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    Predigital Typographic Wonders

    by Phil - 0 Comment(s)

    The Honey Pot, by Alan Riddell, 1969Since the grand opening of Loft 112 it seems that the center for writers and artists has something great going on every night. Whether it's musical performance, comedy show, literary reading, or just hanging out in a place with good vibes, the Loft certainly seems to be the creative hive it was opened to become. This Friday, June 27, Loft 112 is hosting what looks to be an extra special event:

    MICHAEL MORRIS: ARE WORDS THINGS?

    "The Vancouver-based painter, photographer, performance artist and curator Michael Morris will speak about concrete poetry and the creation of the mail art archive Image Bank and other networks. This event is free and open to all, starts at 5:30 p.m., and will be followed by a reception."


    Before going any further I should mention that the beautiful piece of typewriter art to the right (The Honey Pot, 1969) is not the work of Michael Morris, but Alan Riddell. For a look at Morris' beautiful work, go here. I've thrown The Honey Pot in here to show my all-time favorite piece of concrete poetry and to celebrate the 2014 publication of 'Typewriter Art: a modern anthology'. The library copy of this long-awaited collection of poetry and art created entirely using typewriters will be here soon and I wanted to make sure all concrete poetry/typewriter art lovers out there had a heads-up...

    In this book readers will find not only Alan Riddell's beautiful Honey Pot, but also more than a century's worth of the most innovative, interesting, and beautiful pieces of typewriter art from all over the world. From the butterfly of Flora F.F. Stacey (1898) all the way up to the impossibly fluid work of Stephanie Strange.

    Also included is the work of Calgary Poet Laureate derek beaulieu, who, as this blog comes full circle, is a volunteer on the team that turns the wheel of Loft 112 and likely had something to do with the visit of Michael Morris. According to the anthology, beaulieu is "currently archiving a great many examples of typewriter/visual poetry" in order to salvage so much of the work that only appeared in obscure journals in the 1960s and 70s.

    Typewriter Art: a modern anthology



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    Back from New York

    by Phil - 0 Comment(s)

    What do two shy editors, one 800-kilometre Camino de Santiago explorer and a 240-pound tattooed motorcyclist have in common? These Calgary authors – Naomi K. Lewis, Rona Altrows, Patricia Klinck and Robert Chomany – have just won awards for their books in New York City from two of the biggest book award programs in the world. Come see the books and hear the authors on Tuesday, June 24, 7pm at Shelf Life Books (4th Street and 13th Avenue SW).

    Calgary publisher and writer Tag Goulet will emcee the evening, presenting the three award-winning authors who will talk about their books. Bob Chomany will talk about BawB’s Raven Feathers. Patricia Klinck will read from Each Step is the Journey: The Call of the Camino. Editors Naomi K. Lewis and Rona Altrows and will present Shy: An Anthology.

    Shy: An Anthology, edited by Naomi K. Lewis and Rona Altrows

    The pages of this anthology are filled with personal essays and poems of thoughtful musings, raw memories, and humorous self-examinations by authors and poets who have been labelled by the world—teachers, parents, and peers—as shy. Here, they proudly own up to their shyness, and their message is clear: they don’t need to be “cured”! Why should they, when nearly half of North Americans consider themselves shy? Editors Naomi K. Lewis and Rona Altrows have enlisted writers from across the continent and have created a moving anthology that will appeal to all, either because we are shy or because we know someone who is.

    Tied for silver in the Anthology section of the Independent Publisher Book Awards

    Each Step is the Journey: The Call of the Camino, by Patricia Klinck

    The origins of the Camino de Santiago cannot be found in books. Its story is woven from legends and myths told by the ancients over the centuries and retold by pilgrims. Those who answer its call are often in search of a greater good, a more powerful truth, a fuller understanding. But what is its true meaning? What can this age-old pilgrimage—declared the first European Cultural Route and a UNESCO World Heritage Site—offer us in the twenty-first century?

    Winner of Best Cover Design, Non-Fiction at the Next Generation Indies Awards

    Also available from the library as an OverDrive eBook

    Bawb’s Raven Feathers, by Bob Chomany

    In 2008, a 6’4”, 240-pound tattoo-covered bike enthusiast (whose hobby is “wrenching on motorcycles”) signed up for Facebook. Like many of us, Robert Chomany was disappointed by the daily drab of “what I had for breakfast” and complaints about the weather. Unlike most of us, he was determined to make his page a better place. He decided he would try to put smiles on his readers’ faces each day with his pure and simple inspirational poetic musings. As the days, months and years passed, his audience began asking when the book would be coming out, and soon after that, Bawb’s Raven Feathers was born. In fact, three volumes have been quietly published and a fourth is due out soon.

    Finalist in Best Cover Design, Non-Fiction at the Next Generation Indies Awards


    For a complete list of all the great literary action hosted by Shelf Life check out their current list of upcoming events.

    Alberta's Best

    by Phil - 1 Comment(s)

    Winners of the of the Alberta Literary Awards and the Alberta Book Publishing Awards were announced at the Alberta Book Awards Gala here in Calgary on Friday, June 6 at The Fairmont Palliser Hotel. The gala also featured the presentation of the Alberta Reader's Choice Award. After all the votes were tallied Alberta readers chose Calgary author Tyler Trafford's Almost A Great Escape, which also took home the Wilfrid Eggleston Award for Nonfiction. The Calgary Herald offers a complete roundup of all last week's winners.

    R. Ross Annett Award for Children's Literature


    Karen Bass - Graffiti Knight

    Hazel Hutchins - The Great Bike Rescue

    Gail Sidonie Sobat - Not With A Bang

    Georges Bugnet Award for Fiction

    Ali Bryan - Roost

    Lynn Coady - Hellgoing

    Theresa Shea - The Unfinished Child

    Wilfrid Eggleston Award for Nonfiction

    Jessica Kluthe - Rosina, The Midwife

    Tyler Trafford - Almost A Great Escape

    Chris Turner - The War on Science

    Stephan G. Stephansson Award for Poetry

    Tim Bowling - Selected Poems

    David Dowker & Christine Stewart - Virtualis: Topologies of the Unreal

    Paul Zits - Massacre Street

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