be in effect all night.

Come and celebrate the best of the nearly 300 small presses that took part in last fall’s Expozine small press, comic and zine fair! Six prizes will be awarded, recognizing the best book, comic and zine sold at Expozine.

The winners were chosen by an esteemed panel of judges out of the hundreds of publications submitted at Expozine in November. The gala is a rare chance for you to meet and mingle with the most talented up-and-comers of the local publishing scene, as well as purchase copies of the 36 short-listed titles.

The Nominees / Les nominés:

English Book:

Words the Dog Knows, J.R. Carpenter, Conundrum Press, www.conundrumpress.com
The Debaucher, Jason Camlot, Insomniac Press www.insomniacpress.com
The Sunlight Chronicles, Chris Dyer, Divine Life LLC, www.sunlight-chronicles.com
Fear Of Fighting, Stacey May Fowles & Marlena Zuber, Invisible Publishing, www.invisiblepublishing.com
Blert, Jordan Scott, Coach House Books, www.chbooks.com
Jack, Mike Spry, Snare Books, snarebooks.wordpress.com

English Zine:

Four Minutes To Midnight no. 10, www.lokidesign.net/2356
Nailbiter: An Anxiety Zine, www.steemilie.free23.net
Soulgazers, Camilla Wynne, www.endlessbanquet.blogspot.com
Lickety Split no. 7, www.licketysplitzine.com
Mostly True vol.19 issue 7, Bill Daniel, Microcosm Publishing, www.billdaniel.net, www.microcosmpublishing.com
Place Magazine, Winter 08 issue, www.placemag.org

English Comic:

Mourning a lover, Sofeel, myspace.com/sofeel
Welcome to the Dollhouse by Ken Dahl, Microcosm Publishing, www.microcosmpublishing.com
BFF by Nate Beaty, Microcosm Publishing, natebeaty.com, www.microcosmpublishing.com
Hypocrite, Dakota McFadzean, dakota.mcfadzean.googlepages.com
Finding Joy, Luke Ramsey, Anteism Publishing, islandsfold.com
Kieffer #2, Jason Kieffer, jasonkieffer.com

Nominés francophones fanzines :

Trio à emporter, par Kathey Tibo
Gargouillis indigeste #003, www.gargouillis.com
Ffsshmrwlbaouarf par Simon Bossé/ Mille Putois, www.myspace.com/milleputois
Ectropion, collectif de crémation littéraire, www.myspace.com/ectropion
Fanzine sans titre, Geneviève Dumas
Toxico (Fanzine # 3), par Delf Berg, delfberg.blogspot.com

Nominés francophones BD :

Hasemeister : C’était 2007, Frédéric Mahieu, www.hasemeister.com
La terreur noir pâle, C. Reney
Fatima, A. Desmarteaux, Egotrip Productions, www.arthuro.ca
Une aventure de M. Pixel, Étienne Beck, L’Employé du Moi, www.employe-du-moi.org
Chimeris 1: Sirus, Adeline Lamarre, Vaar Éditeur, www.vaar.ca
Humoro Sapiens, Yayo, Les 400 Coups, www.editions400coups.ca

Nominés francophones livres : À venir …

EXPOZINE
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WORDS THE DOG KNOWS – Toronto Launch – Monday, November 17, 2008

Categories:  launch, reading, Words the Dog Knows
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We invite you to join us in celebration of the publication of Emily Holton’s latest book, Dear Canada Council/Our Starland (Montreal: Conundrum Press) and J.R. Carpenter’s first novel, Words the Dog Knows (Montreal: Conundrum Press). Animations, music, and two beautiful books – take your pick! – they’re all great excuses to come drink too much in Parkdale on a Monday night.

A This Is Not A Reading Series event presented by Pages Books & Magazines, Conundrum Press and EYE WEEKLY.

