Blog Hop

I was tagged by Judy McFarlane, author of Writing with Grace, to answer some questions in this online world of blog hopping. The challenge? To answer four questions with some semblance of sincerity. Let's see how it worked out.

Giant Ground Sloth shovelling a salad at the Yukon Beringia Interpretive Centre. Big stuff, kids!

Giant Ground Sloth shovelling a salad at the Yukon Beringia Interpretive Centre. Big stuff, kids!

1. What am I working on?

I'm finishing a manuscript with Daniel Zomparelli. It's a collaborative poetry project about romantic comedies. Wooooooo!

I'm also in the early stages of another poetry project called, It's a Big Deal!, which explores ideas of "bigness," from physical, to ideological, to personal. It probably won't be a big deal.

I've also got a collection of short stories that I'm working on. I swear!

Finally, there is a semi-secret project that maybe is video-based that might not work out at all, so if you never hear about it again, just forget that I said anything and never refer to this blog post.

I really want to write a musical, so I hope someday there is a person who knows about music that will not hate working with me. Maybe this person will even love it. I am good at baking, if that helps seal the deal.

2. How does my work differ from others in its genre?

I don't know. It probably doesn't. Poetry comes in so many forms and about so many different subjects. I am just writing some poems. And also fiction. I swear!

3. Why do I write what I do?

I write about the things I'm interested in, like most people. I watch a lot of television and I immerse myself in pop culture and celebrities, so that comes up a lot. I also am always into writing about and poking fun at trends or other pervasive cultural elements that I find absurd or funny. 

These questions are hard. Everything feels personal. Even more personal that talking about body hair removal.

4. How does my writing process work?

Usually, I'm busy, but something gets into my head and I get really excited about it for five seconds and I write down a note or an idea and then think about it a lot until I actually have time to sit down and write something out in full. Then all that re-writing, writing around the idea, mapping out something that ends up being used or not used, self-doubt, crying into beverages, laughing maniacally to myself, breaking to watch an otter video, and then more contemplative rewriting with intermittent elements of all the rest of the embarrassing process. I'm just messing around and taking incomprehensible notes all the time.

I'm supposed to tag two other writers and these two both have new books out or coming out very soon. Get on it, Amy Poehler and Lena Dunham!*  So tag. You're it, writers.

 

*I'm pretty sure I ran out of people I know who have blogs and have not hopped.

 

Smell Like a Celebrity (Wannabe)


Blind Items, the perfume promo based on the book that is also called Blind Items, is here. It's black and white. There is a dog named Jasper in it. His person, Judy, is a star for many reasons. It also features my friend, the writer Kellee Ngan, and her well-hidden daughter Bea. It was directed by filmmaker and writer Shay Wilson and the music was created by the very great lady, Clare Kenny. And all of the sounds were put in place and made excellent by dear Jon Bitze. I thank all of them so hard.

This means that you can buy Blind Items wherever fine books are sold.  And hopefully you can also buy copies at some places that are dodgy. 

Also, Amazon has some pretty crazy ideas about what my book is. I mean, every poetry book is filled with some damn mystery, so I can see where this is going. There are levels of mystery. Still, I hope the description, "An entertaining read, fast and funny with lots of tender moments." is still somewhat true. Thanks NOW Magazine!

 

Neglect

This blog here is a real wasteland. It's like I think I'm too good to update my own blog. I'm not. Really.

Summer has come and gone. Even fall is pretty much dunzo. Winter is here. And throughout all that time I have abandoned this here blog. So sad. I need to upload a Sad Lib so we can work out our feelings on this.

Things. There have been things and activities and events. First I had the wonderful experience of heading to the Whitehorse Poetry Festival. I read with fabulous poets. I was glad to share in their light, and the never-ending daylight of the north. Then the otters and I travelled to the motherland, Trail, BC, and the event I did at The Rex Hotel was fun and heartwarming and crazy. Friends and family in a beer-soaked room with a distinct pegged ceiling and a lot of deep fried party platters? Perfection.

Since last we blogged I've read at WORD, at Douglas College, at the North Vancouver CIty Library, and at Sara Bynoe's infinitely hilarious show, Say Wha?!. And I'll be reading a very unsexy sex scene tomorrow at Fifty Shades of Say Wha?! at Hot Art Wet City. Don't worry if you haven't read any of the Fifty Shades of Grey series, myself, Sara Bynoe, Connie Smudge and Shirley Gnome will read them to you. It'll be like a bedtime story you'll have strange dreams about.

