Saturday, June 21, 2008


Hey all,

I thought I'd take a moment to recount some recent doings, some to-ings and fro-ings, mostly because I haven't had the chance to walk in the forest and so don't have any new mushroom pics to post.

I spent much of this week in recovery from last, where I wrote three articles and worked two days. Plus a birthday party for Aa and several father's day celebrations.

But I got to write about Gwen Smid's Mary's Atlas: Mary Meets Manitoba and Gary Hyland's Love of Mirrors (though due to illness I wasn't able to interview Hyland but Robert Currie, current SK Poet Laureate and Hyland's great friend, spoke on his behalf...) for Prairie Books Now.

I also got this nifty bag by way of one of M's WFP assignments. A woman from Niverville is making/auctioning them and then donating the proceeds to a UN charity for Darfur. Her bags are beautiful and she writes well, too, both on her bag blog and on her other one.

In other news, Aqua Books is well on it's way to all - the - books - on - all - the - shelves. It's slow going, because in the midst of shelving, we're also selling the books already-on-shelves and running events. And also we had to vacuum and damp-mop the main room three times before we could even get to the boxes, because the tin-ceiling-saga meant that there were extra paint chips and dust on top of the usual reno mess.

But we had two excellent events this week, one to celebrate Anita Daher's stint as Aqua's inaugural Writer-in-Residence and the other a book launch of Zach Wells' Jailbreaks anthology of contemporary Canadian sonnets. Sonneteer!

Especially fun was the fact that Anita decided that she would read from one of the fainting couches in the events rooms instead of from the podium...and that Kelly introduced her from the other. And they were dreadful hams as they laid there, head to head, but it was also great fun. And then there was cake!

Soon, all we'll be doing is selling books and food and running events. As much as Aqua's loyal customers can't wait, we at Aqua really can't wait...

In other other news, I had two very big writing-related happenings these past two weeks.

First off, I'm going to the Sage Hill Poetry Colloquium this summer, specifically July 21-31. I was hoping to also take in the Moose Jaw Festival of Words, which happens the weekend before SH starts, but I don't think it's going to work, given how childcare seems to be shaking out.

Oh, the number of favours I'm going to have to ask of people... shudder!

I'm exceedingly excited to work with Daphne Marlatt, the colloquium instructor, and also to meet the other writers. And if the writing's not coming and Marlatt and I hate each other on sight/site, then at least I can spend two weeks walking the Qu'Appelle Valley, shooting.

In preparation for SH, I've been re-reading, first the manuscript of travel poetry I'll be working on there and then also Marlatt's The Given.

The other happening? Well, I got the rejection letter in the mail from Brick Books for Hump. Which I'd been expecting, really, as they're one of Canada's premier publishers of poetry, but I was still hoping...though oddly, I don't feel sad about the rejection. I keep checking my emotional temperature Not sad.

It helped, I think, that they said nice things in the rejection letter, though I have to say that I'm bad at decoding pseudo-compliments. Face value, I say! Face value...

I'll send out the manuscript again soon and begin the waiting game again.

My currently-out-to-lit-mags pile is also getting rather slim, so I'll have to put together some new submissions, both from the travel ms. and from Hump.

Well, I only have an hour before M gets home with the girl, so I should probably get to work, but I hope you're all well...



Polly said...

Thanks for the update!

Congrats on going to Sage Hill - rock on! Sorry to hear Brick won't be publishing, but look forward to hearing who will...

Ariel Gordon said...

Hey Polly,

Thanks for dropping by...wanna reciprocate on your (much-neglected) blog?

In regards to the "look forward to hearing who will"...yah, me too.