Monday, November 17, 2008, 7:00pm
Gladstone Hotel Ballroom
1214 Queen Street West
Toronto, ON

J. R. Carpenter’s long-awaited first novel Words the Dog Knows follows the paths of a quirky cast of characters through the Mile End neighbourhood of Montreal. Theo and Simone set about training Isaac the Wonder Dog to: sit, come, stay. Meanwhile, he has fifty girlfriends to keep track of and a master plan for the rearrangement of every stick in every alleyway in Mile End. He introduces Theo and Simone to their neighbours. He trains them to see with the immediacy of a dog’s-eye-view. Words the Dog Knows isn’t a story about a dog. It’s a story because of a dog. Walking though the the jumbled intimacy of Montreal’s back alleyways day after day, Theo and Simone come to see their neighbourhood ­ and each other ­ in a whole new way. For more information on Words the Dog Knows please visit: http://luckysoap.com/stories/wordsthedogknows.html

Emily Holton’s novella Dear Canada Council is an illustrated plea for plane tickets, in which the narrator details her plans to “found a town”. Complete with Incas, crickets, and a small family of deaf-mutes, her written request doubles as what also might be the craziest love poem you’ve ever read. Awestruck and sleepless in Hamilton, she is haunted by visions of celebrity reporter Brian Linehan, obsessed with a young boy she saw once on the TV news, and just wants to do better, get married, and wear a sash, a red mayor’s sash. Can’t Canada Council help her out? // Emily Holton’s Our Starland is a novella broken into small, dreamy pieces. Flash by flash, its pieces ferry a cast of characters through a season as they navigate the fruit picking diaspora of the Okanagan Valley. Hitchhiking, nightwalking, these characters remember the constellations wrong, leave their daughters alone, and sleep outside, once again, but with a sleeping bag this time. For more information on Dear Canada Council / Our Starland please visit: http://www.conundrumpress.com/nt_holton2.html

J. R. Carpenter: http://luckysoap.com
Emily Holton: http://www.emilyholton.com
Conundrum Press: http://conundrumpress.com
THIS IS NOT A READING SERIES: http://www.pagesbooks.ca/events.php

So many dear friends turned out for the NYC and Montreal launches we can’t wait to take the show on the road. Here’s some of the fun we’ve had so far:


NYC launch at KGB Bar, Thursday October 23, 2008


Montreal at Sky Blue Door, Friday November 7, 2008
Maya Merrick at the he Book Table


Montreal at Sky Blue Door, Friday November 7, 2008
We love you Andy Brown.


Montreal at Sky Blue Door, Friday November 7, 2008


Montreal at Sky Blue Door, Friday November 7, 2008
It’s this much fun!
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WORDS THE DOG KNOWS – Montreal Launch – Friday, November 7, 2008

Categories:  electronic literature, in absentia, launch, Words the Dog Knows, writing
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Dear Friends. We invite you to join us for an evening of stories, drawings and music in celebration of the publication of J.R. Carpenter’s first novel, WORDS THE DOG KNOWS (Montreal: Conundrum Press) and Emily Holton’s two novella’s Dear Canada Council / Our Starland (Montreal: Conundrum Press), with readings by J. R. Carpenter and Emily Holton, drawings by J. R. Carpenter, Elisibeth Belliveau and Emily Holton and a presentation of J. R. Carpenter’s recent web-based writing project in absentia (presented by Dare-Dare Centre de diffusion d’art multidisciplinaire de Montréal).

SKY BLUE DOOR
5403B Saint-Laurent (view map)
(south of Saint-Viateur, behind Enterprise Car Rental – enter via alleyway)
Friday, November 7th, 7:00 pm – 11:00 pm (free)

J. R. Carpenter’s long-awaited first novel Words the Dog Knows follows the paths of a quirky cast of characters through the Mile End neighbourhood of Montreal. Theo and Simone set about training Isaac the Wonder Dog to: sit, come, stay. Meanwhile, he has fifty girlfriends to keep track of and a master plan for the rearrangement of every stick in every alleyway in Mile End. He introduces Theo and Simone to their neighbours. He trains them to see with the immediacy of a dog’s-eye-view. Words the Dog Knows isn’t a story about a dog. It’s a story because of a dog. Walking though the the jumbled intimacy of Montreal’s back alleyways day after day, Theo and Simone come to see their neighbourhood ­ and each other ­ in a whole new way.

