The Broadside of a Yarn: A Situationist Strategy for Spinning Sea Stories Ashore

Categories:  conference, electronic literature, exhibition, launch, performance, Writing Coastlines
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Announcing The Broadside of a Yarn, a new hybrid print-digital-performance-writing work by J. R. Carpenter, commissioned by ELMCIP for Remediating the Social, launching at Inspace in Edinburgh 1 November 2012.

In theory, The Broadside of a Yarn is a multi-modal performative pervasive networked narrative attempt to chart fictional fragments of new and long-ago stories of near and far-away seas with naught but a QR code reader and an unbound atlas of hand-made maps of dubious accuracy. In practice, this project is, in a Situationist sense, a willfully absurd endeavour. How can I, a displaced native of rural Nova Scotia (New Scotland), perform the navigation of a narrative route through urban Edinburgh (Old Scotland)? How can any inhabitant of dry land possibly understand the constantly shifting perspective of stories of the high seas?

The Broadside of a Yarn

The Broadside of a Yarn remediates the broadside, a form of networked narrative popular from 16th century onward. Broadsides were written on a wide range of topical subjects, cheaply printed on single sheets of paper (often with images), widely distributed, and posted and performed in public. During the Remediating the Social exhibition (Inspace, Edinburgh, 1-25 November 2012), The Broadside of a Yarn will be posted as a grid of A3-sized square maps, and freely distributed as broadside-sized sheet (while supplies last).

Like the printed broadside ballads of old, the public posting of The Broadside of a Yarn signifies that it is intended to be performed. Embedded within the highly visual cartographic space of this printed map are QR codes which link mobile devices to a collection of separate yet interrelated web pages containing computer-generated narrative dialogues. They may propose imprecise and possibly impossible walking routes through the city. Or they may serve as scripts for poli-vocal performances.

The Broadside of a Yarn

The Broadside of a Yarn will be performed in four or possibly five voices (microphone availability depending) Thursday 1st November 20.00 in the Sculpture Court of Edinburgh College of Art. For more information, please see the Remediating the Social program.

A comprehensive overview of the Remediating the Social conference and exhibition has bee posted on Electronic Literature Authoring Software by Judy Malloy: ELMCIP Invites Scholars and Artists to Remediating the Social, Edinburgh, November 1-3, 2012

For more information – including a bibliography of the wide range of maps and literary works cited in The Broadside of a Yarn – and to view more images of the print maps to be installed at Inspace, please visit Luckysoap.com.

GENERATION[S] Book Launch and Performance Event at Cabaret Fledermaus, Vienna, December 14, 2010

Categories:  Generation(s), launch, performance
Tags: , , , , , ,

My new code narrative book, GENERATION[S], and all the other awesome books in TRAUMAWIEN Edition Schema 2, will launch at Cabaret Fledermaus in Vienna, Tuesday the 14th of December. Or, Dezember, as they spell December in Vienna. Or, Vien, as they spell Vienna in Vienna. I love being part of a production I can’t even read the PR for! I can’t wait to return to Vienna, where all the buildings look like cakes. And I really can’t wait to see the Cabaret Feldermaus. The original was opened in 1907. The interior was designed by Josef Hoffmann. Several other well-known artists of the Viennese Art Nouveau, including Gustav Klimt, contributed to the design of the stage and furniture, as well as posters, postcards, pins and cutlery. Those days are over, alas. The TRAUMAWIEN launch event will be held in the new Cabaret Feldermaus, founded in 1967, and basically unchanged since, despite it’s recent transformation into a disco club. In different places in Europe “disco” means different things. In this case, I sincerely hope there’s a disco ball, to mirror the glittering mosaics of the Feldermaus of old.

In any case, it seems fitting that GENERATION[S] will launch in a venue that has seen many generations come and go. The paradoxes of this setting also seem to be in keeping with those embraced by GENERATION[S] Vienna-based publisher TRAUMAWIEN. As TRAUMAWIEN editor Luc Gross writes, “TRAUMAWIEN considers the paradox of transferring late-breaking digital aesthetics into book form, as new media narrative snapshots of literary genres otherwise quickly lost in the immense output produced by web every second.”

