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Freelance lance November/December 2010 Volume 39 Number 6

Congratulations to Mansel Robinson whose play Two Rooms received First Prize in the 2010 John V. Hicks Long Manuscript Awards.

November/December 2010

SWG Freelance


Features President's Report


Executive Director's Report




New Poet Laureate


Saskatoon Shenanigans


Profile: David Kyle


2010/2011 Board of Directors


Publishing Miracles


The Space-Time Continuum


Fall Conference


Before the Guild


Saskatchewan Writers' Guild membership fees are $75 per year ($55 for full-time students or seniors). Membership (with full voting privileges) is open to writers or other individuals with an interest in writing, reading, or the oral tradition of literature.

MFA in Writing at U of S


And Another Thing ...


Freelance ISSN 0705-1379

The Reason Why


Books by Members




Volume 39 Number 6 November/December 2010 SWG STAFF Executive Director: Judith Silverthorne Education and Publications Officer, and Freelance Managing Editor: Beth McLean Finance Officer: Sharon Johnson Program Officer: Tracy Hamon (Regina) Program Coordinator: Pam Bustin (Saskatoon) Administrative Assistant: Milena Dzordeski

Freelance is published six times per year for members of the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild. Submissions to Freelance are welcome for editorial review. If accepted, articles will be edited for clarity. The basic criteria to meet in submitting materials are readership interest, timeliness, and quality. Viewpoints expressed in contributed articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the position of the SWG. Copyright remains with the writer and cannot be reprinted without permission. Services advertised are not necessarily endorsed by the SWG. Payment for reports and articles is $80 per printed page. Deadline for Freelance copy is the 1st of the month prior to the month of publication.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS Cathy Fenwick, President, Regina George Khng, Saskatoon Danica Lorer, Maidstone R. P. MacIntyre, La Ronge Scott Miller, Estevan Martine NoĂŤl-Maw, Regina Marilyn Poitras, Saskatoon Kelly-Anne Riess, Regina Lisa Wilson, Saskatoon Jerry Haigh, Past President, Saskatoon Ex-Officio: Judith Silverthorne Mailing Address: Saskatchewan Writers' Guild Box 3986, Regina, SK S4P 3R9

We gratefully acknowledge the support of SaskCulture, Saskatchewan Lotteries Trust Fund and the Saskatchewan Arts Board

Courier or Drop-off Address: 205–2314 11th Avenue Regina, SK S4P 0K1 Phone: (306)757-6310 Toll Free: 1-800-667-6788 Fax: (306)565-8554 Email: or Website: 2

SWG Freelance

November/December 2010

PRESIDENT'S REPORT In this, my first report as your board president, I want to send a huge “THANK YOU” to the planning team who worked on the 2010 Fall Conference and AGM—fantastic job. I also want to thank you, members of the Guild, for electing me to represent you as board president. Looking back at the conference and looking ahead to the legacy of good governance that I hope to build on, I am reminded of the importance of teamwork in making all good things possible. The conference planning team’s goal was to present the best possible conference and celebration of our 40th anniversary, and to acknowledge the people who came together to create the SWG, the first of its kind in Canada and—dare I say it—the best.

I was reminded of a group of people I met at a team building workshop I presented a few years ago. This group of five young men were part of a larger group of federal government employees, who were participants in the workshop. Each small group represented employees from a different government department. Early in the day I asked each group to tell us what was the mission statement of the department and division in which they worked. One of this small group of young men, members of the Department of National Defence, Search and Rescue, stood up and loudly declared that their team mission statement was, “So that others might live.” I still get goose-bumps.

who believes strongly in the power of stories, spoke at the Festival of Words in Moose Jaw last July about the importance of stories. He said, “Without stories a culture fades into silence.” Art and culture is the soul of a nation and here in Saskatchewan we have some of the best writers in the world. This year alone, three Saskatchewan writers, Sandra Birdsell, Dianne Warren and Allan Casey, were finalists for the Governor General's Literary Awards, with Dianne being awarded the Governor General's Literary Award for Fiction, Allan Casey, the Award for Non-Fiction and Coteau Books for Children’s Literature category. Dianne Warren’s book Cool Water is on the long-list for the Giller Prize. Two of our SWG members, Sandra Birdsell and Glen Sorestad, were appointed Members of the Order of Canada. Saskatchewan writers are recognized and published on every continent; we must be doing something right. I believe it’s because of the strong team spirit that is apparent among board members, staff, committees, volunteers, SWG members, literary agents, writers, editors, publishers and groups that offer financial support.