For more information on Words the Dog Knows, including full event listings and purchase information, please visit: http://luckysoap.com/stories/wordsthedogknows.html

J. R. Carpenter’s web-based writing project in absentia addresses issues of gentrification and its erasures in the Mile End neighbourhood of Montreal. By manipulating the Google Maps API, Carpenter creates an interactive non-linear narrative of interconnected “postcard” stories, thus haunting a satellite view of the neighbourhood with the stories of former tenants of Mile End (fictional or otherwise) who have forced out by economically motivated decisions made in their absence. in absentia features new fiction by J. R. Carpenter with invited authors: Lance Blomgren, Andy Brown, Daniel Canty, Alexis O’Hara and Colette Tougas. Some of the stories in in absentia also appear in Words the Dog Knows. To view in absentia online please visit: http://luckysoap.com/inabsentia

Emily Holton’s novella Dear Canada Council is an illustrated plea for plane tickets, in which the narrator details her plans to “found a town”. Complete with Incas, crickets, and a small family of deaf-mutes, her written request doubles as what also might be the craziest love poem you’ve ever read. Awestruck and sleepless in Hamilton, she is haunted by visions of celebrity reporter Brian Linehan, obsessed with a young boy she saw once on the TV news, and just wants to do better, get married, and wear a sash, a red mayor’s sash. Can’t Canada Council help her out? // Emily Holton’s Our Starland is a novella broken into small, dreamy pieces. Flash by flash, its pieces ferry a cast of characters through a season as they navigate the fruit picking diaspora of the Okanagan Valley. Hitchhiking, nightwalking, these characters remember the constellations wrong, leave their daughters alone, and sleep outside, once again, but with a sleeping bag this time.

For more information on Our Starland / Dear Canada Council please visit: http://www.conundrumpress.com/nt_holton2.html

J. R. Carpenter: http://luckysoap.com
Emily Holton: http://www.emilyholton.com
Conundrum Press: http://conundrumpress.com
Dare-Dare Centre de diffusion d’art multidisciplinaire de Montréal: http://dare-dare.org
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The Pilot Reading Series October Edition

Categories:  reading, Words the Dog Knows
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Presented by Matrix magazine, Pop Montreal and the QWF.

J.R. Carpenter
a. rawlings
Darren Bifford
Michelle Sterling
Rebecca Silver Slayter

hosted by Mike Spry
music by Billy Fong Parade

Sunday October 26th
Bar Blizzarts, 3956A St. Laurent, Montreal
doors @ 9 – readings @ 9:30

J. R. Carpenter grew up on a farm in Nova Scotia and has lived in Montreal since 1990. She is a two-time winner of the CBC Quebec Short Story Competition and a Web Art Finalist in the Drunken Boat Panliterary Awards 2006. Her electronic literature has been presented internationally. Her short fiction has been broadcast on CBC Radio, translated into French, and anthologized in Le livre de chevet, Short Stuff, Lust for Life and In Other Words, and has appeared in journals including Geist, The New Quarterly and Matrix. Her first novel, Words the Dog Knows, is published by Conundrum Press (Montreal, 2008). http://luckysoap.com

a.rawlings’ first book, Wide slumber for lepidopterists (Coach House Books, 2006, Alcuin Award recipient, Gerald Lampert Award nominee), documents a night in the life of Northern Ontario. rawlings co-edited Shift & Switch: New Canadian Poetry (The Mercury Press, 2005), co-organized The Lexiconjury Reading Series (2001-6), and hosted Heart of a Poet (2005). She currently facilitates sound/text/movement workshops for all ages. a.rawlings’ escapist fantasies feature kynlíf með álfum, Ghentish snails, and a theremin; and yes, someday, she will escape.

Darren Bifford currently lives in Montreal, where he teaches philosophy at Champlain College, St. Lambert. He is the reviews editor for Matrix.

Michelle Sterling lives and longs for the nineties in Montreal. She is a member of the Soulgazers writing collective and her work has appeared in Maisonneuve, Islands Fold, $2 Comes With A Mixtape, and The Art of Trespassing by Invisible Publishing.

Rebecca Silver Slayter is an MA student in creative writing at Concordia University and an editor of Brick literary journal. She has published fiction in places like The Antigonish Review and The Hart House Review, and won a Hart House Poetry Prize and a Hart House Fiction prize in 2003 (2nd place in both cases).
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New York City Launch – Words the Dog Knows – KGB Bar, October 23, 2008

Categories:  launch, reading, Words the Dog Knows
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Dear Friends. We invite you to join us in celebrating the publication of J.R. Carpenter’s first novel, WORDS THE DOG KNOWS (Montreal: Conundrum Press) with an evening of readings from Montreal and New York-area fiction writers that will take you from the swamplands of Florida to the streets of Montreal and onward to points beyond. J.R. will be joined by New Yorker Karen Russell, fellow Conundrum author Corey Frost, and Canadian New Yorker Nora Maynard.