GENERATION[S] is one such snapshot: a book collecting sentences written in Twitter, pulled into Facebook, commented upon, rewritten, retweeted, recommented, rewritten, collated into arrays, parsed by Python scripts, output as short stories in terminal windows, copied and pasted into a Word doc, spaced, placed and paginated, transformed into a book by TRAUMAWIEN’s brilliant designer Julian Palacz. In the book, the digital process are reordered. The output stories come first. They are interspersed with Facebook screenshots showing the first instances of certain of the sentences they contain. The source code follows the stories it generates. Download instructions are offered. One sentence at a time. Wash, rinse, repeat.

For more info on GENERATION[S], TRAUMAWIEN and all the other awesome books launching in Edition Schema 2 visit: http://www.traumawien.at/preview/

Purchase GENERATION[S] online: http://www.amazon.com/Generation-s-J-R-Carpenter/dp/3950291032/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpi_2

TRAUMAWIEN Schema 2 Launch Poster

Präsentation der Edition Schema 2
J. R. Carpenter, Montreal
Ivan Monroy Lopez, Mexico City
Audun Mortensen, Oslo

Präsentation der Edition Hybrid 1
Philip Hautmann, Wien

Coups
Barbara Anna Husar, Wien
Olivia Kaiser, Wien
Brian Larosche, Oslo

Tanzmusik
Schellackplatten – Otto Jekel
othon.jekel.at

Dienstag, 14. Dezember 2010, 19 Uhr OPEN END!
Cabaret Fledermaus
Spiegelgasse 2, 1010 Wien

http://traumawien.at/

CityFish Beta Launch at AI_ELO June 3-6, 2010

Categories:  CityFish, conference, electronic literature, exhibition
Tags: , , , , ,

For the past six months I’ve been working on a massive new web-based hypermedia narrative called CityFish. A beta version will be on display at Archive & Innovate, The 4th International Conference & Festival of the Electronic Literature Organization, taking place at Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, USA, June 3-6, 2010.

A portion of CityFish was presented as a work-in-progress at Interventions: Literary Practice at the Edge: A Gathering, at The Banff Centre, Banff, Alberta, Canada, February 18, 2010. Some of the videos in CityFish were edited during the Bable Babble Rabble: On Language and Art thematic residency at The Banff Centre in 2006. A very, very, very early web-based version of CityFish was presented in an exhibition called ISWAS, at the Bavarian American Hotel in Nuremberg, Germany, July 1998. That version was based on a very short story written the year previous, which was based on a drawing I have no recollection of drawing, which I had made into a rubber stamp at least fifteen years ago now. The title, CityFish, refers to the City Mouse, Country Mouse fable written by Aesop in the mid-sixth century BC in ancient Greece. I had hoped to have CityFish finished in time to present it at AI_ELO in full and in person, but having been in the works for twenty-seven centuries already, it may take a few more months to complete.

CityFish || J. R. Carpenter

Part parable, part picture book, CityFish combines contemporary short fiction and hypermedia storytelling forms. A girl named Lynne spends her winters living with her mother in a small fishing village called Brooklyn, Nova Scotia, and her summers visiting her mother’s family in Queens, New York.

Lynne and her mother lived in half a clapboard house that had long ago staggered, stooped and settled where it fell, alongside a salt-parched road that backed up a hill and away from a fishing village called Brooklyn. Not the real Brooklyn; Brooklyn, Nova Scotia. No one fished from the wharf at Brooklyn anymore. No one lived in the other half of the clapboard house. No one Lynne knew had ever been anywhere.
J. R. Carpenter, CityFish [beta]

Also launching at AI_ELO, Electronic Literature Collection Volume Two, edited by Rita Raley, Talan Memmott, Brian Kim Stefans and Laura Borràs Castanyer. I have two works in this collection: Entre Ville, and in absentia, and one work in its predecessor, Electronic Literature Collection Volume One, edited by N. Katherine Hayles, Nick Montfort, Scott Rettberg and Stephanie Strickland.