The mission statement for the SWG could be paraphrased as “So that others might create.” (Check our web site for a complete description of the vision, mission and values of our organization.) Our stories are creations that help us to better understand ourselves, understand each other and understand the world. Theodor Reik wrote, “I am of the opinion that it is more useful for the student of psychology to read the great writers than the Psychoanalytic Quarterly” (Listening with the Third Ear: The Inner Experience of a Psychoanalyst, p 99). Well- In November, the Saskatchewan known writer and Saskatchewan Book Awards Gala celebrates A couple of days before the resident Yann Martel, someone Saskatchewan’s literary commuconference, I had been watching television images of the rescue OLIDAY PEN OUSE of 33 Chilean miners. Sure, the rescue was a well-orchestrated EGINA AND ASKATOON media event, but I think that meant nothing to the buried min"Love and joy come to you, And to you your wassail too...” ers and the six members of the rescue team. They were focussed The holiday season is upon us and we invite all our Guild on staying alive, taking care of the members and guests to join us on Thursday, December 9 business at hand and taking care at the Regina and Saskatoon Guild offices for some wasof each other. Such a situation sailing fun. Drop by either office between 5:00 and 7:00 can bring out the worst and the p.m. to lift a cup of cheer with the Guild staff and your best in people. If you watched fellow writers. the event you will have noticed how individual traits and temperaWe will have a live SKYPE link so we can all send greetings ments were revealed, strengths from south to north to south again. which helped the miners to survive—all fairly well intact. At the conference, founding members Jean Freeman, Ken Mitchell, and long-time member Geoffrey Ursell delighted us with reminiscences of planning meetings they held 41 years ago, which started this whole wonderful thing. In recognition of their many years of service and support of the SWG, Lifetime Memberships were awarded to Jean Freeman, Ken Mitchell, Kay Parley, Jean MacKenzie and Glen Sorestad. Forty-one years of teamwork have brought us to where we are today.


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nity and acknowledges award winners. Saskatchewan literature encourages an understanding of our place in the history of the province, the country and the world. The awards program instils a sense of community among Saskatchewan’s authors, publishers and the reading public. Congratulations to all who work together to make this event a great success each year. On a personal note, teamwork was apparent in the autumn of the year I was born. The weather was similar to this year and the harvest was late. My mother tells me that Dad and an eight-man threshing crew— definitely a team effort—were busy in the field when she went into labour. Dad wiped the wheat chaff and dust from his pants, jumped into the car and drove her to the hospital in Indian Head. Once the hospital staff took over, Dad went back to the harvest and waited for Mom’s phone call a few hours later. In those days dads weren’t part of the birthing team. My family team eventually grew to include nine younger siblings, all of us well educated and successful. I’m thankful my parents

believed in education, even for the girls. I have four children and two grandsons, all avid readers. Liam, age 16 in Grade 11, was invited this week to attend a district-wide student leadership meeting in Vancouver about the use of technology in schools today. Liam is a bright star in his multi-media class; his father, my son-in-law, is a multiple winner of New Media Awards. Declan, age 13 in Grade 8 at the same North Vancouver high school, reads university level books; he intelligently discusses concepts in books by Malcolm Gladwell. His mother, my daughter, is a history major and Executive Director of a large Canadian National Historic Site in Vancouver. You should see the division of labour in their household— teamwork in action.

Congratulations to Bob Calder and Gerry Hill, recipients of the 2010 Hyland Award, which recognizes SWG members for their exemplary and extensive volunteer support of the Saskatchewan literary community. Thank you Gerry and Bob, your contributions are indeed extensive. Thank you to Jerry Haigh for your masterful leadership of the Guild board these past two years. I look forward to your continued contribution as past president. I wish a fond farewell to Gloria Boerma and Sharon Adam with much appreciation for your excellent service to the board. I extend a heartfelt welcome back to Danica Lorer, Lisa Wilson, Scott Miller, Kelly-Anne Riess and Martine Noël-Maw, and an equally warm welcome to new board members Rod MacIntyre, George Khng and Marilyn Poitras. We are a diverse and talented team and I look forward to working with you in the coming months.