KGB Bar http://kgbbar.com/calendar/
85 East 4th Street, New York City, NY
Thursday, October 23, 2008
7:00 pm – 9:00 pm (free)

J. R. Carpenter’s long-awaited first novel Words the Dog Knows follows the paths of a quirky cast of characters through the Mile End neighbourhood of Montreal. Theo and Simone set about training Isaac the Wonder Dog to: sit, come, stay. Meanwhile, he has fifty girlfriends to keep track of and a master plan for the rearrangement of every stick in every alleyway in Mile End. He introduces Theo and Simone to their neighbours. He trains them to see with the immediacy of a dog’s-eye-view. Words the Dog Knows isn’t a story about a dog. It’s a story because of a dog. Walking though the the jumbled intimacy of Montreal’s back alleyways day after day, Theo and Simone come to see their neighbourhood ­ and each other ­ in a whole new way.


For more information on Words the Dog Knows, including a full launch event listing and ordering information, please visit: http://luckysoap.com/stories/wordsthedogknows.html or Conundrum Press: http://conundrumpress.com

J.R. Carpenter is a two-time winner of the CBC Quebec Short Story Competition and a fellow of Yaddo, Ucross and The Vermont Studio Center. Her short fiction has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies and her electronic literature has been presented internationally. Words the Dog Knows is her first novel. http://luckysoap.com

Karen Russell is the author of the critically acclaimed short story collection, ST. LUCY’S SCHOOL FOR GIRLS RAISED BY WOLVES (Knopf). Karen’s fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, Granta, and Zoetrope, among others. She is currently at work on a novel. http://www.randomhouse.com/author/results.pperl?authorid=70463

Corey Frost is the author of MY OWN DEVICES: AIRPORT VERSION (Montreal: Conundrum Press). Corey has performed his stories at Lollapalooza, The Perpetual Motion Roadshow, and at festivals around the world. http://www.coreyfrost.com

Nora Maynard
is a winner of the Bronx Council on the Arts Chapter One Competition and a fellow of the Ragdale Foundation, the Millay Colony, Ucross, and Blue Mountain Center. She is a columnist for Apartment Therapy Media’s The Kitchn, and is completing her first novel, BURNT HILL ROAD. http://www.noramaynard.com
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Words the Dog Knows

Categories:  reading, Words the Dog Knows, writing
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Words the Dog Knows, J. R. Carpenter
conundrum press (Montreal)
October 2008
978-1-894994-34-7
Novel
5×7 inches, 168 pages
$15 CDN / US

Words the Dog Knows is now available in many fine bookstores including some of my favorites: Pages, in Toronto, and the Drawn & Quarterly store on Bernard Street in Montreal. The best place to order the book online is from the conundrum press website.

Words the Dog Knows isn’t a story about a dog. It’s a story because of a dog.

Words the Dog Knows Launch Events:

NYC – Thursday October 23, KGB Bar
85 East 4th Street, 7-9 pm
with readings by Karen Russell, Nora Maynard and Corey Frost
more info

Montreal – Friday November 7, Sky Blue Door
5403 B Saint-Laurent, 7-11 pm
also launching: J. R. Carpenter, in absentia
in association with Dare-Dare

Montreal – Sunday November 9, Blizzarts
3956A Saint-Laurent, 8 pm
with Harold Hoefle and Katia Grubisic.

Toronto – Monday November 17, This Is Not A Reading Series
Gladstone Ballroom, 1214 Queen Street West, 7:30 pm
also launching: Emily Holton, OUR STARLAND/DEAR CANADA COUNCIL
more info
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Words the Dog Knows is at the printer

Categories:  in absentia, Words the Dog Knows, writing
Tags: , , , , ,

At long last my first novel, Words the Dog Knows, is finished. Written, edited, copy edited, laid out, illustrated, proof read, proof read again and sent to the printer. All in just under 10 months! Word on the street is Words will be back from the printer sometime late September / early October. Launch event details are listed below.