Story Generation(s) Launching at PW10, Arnolfini, Bristol

Categories:  electronic literature, exhibition, festival, launch
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Sotry Generation(s) - J. R. CarpenterI am pleased to announce the launch of Story Generation(s) at PW10 Performance Writing Weekend at Arnolfini, Bristol, May 8-9, 2010. Story Generation(s) are a series of short fictions generated by Python scripts adapted (with permission) from two 1k story generators written by Nick Montfort: http://grandtextauto.org/2008/11/30/three-1k-story-generators/ .

I began tinkering with these story generators in June 2009. There are currently three stories in the series: Excerpts from the Chronicles of Pookie & JR, I’ve Died and Gone to Devon and Auto-Autobiography. This will be their first public exhibition.

Excerpts from the Chronicles of Pookie & JR documents my adventures with Ingrid Bachmann’s hermit crab Pookie, also known as Pookie 14, during June of 2009. Of Excerpts from the Chronicles of Pookie & JR, Nick Montfort writes:

“J. R. Carpenter, author of Words the Dog Knows, Entre Ville, The Cape, and other fine works of e-lit, print, and xerography, has delightfully re-purposed one of my 1k story generators to have it tell stories involving her and a hermit crab named Pookie. The program has grown to about 2k, but it uses the same simple (and surprisingly effective) method as my first generator does: It simply removes all but 5-9 sentences from a sequence, eliding some of what’s been written. Sometimes the reader is left to wonder who the hermit is.” Nick Montfort, http://nickm.com/post/2009/07/story-generation-with-pookie-and-jr/

In July 2009, NYC-based artist/programmer Ravi Rajakumar ported the Python script into Javascript to create this web browser friendly version of the Chronicles of Pookie & JR: http://luckysoap.com/pookieandjr/index.html

Here’s a screenshot from the Rajakumar iteration:

Excerpts from the Chronicles of Pookie & JR

DOWNLOAD PookieAndJR.py

I’ve Died and Gone to Devon re-purposes the same Python script as Excerpts from theChronicles of Pookie & JR to tell (and retell) the story of an arrival and first impression of Devon. Most of the sentences in this story were adapted from Twitter posts written during a five-week visit to Devon, August – September, 2009.
Here is one example of a story generated byI’ve Died and Gone to Devon:

I’ve died and gone to Devon.

In North America, roads this narrow wouldn’t even count as driveways.

If this is the wrong side of the road, I don’t care what’s right.

If this is the driveway, then I can’t wait to see the house.

We can’t hear the river from the house, but we can see it.

Everybody insists we’re by the seaside. I can smell but not see the sea.

Flotsam on a tidal river is a strange mixture of oak leaves and seaweed.

This is an achingly beautiful place to come across a little death.

DOWNLOAD Devon.py

Auto-Autobiography adapts a different Python story generator script by Montfort to generate a quasi-autobiographical story by segments. This script chooses sentences from pools of stock autobiographical statements: “I was born…” I come from…” “In retrospect…” This format was suggested to me by a passage from Anne-Marie MacDonald’s novel, As The Crow Flies:

“If you move around all your life, you can’t find where you come from on a map. All those places where you lived are just that: places. You don’t come from any of them; you come from a series of events. And those are mapped in memory. Contingent, precarious events, without the counterpane of place to muffle the knowledge of how unlikely we are. Almost not born at every turn. Without a place, events slow-tumbling through time become your roots. Stories shading into one another. You come from a plane crash. From a war that brought your parents together.”
Anne-Marie MacDonald, As The Crow Flies, Toronto: Knopf, 2003, page 36.

The notion of autobiographical veracity is undermined in Auto-Autobiography, by leaving key gender signifiers such as Mother/Father to computational chance.
Here is one example of a story generated by Auto-Autobiography:

Here is my story:

I was born in wedlock – for some reason, this surprises me.

I come from a war that brought my parents together.

My mother had a long memory and a short fuse.

I live in a wonderful house.

I work hard at not having to work too hard.

I wish I’d said that differently.

My best friend kept insisting I learn to play guitar.

In retrospect, she read way too many Russian novels.

I love it when we lie in bed plotting the downfall of our enemies.

Next year, let’s forget every single thing we learned this year.

In future, we will know many beginnings and no ends.