Work is best done when everyone pitches in. Please consider becoming an active member of the SWG; subscribe to Grain magazine, our literary journal, volunteer for a committee, tell others about our programs and services, go to our website or Happy holidays and all the best drop in at the office and check for 2011. into possibilities about where your talents might be needed. Cathy Fenwick

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR'S REPORT Wasn’t it a great party? The SWG fall conference and AGM celebrating our 40th anniversary was jam-packed with sessions, awards and celebratory activities. Highlights of the event are featured throughout this issue of Freelance, along with some great photos taken by Pam Bustin, Danica Lorer and Beth McLean. Thanks to everyone who participated, especially our wonderful presenters, panellists, entertainers and, of course, our volunteers and all of you who attended. Thanks also to Elder Michael Maurice for helping us to honour the Year of the Métis and our Aboriginal members with a traditional opening and closing prayer, which is an integral 4

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part of Aboriginal culture. A similar theme was also evident at the SaskCulture Gathering and AGM in Saskatoon held on October 29 and 30. “In recognition of the contributions of the Métis and the many other peoples and cultures who built communities in Saskatchewan, the 2010 Gathering is called 'Lii-Michifnaakishkatowuk'—a term for a traditional gathering,” explained the advertisement on the SaskCulture website. “This year also marks the 125th anniversary of the North West Resistance of 1885, one of the most significant events in Canadian history and a defining moment for the Métis.”

November/December 2010

The sub-title for the SaskCulture gathering, Taking Action for a More Inclusive Society, offered a plethora of information about inclusion for ALL our constituents, directives for building more inclusive organizations, and learning more about diversity and how Saskatchewan’s changing population will affect our organizations. Inclusion of diversity noted included linguistic, cultural, racial, disabilities, age, demographic and also social classes among other considerations. For instance, one speaker said that by 2017 Saskatchewan population will consist of 31% Aboriginal people; right now in Saskatoon the 45% rise in population is due to new immigrants,

and by 2014 we will have a labour shortage of 13,00015,000 people. Certainly there are a number of important issues to consider as the Guild grows in providing services to ALL writers in the province. Communication, collaboration, and commitment towards inclusivity are great places to start. In other news, I and other cultural groups met in Regina with Pablo Rodriquez, Liberal MP and the Official Opposition’s Critic for Canadian Heritage. Hosted by the Saskatchewan Arts Alliance, this session gave us an opportunity to discuss our views regarding Bill C-32, the Copyright Modernization Act. We had an informative talk including on how the Educational uses portion will negatively affect writers. It will remain to be seen what can be done to ensure proper benefits for writers and whether or not the campaign to fight the extension of “fair dealing” to education, will prove successful. By the time you read this report you will know that the second reading of the bill was successfully passed on November 2nd and it has been referred to a Committee, which will look at the bill clause-by-clause probably beginning mid-month. NOW is the time to share your views. This may be your last time to speak up about this Bill that could take away significant resources from our livelihoods. The Canadian Conference of the Arts (CCA) has prepared a Bill C-32 backgrounder in order to help its members and the general public understands the different positions of the various groups who have concerns regarding this Bill. For more information regarding Bill C-32 and CCA’s position to the upcoming debate, please visit: advocacy/bulletins/. The Writers Union of Canada has also sent information to its members with postcards requesting that you send them to the Prime Minister, the Minister of Indus-

