Kingston Radio Promo

As part of the promotion for our upcoming Kingston reading, four of the five passengers of the Accord will be appearing on “Finding a Voice,” Bruce Kauffman’s radio show on CFRC. You can find the full details here. We’re up this coming Friday afternoon, 5:00-6:00pm. Tune in at 4:00pm to hear the host of the Interim Reading Series, Michael Casteels, talk about all the wonderful writing and publishing things that he has his hands in.

Thanks, Bruce!

On the Road Again

Michael Casteels, poet behind the excellent Puddles of Sky Press, has started a new reading series in Kingston, and he invited some Ottawa poets to take part. The Interim Reading Series is very kindly hosting our modest Accord of Poets in February.

The Interim Reading Series: Justin Million, jesslyn delia smith, Jeff Blackman, Rachael Simpson, and Cameron Anstee

Saturday February 28, 2015, 3pm

99 York St., Kingston Ontario

The event is free, but donations will be accepted to pay venue fees. Facebook event here.

It would be great to see anyone within reasonable driving distance to Kingston. I only hear good things about Kingston’s scene, and am excited to read there for the first time. Copies of Five will be on hand, but it’ll be neat to hear new work that has developed since.

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Load up the Accord, boys. Not pictured: snow, winter coats, boots.

Roman Feuilleton, Take Two

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Last June I had the opportunity to read as part of Roman Feuilleton. Next week, a number of the original participants are back together to revive the literary side of the project as part of Ottawa’s venerable AB Series. I’ve been reworking the poems that I presented the first time around, and am looking forward to seeing how the rest of the pieces have changed in the intervening months. I am also looking forward to seeing Ian Ferrier perform.

You can see photos of Michèle Provost’s art show Roman Feuilleton at her website here.

Andrew Steeves on Attention

[…] for me what it all comes down to is paying attention. And I think that publishing is all about paying attention in the same way that reading is all about paying attention. It is about understanding the materials you are working with and the way they function in the world. (129)

Steeves, Andrew. “The Ecology of Publishing: An Interview.” Smoke Proofs: Essays on Literary Publishing, Printing & Typography. Kentville NS: Gaspereau Press, 2014.

Go read this book if you care about publishing, book design, the book as an object and technology in the world, or enjoy clear and thoughtful essays that think through the responsibilities and implications of cultural (and manual) labour.

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Year in Review

A self-centred stock-taking of things literary and academic at the end of 2014.

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On the academic side, I published my first peer-reviewed article (“‘I made my great entry–flanked': Irving Layton’s Collaborators at McClelland & Stewart (1959-1964).” Canadian Poetry: Studies, Documents, Reviews 73 (Fall/Winter 2013): 102-122.). Another has been accepted and is forthcoming in the online journal Amodern sometime in January (“‘setting widespread precedent': The Canada Council for the Arts and the Funding of Poetry Readings in Canada (1957-1977)).” A third has just gone through revise and resubmit and I sit here waiting on news. My dissertation proposal was accepted (“Make Contact: Contributive Bookselling and the Small Press in Canada after the Second World War”). I made some measurable progress on the first chapter and feel optimistic about writing in 2015. I co-organized UofO’s Department of English Graduate Conference (The Page: Visual and Material Literature) where I presented a paper on Barbara Caruso and her Seripress collaborations with bpNichol. I presented two other conference papers–one on Nelson Ball‘s poetry and book selling at ACCUTE/Congress, and one on William Hoffer‘s book catalogues at The Prestige of Literature (Carleton University). Those two were the first times I have presented work from the future dissertation. I also taught my own course for the first time.

On the literary side, the year started out with a number of short poems being published in the 10th issue of ottawater (the 11th should be along any day now). I participated in Michèle Provost’s Roman Feuilleton show in June, and more recently read at the NAC Fourth Stage as part of the Tonight on our Stage variety show. Both were wonderful (and new) experiences. I went on tour with Jeff Blackman, jesslyn delia smith, Rachael Simpson, and Justin Million, and published a first trade book through Apt. 9 to mark the occasion: Five. Apt. 9 also published amazing chapbooks from Nelson Ball, Beth Follett, Ben Ladouceur, and Dave Currie. Christine McNair’s Apt. 9 chapbook from 2013 also landed on the bpNichol Chapbook Award shortlist. Baseline Press accepted a chapbook of mine for publication in Fall 2015. Chaudiere Books accepted The Collected Poems of William Hawkins, a book I edited gradually over the last four years, for publication in Spring 2015. And just last week, I received my contributor copies of illiterature from Puddles of Sky. I love this little magazine and am thrilled to finish off 2014 with an appearance in it. Poems were slow, but do still arrive.

Thanks for everything 2014. See you on the other side.

Nelson Ball & Barbara Caruso / Home Project / A Photo Documentary

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Left: a portrait of Nelson Ball by Barbara Caruso, distributed with Ball’s “Force Movements” (Ganglia, 1969). We used this portrait for the cover of Nelson’s Minutiae (Apt. 9 Press, 2014). Right: Caruso’s artist’s proof for the cover of Ball’s The Pre-Linguistic Heights (Coach House, 1970).

Catherine Stevenson recently completed a 14-month project with Nelson Ball to photograph and document Nelson’s home, the one he shared with his wife, artist Barbara Caruso, from 1985-2009. Nelson Ball still lives in the building, a four-story office building in Paris, Ontario that the two converted into a living space, bookstore, and art studio.

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Barbara Caruso’s journals, published in two volumes by Mercury Press (“A Painter’s Journey”), a book of her essays (“Wording the Silent Art”) also published by Mercury, and an issue of Open Letter dedicated to her work (edited by bpNichol).

Titled “Nelson Ball & Barbara Caruso / Home Project / A Photo Documentary,” the film is beautifully paced, with Nelson’s text (including some poems) interspersed between Catherine’s photographs of each part of the building.

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Nelson Ball books on my shelves.

It is an amazing record of a space shared by two wonderful artists, writers, booksellers, and partners. It is well worth your time. Please watch it:

Nelson also recently published an excellent new trade collection, Some Mornings, through Mansfield Press. Go buy it!