DOWNLOAD autobio.py

Viewing Instructions:

Download the python file to your desktop and unzip. On a Mac or Linux system, you can run the story generator by opening a Terminal Window, typing “cd Desktop”, and typing “python filename.py”. Hint: look for Terminal in your Utilities folder. These Python story generator runs on Windows, too, but you will probably need to install Python first: version 2.6.5. Once Python is installed you can double click on the file and it will automatically launch and run in the terminal window. Every time you press ENTER a new version of the story will appear.

LANCEMENT – LE LIVRE DE CHEVET

Categories:  huit quartiers du sommeil, launch
Tags: , , , , , ,

If I were in Montreal tomorrow evening, Wednesday, November 11, from 5 pm to midnight, I would be at Librairie Le Port de Tête (262 Mont-Royal E) for the long awaited launch of Le Livre de Chevet. In English, this book might go by the name The Bedtime Book of Falling Asleep. In it are gathered powerfully hypnotic, narcotic and somnambulic texts from 24 writers. I have contributed a text called Les huits quartiers de sommeil. Those of you already familiar with La Table de Matières productions (design by Feed) will have an inkling of how gorgeous this book is. www.latabledesmatieres.com

Le mercredi 11 novembre prochain, de 17h00 à minuit, LE LIVRE DE CHEVET, troisième et ultime ouvrage de la collection La table des matières, apparaîtra de ce côté ci du sommeil, au Port de tête, librairie sise au 262, Avenue du Mont-Royal Est. Il est publié à l’enseigne du Quartanier.

Vous êtes conviés à son lancement, qui est aussi celui de deux ouvrages amis, et anglais, EXPEDITIONS OF A CHIMAERA, livre bicéphale de Oana Avisilichioaei et Erin Moure, et THE ROSE CONCORDANCE, d’Angela Carr, tous deux publiés par l’éditeur torontois BookThug. Si LE LIVRE DE CHEVET était anglais, il s’intitulerait THE BEDTIME BOOK OF FALLING ASLEEP, mais non.

Quelques précisions et encouragements: il y a deux années et demi que je travaille à la réalisation, avec mes complices du studio FEED, du LIVRE DE CHEVET. L’ouvrage, qui fait suite à CITÉ SELON, sur la ville (il faut bien habiter quelque part) et LA TABLE DES MATIÈRES, sur la nourriture (il est mieux de manger quelque chose) est encore une fois consacré à un sujet véritablement universel, accessible à tous, grand public et tout : dormir. Les deux ouvrages précédents se sont mérités quelques trophées de design, ce qui aide ou n’aide pas les ventes, on ne le sait pas vraiment.

Lorsqu’elle se penche sur des sujets d’intérêt public comme le sommeil, la littérature, contrairement à ce que l’élite populiste voudrait nous faire croire, apparaît comme l’affaire de tout le monde. Vous entendez le langage passer en vous? Maintenant, voyez comme il peut avoir fière allure, lorsque vous vous y attardez un peu plus. D’ailleurs, le conseil d’administration de La table des matières croit fermement que tout le monde, et surtout les insomniaques, peut trouver son compte dans LE LIVRE DE CHEVET: le livre, dont le papier est doux comme la lumière d’une veilleuse, plaira même à ceux qui préfèrent ne pas lire.

LE LIVRE DE CHEVET, comme une princesse de conte, a sommeillé longtemps, s’additionnant peu à peu la substance rêvée de 24 textes, librement associés à 12 collages (Annie Descôteaux) et 12 dessins (Pol Turgeon), 2 paysages improbables (Annie D et Pol T), 2 schémas, 4 photos (Daniel Canty) et 24 calligraphies (Léon Lo), le tout distribué sur 240 pages dont la substance emprunte à celles du jour et de la nuit. Vous verrez. Les littérateurs vous l’avaient dit: la nuit est parfois d’encre. Et on verra, grâce au LIVRE DE CHEVET, qu’elle sait tomber partout, même entre les pages d’un livre. Les fantasmes d’un pornocrate sans emploi, dans un cahier à la tranche scellée, étanche à la curiosité infantile (sauf si l’enfant est habile et sait manier le couteau), complètent le tout.

LE LIVRE DE CHEVET ressemble à un livre pour enfant qui aurait grandi, mais qui se souvient, oh se souvient, des nuits passées à rêver la vie à venir, à la lumière d’une lampe de poche.

