The program books for THIN AIR, the Winnipeg International Writers Festival, are out in the wild!
I’m so pleased to be able to say I’ve been invited back to participate in the 20th anniversary of the festival.
Manitoba’s amazing community of writers is the focus of our twentieth anniversary gala. Ten writers share their own new work, along with work by ten writers who have helped put Manitoba on the map. Hear what’s happening now, along with the words of Gabrielle Roy, Marvin Francis, Robert Kroetsch, Wayne Tefs, Michael Van Rooy, Sheldon Oberman, Louis Riel, Todd Bruce, Margaret Laurence, and Carol Shields. Celebrating Manitoba—in words! Books available for purchase on-site.
Hope to see you there (and around the Festival)!
So roughly a third of Canada’s population watched the final concert by The Tragically Hip. I imagine it’ll be talked about for some time yet. Lots has been said about what the band has meant to Canadian identity, I’m still processing what a band I’d largely left behind in my post-university days–but still listened to and enjoyed whenever we crossed paths–means to me. All I know for sure was that I wasn’t emotionally up for watching the concert. A feeling I’ll maybe regret in days down the road, not sharing the night with friends, but I just couldn’t do it.
I did stay up, unable to sleep, imagining the perfect set list, and thinking of them playing “Fiddler’s Green.”
His tiny knotted heart
Well, I guess it never worked to good
The timber tore apart
And the water gorged the wood
You can hear her whispered prayer
For men at masts that always lean
The same wind that moves her hair
Moves her boy through Fiddler’s Green
When Words Collide is always a highlight of my convention schedule, and this year it has the added bonus of hosting the Prix Aurora Awards too. If you’re attending, here’s where to find me in Calgary:
Saturday 11 AM–Bonavista
Myth Adventures (With Apologies to Robert Aspirin!)
Chadwick Ginther, Rhonda Parrish, GMB Chomichuk, Nancy M Bell, S.G. Wong (M)
Myths by any other name…would be stories. This panel will be an exploration with authors and editors of works that use myth (of deities, spirits and creatures—oh my!) woven throughout. Discussion to include how to weave myths into the narrative; how mythologies were chosen for specific works; the myriad aspects of research; how one separates “canonical” myth from rumoured myth; and many more aspects integral to using my
ths successfully within narrative.
Aurora Awards 7PM
Saturday 8PM–Parkland-Bonavista-Willow Park Autograph Session (2 Hours)
Our Festival Guests are joined by 70+ authors. Drop by to meet the authors and get your books signed. This session is open to the public, so tell your friends.
Saturday 10PM (till late)–(Suite 333) The Post-Apocalyptic Four Party
Ryan T. McFadden, E.C. Bell, Randy McCharles, Billie Milholland, Chadwick Ginther
Hang out with the Apocalyptic Four (authors of Women of the Apocalypse,The Puzzle Box, and The 10th Circle Project) & friends (that’s me!). Find out what trouble they’ve been up to lately.
Sunday 1PM–Bonavista Writing Trilogies
Gerald Brandt, Chadwick Ginther, Ryan T. McFadden, Samantha Beiko, Barb Galler-Smith, Susan MacGregor (PM)
Writing a trilogy is the writing equivalent of running a marathon. What are the pros and cons of embarking on such a creative endeavour? Five writers discuss their experiences, focusing on the challenges and benefits from creative, timely, and business perspectives.
Hope to see you there!
How’d I do in July?
Keep my short stories on submission
Proofread the book I finished editing in June and submit the finished book to agents
- First edit pass on the manuscript I finished in May
Write a chapter for An Excuse for Whiskey
Not as great as I’d hoped. A few things came up in August that required more time than I expected. Proofreading went well, I didn’t even find anything major that I wanted to change at the last minute (which is almost scarier than finding I want to make a change). It’s been so long since the last time I queried agents that I basically had to start researching from scratch. I have a top ten list I want to start with and we’ll go from there and see what happens.
We’ll see what happens when I’m done my query letter and synopsis, that is. Both of those have eaten up a lot of my time, because if I can’t nail those, it might not matter how good the manuscript is. Yay, pressure! I feel like I they’re close, but not quite ready to send (and my synopsis is still too long) so no queries went out. I really didn’t want to start editing the next draft until after I’d completely washed my hands of the previous one.
A cool thing I wasn’t expecting: I was asked to mentor a young fantasy writer as a part of ACI Manitoba’s Careers in the Arts Youth Mentorship program. Very exciting! It’s a big commitment, but I would’ve loved to have had access to these programs when I was younger, so I was happy to say yes. This’ll be my second time working with ACI, as I facilitated their teen program a few years ago.
And my goals for August:
- Keep my short stories on submission
- Query agents
- First edit pass on my new manuscript
- Prep for my panels at When Words Collide
- Have fun at When Words Collide, regardless of Prix Aurora results
- Write a chapter for An Excuse for Whiskey
- Discuss Whiskey edits with Sandra Wickham at WWC
- Finish revising a short story I’ve been noodling with and send it out
It’s going to be a bit tight to get through everything, but I’ve got some holidays. Of course I’ve also got an out of town convention in there and a weekend getaway too.