Words the Dog Knows is published by conundrum press (Montreal). Here’s what the catalog had to say about it:

J. R. Carpenter’s long-awaited first novel Words the Dog Knows follows the crisscrossing paths of a quirky cast of characters through the Mile End neighbourhood of Montreal. Simone couldn’t wait to get out of rural Nova Scotia. In Montreal she buries her head in books about far off places. Her best friend Julie gets her a job in the corporate world. Traveling for business cures Simone of her restlessness. One summer Julie’s dog Mingus introduces Simone to Theo. They move in together. Theo is a man of few words. Until he and Simone get a dog, that is. They set about training Isaac the Wonder Dog to: sit, come, stay. Meanwhile, he has fifty girlfriends to keep track of and a master plan for the rearrangement of every stick in every alleyway in Mile End. He introduces Theo and Simone to their neighbours. He trains them to see the jumbled intimacy of Mile End’s back alleyways with the immediacy of a dog’s-eye-view.

Carpenter writes with humour and directness, melding the emotional precision of her award-winning short fiction with the narrative ingenuity of her pioneering works in electronic literature. The result is a fresh and accessible first novel written and illustrated in the vernacular of the neighbourhood. Cooking smells, noisy neighbours and laundry lines criss-cross the alleyway one sentence at a time.

Words the Dog Knows isn’t a story about a dog. It’s a story because of a dog. Walking with their dog though the same back alleyways day after day, Theo and Simone come to see their neighbourhood – and each other – in a whole new way.

Launch events:

NYC – Thursday October 23, KGB Bar
85 East 4th Street, 7-9 pm
with readings by Karen Russell, Nora Maynard and Corey Frost
more info

Montreal – Friday November 7, Sky Blue Door
5403 B Saint-Laurent, 7-11 pm
also launching: J. R. Carpenter, in absentia
in association with Dare-Dare

Montreal – Sunday November 9, The Green Room
5386 St Laurent, with Harold Hoefle and Katia Grubisic.

Toronto – Monday November 17, This Is Not A Reading Series
Gladstone Ballroom, 1214 Queen Street West, 7:30 pm
also launching: Emily Holton, OUR STARLAND/DEAR CANADA COUNCIL
more info
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Words the Dog Knows – Reading at The Yellow Door

Categories:  reading, Words the Dog Knows
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This has been the most indoor summer ever, but boy has it been productive. I’ve written a novel. I’m as surprised as you are! It’s called, Words the Dog Knows. It’s not really about the dog. It’s because of the dog. Because of the dog the characters come to see their neighbourhood – and each other – in a whole new way.

It’s almost, almost, almost, but not quite finished, but I’ll be reading excerpts from it anyway at The Yellow Door later this week. Once the book is actually printed, there will launches in Montreal, New York and Toronto. Information about those events will be posted soon. Meantime, here’s the Yellow Door info:

The Yellow Door
POETRY AND PROSE READING
http://www.yellowdoor.org
3625 Aylmer, Montreal (between Pine & Prince Arthur) Tel: 514-398-6243

Thursday, August 28, 2008
Doors open 7:00 pm Reading 7:30 pm At the door $5

J.R. Carpenter is a two-time winner of CBC/QWF Quebec Short Story Competition. Her novel, Words the Dog Knows, is forthcoming from Conundrum Press, fall 2008.

Hugh Hazelton is a poet and translator. His third book of poems, Antimatter, was published with CD by Broken Jaw Press in 2003.

Liam Durcan is a Montreal writer whose novel, Garcia’s Heart, was published in 2007 by McClelland & Stewart.

Rita Donovan Author of six novels & one non-fiction. Her novels have won several awards, among them: CAA/Chapters Award for Fiction, Landed.

Saleema Nawaz’s fiction has been published in Prairie Fire, Grain, & PRISM. Mother Superior (Freehand Books, 2008) is her first short story collection.

Ken Kalman is a poet, playwright, and novelist. Among his publications are a novel, Jesus Loves Me, a play, Defenceless, and Poetry of the Jews.

Laura Golden is author of a poetry book, Laura’s Garden, 1978-2007. Artist, Reiki master, art therapist. From Now On, and Loneliness (Baico Publishing).

Tony Robinson-Smith is author of Back in 6 Years (Goose Lane Editions, 2008): In his first book, adventurer Tony circles the planet by land and sea.

Milton Dawes was one of the seven drummers who started the Tam-Tam drumming on the mountain.

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