La lumière est comme de l’encre.
Tout ce que je dis est vrai.
Vous êtes des dormeurs.
Soyez des nôtres.

//Lancement//
-
LE LIVRE DE CHEVET
EXPEDITIONS OF A CHIMAERA
THE ROSE CONCORDANCE
-
De 17h à minuit, le mercredi 11 novembre,
au Port de Tête, 262, Mont-Royal est
Lectures entre 19h et 20h
Concert de fin de soirée: 44 Ensemble
-
Visitez www.latabledesmatieres.com


. . . . .

Book Launch Tonight: Leonard Cohen You’re Our Man

Categories:  launch, poetry, reading
Tags: , , , , ,

I have a poem in this fine book. If I were in Montreal I’d be reading at the launch tonight. If you happen to be in Montreal, check it out.

7:30 PM
Thursday, Sept. 17, 2009
Westmount High School Auditorium
4350 Ste. Catherine St. West
Westmount/Montreal, Quebec
Tickets are $5 and available at the door.
Doors open at 7 P.M.

Poets reading tonight include:

Ann Weinstein, Jason Camlot, Ann Lloyd, David Solway, Donna Yates-Adelman, Michael Mirolla, Jeffrey Mackie, Angela Leuck, John Fretz, Grace Moore, Meredith Darling, Rona Feldman Shefler(a classmate of Cohen’s,) Sue Borgersen(arriving today from Nova Scotia,) erika n. white, Sandra Sjollema, Ryan Ruddick(Westmount High teacher,) Brian Campbell, and Eleni Zisimatos, Ehab Lotayef, Lesley Pasquin, and standing in for Margaret Atwood will be Westmount High Student, Elisha Hill, reading Atwood’s poem, “Setting Leonard to Music.”

Proceeds from this event will support the Foundation for Public Poetry’s “Leonard Cohen Poet-In-Residence” program at Westmount High(Cohen’s old high school.) This initiative is a collaboration between Westmount High School, the Foundation for Public Poetry, and the Westmount High Alumni Association.

Books are $25 and will be available for sale and signing.

More info: http://publicpoetry.wordpress.com/
. . . . .

Book Launch – Art Textiles of the World: Canada

Categories:  launch, publication, writing
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A recent essay by J.R. Carpenter entitled “Mapping Multiplicities: A Narrative of Contingences” has just been published in a new art book, launching on Wednesday, April 15, 2009, at the Montreal Centre for Contemporary Textiles, 5800 St-Denis Studio 501, Montréal, at 5 pm.

Art Textiles of the World: Canada features essays by Alan Elder, Sandra Alfoldy, J.R. Carpenter, and Lisa Vinebaum, with a foreword by the Editor. The book is devoted especially to the work of twenty important Canadian artists who have developed a very personal language through their mastery of one or more of the various techniques in the field of textiles. The artists presented in the book are:

Jennifer Angus, Ingrid Bachmann, Sandra Brownlee, Dorothy Caldwell, Lyn Carter, Kai Chan, Barb Hunt, Barbara Layne, Louise Lemieux Bérubé, Marcel Marois, Mindy Yan Miller, Lesley Richmond, Ruth Scheuing, Joanne Soroka, Joanna Staniszkis, Patrick Traer, Barbara Todd, Laura Vickerson, Yvonne Wakabayashi and Susan Warner Keene.

From April 15 to May 22, 2009, the Montreal Centre for Contemporary Textiles (MCCT) will take advantage of the publishing of this prestigious book to bring together in its gallery examples of the work of these artists. The art works are varied: murals, sculptures, installations created through the use of new technologies, of traditional techniques and of unusual materials. It is a must-see inventory of creative contemporary Canadian textile art on show until May 22.

The launching of the book and the exhibition will be held on Wednesday, April 15, 2009, at Montreal Centre for Contemporary Textiles, 5800 St-Denis Studio 501, Montréal, at 5 pm.
. . . . .

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

Categories:  launch, reading, Words the Dog Knows
Tags: , , , , , , ,

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!
. . . . .

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
. . . . .

New York City Launch – Words the Dog Knows – KGB Bar, October 23, 2008

Categories:  launch, reading, Words the Dog Knows
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

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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