New projects are happening, more on them all soon. Daniel Zomparelli and I are making stuff happen. We also read in UBC's Creative Writing Department and were interviewed on CiTR's Arts Report. Listen here if you're feeling it.

Blind Items, the book of celebrity poems, sexy celebrity poems, sad celebrity poems, freaky celebrity poems, will be out with Insomniac Press in spring 2014. Also, then it will be spring which is going to be great! Sun, daylight, sundresses. Good times.

Sister Love's Travelling Otter Show.

Sister Love's Travelling Otter Show.

If you read this, thanks. 

I guess the best part about this blog is that hardly anyone reads it. So I can say whatever I want.

Fart bomb!

 

Up north! Whitehorse had all the light and poets in June.

Up north! Whitehorse had all the light and poets in June.

Book Birth Announcement (& more)

So much has happened since I last typed things into this little box here. So I'm just gonna cram it all in right now.

The book was birthed into the world and is a real, tangible object. Coping with Emotions and Otters lives! And I read with the other fantastic Talonbooks poets, Stephen Collis, Mariner Janes, Wanda John-Kehewin, and Daphne Marlatt (for reals), 
at the spring launch on April 10 at the Anza Club. 

Then Stephen, Mariner, Wanda and I took off on tour, along with handler and host, Daniel Zomparelli. West Coast represented in the T-Dot at The Garrison. The lovely folks at Librarie Drawn & Quarterly in Montreal wrote this sweet post about us with great photos. And yes, I did encourage attendees to hold hands like loving otters. 

 And because I can't get enough of myself my Vancouver book launch took place April 27 at the fantastic Artspeak in Gastown. The stellar photographer Ash Tanasiychuk took photos of the event, which included an opening number featuring Dave Holmes on guitar while I danced in a furry otter suit, Cynara Geissler, Kellee Ngan and Daniel Zomparelli appeared as guests on the one night only talk show, I Feel You , there were otter masks, an undersea photo booth, kind interjections and commentary from lovely person and host, Sheryda Warrener, and a game show featuring Edmonton Block Heaters' own, Ross Smith, and a party crasher. Yup. Poetry book launch party crashers. Of course there was cake. We're not fools. And I even found time to read some poems. 

Look at that lustrous, shiny coat.

Look at that lustrous, shiny coat.

Reviews have appeared in Poetry Is Dead (the mental health issue is out now) and Eclectic Ruckus. And even a shout out in my home town paper, The Trail Daily Times. 

And I became an aunt for the first time. Sophia Del Bucchia is already proving to be a marketing genius.  

Then this week the infomercial was the Video of the Week on Open Book Toronto. I feel like a liberated princess riding a white tiger into a candy forest. 

Next I head to the Whitehorse Poetry Festival. But first I will watch the season finale of Game of Thrones, and more Maron and probably a lot of other television too, and hopefully get to the beach to read books. You know. Summer, hurry your ass up. Summer also means more sundresses! Take that, pants, you fascists!

 

A young Peggy Olson at work on a book ad campaign. 

A young Peggy Olson at work on a book ad campaign. 

The Infomercial

Not sure if you want to read poems about emotions and otters? Your reservations are understandable. It's ok. I still like you. Everyone is nervous about something, sometimes.

So, to entice you I, and some very lovely friends, made this video.  We even have the Shorter Oxford in there, so you're know we're serious and professional.  

For the full effect watch in HD.

And yes, I am still wearing a dress. 

The First Review

The first review of Coping with Emotions and Otters is here and it looks a little something like this. I read the whole thing and I didn't barf or anything. I mean, I'm still alive and I even ate breakfast right after I laid eyes on it. 

Thanks Vancouver Weekly and Chris Shalom. 

And just because it's adorable and literary here's the Bookish Otter print from trafalgarssquare on Etsy. You know you want to hang this near your library. Or gift it to me. Either or!

"Bookish Otter" from trafalgarsquare on Etsy. 

"Bookish Otter" from trafalgarsquare on Etsy. 

I am wearing a dress

Photo: Ruth Skinner

Photo: Ruth Skinner

Just so you know we can trust each other in this whole website thing we've got ourselves wrapped up in, I am indeed wearing a dress. Accessorized with an otter. This is photographic evidence. I'm not lying to you. I suppose I might have to alter that statement, if say I am not wearing a dress. But we'll cross that bridge when we come to it. That seems like the most reasonable course of action. 

I guess what I'm trying to say is, welcome to my new website. If I could offer you a drink or some cookies, I would. But there are barriers. Distance, time and space, potential allergies.

Let's leave it at that for now. Hi. Welcome. Have a swell day.