try, the Minister of Canadian hosted at Government House Heritage and your MP. No post- by His Honour the Honourable Dr. Gordon L. Barnhart. From age is required. Saskatoon, Don has eight books We urge you to be speak up. If of poetry, and a range of others, you’d like to find the name and including biography, history and contact information for your fiction for adults and young MP, enter your postal code on adults. He’s also written extenthis website. sively for literary journals and Parlinfo/Compilations/House- is known as a playwright with OfCommons/MemberByPostal- work produced at 25th Street Theatre, the Saskatoon Fringe, Code.aspx?Menu=HOC. University of Saskatchewan On the promotional front, the Drama Department and the Guild has partnered with AC- Persephone Theatre. CESS7, a Saskatchewan community television broadcaster In academic circles, he’s known serving more than 200 com- as a distinguished teacher at munities across various ar- the University of Saskatchewan eas in the province. Through where he’s focused on modem their community programming, drama and film studies. His adwe are launching a children’s ditional accolades will become picture book show featuring apparent through news releases Saskatchewan authors, called and subsequent SWG coverage, Bookworm’s Corner, which is as he assumes his role as Poet geared towards families and Kin- Laureate. dergarten to Grade 2 students. This show will promote literacy, The Christmas holiday season Saskatchewan authors, books, is once again slipping into our publishers, libraries and the lives, and we invite all our Guild Guild and is being hosted by members and guests to join us Jean Freeman. What’s even bet- on Thursday, December 9 at the ter is that there are possibilities Regina Guild office for some for expanding the horizons and wassailing and lively interaction. developing additional shows in Guild members are also welseveral ways to include various come at the popular 7th floor other authors, genres and target party at the Bessborough Hotel audiences. The launch of Book- in Saskatoon in December, with worm’s Corner will be the week Grain, Sage Hill, Saskatchewan of December 27-31 at 11:00 Playwrights Centre, and Backa.m. daily, followed by several Flash magazine. Stay tuned for showings each week thereafter. the date. We’ll keep you posted on further May you all have a safe, fun, and developments. inspiring festive season and a Congratulations to Don Kerr, prosperous New Year filled with Saskatchewan’s new Poet Lau- writing successes! reate! He’ll be assuming his duties as of January 1, 2011, Best regards, with his first engagement being a reception on January 10 Judith Silverthorne

Welcome New Members Christine Berriman, Regina Jacqueline Ferraton, Wynyard Deborah Lee, Saskatoon Murray Logan, Regina Elder Michel Maurice, Saskatoon Phyllis Nakonechny, Swift Current Margy Reid, Milden Jarrett Rusnak, Regina Kim Ryan, Tantallon November/December 2010

SWG Freelance


NEWS Saskatchewan Winners of 2010 Governor General’s Literary Awards Congratulations to Regina author Dianne Warren who has won the Governor General’s Literary Award for fiction for her first novel, Cool Water. The novel was also longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize. And to Allan Casey of Saskatoon was awarded the non-fiction award for Lakeland: Journeys into the Soul of Canada. Congratulations also to Coteau Books for Wendy Phillips’ Fishtailing which won the Children’s Literature Award. For more information, please visit: or http://www.leaderpost. com/news/Warren+Casey+among+winners/3839674/story.html or article1801542/.

Arthur Slade receives TD Children’s Literature Award Saskatoon author Arthur Slade was awarded the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award for this book, The Hunchback Assignments. Slade received $25,000 for the prize. For more information, please visit:

PEN Canada "PEN Canada works on behalf of writers, at home and abroad, who have been forced into silence for writing the truth as they see it. PEN Canada is for debate and against silence. We lobby governments in Canada and internationally; organize petitions; send letters, faxes and postcards for the release of persecuted writers; and conduct public awareness campaigns about freedom of expression. We work for the release of imprisoned writers internationally, against censorship nationally and for networking and professional opportunities for writers living in exile in Canada." For those of our members who wants to know more about PEN, please go to their website at:

SWG Board and Estevan Writers’ Group Hold Joint Reading About 35 people attended a public reading by the SWG board and the local writers’ group on September 18 at Allie's Dining in Estevan. Among the featured readers were two Estevan area authors who, between them, have had four books published recently. Marie Donais Calder featured excerpts from The Other Side of War, part of her series of fictionalized accounts of her father’s life as a soldier in post-WWII Germany. Maureen Ulrich served the audience from her young adult novel Face Off, the second in a series portraying the lives of members of the Estevan Xtreme, a girls’ hockey team. Each year the SWG Board holds one of its regular meetings at various communities outside of Regina and Saskatoon in order to meet local writers. This was the board’s first visit to the Energy City.


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Marie Donais Calder

Under the Influence “It was a small but appreciative crowd.” A select group of fabulously attired SWG members mingled with the board and staff and even a few strangers at the "Under the Influence" wine-tasting fundraiser on Thursday October 14th. Though the crowd was small, they were generous—digging deep to buy raffle tickets, partake in the 50/50 draw and bid on items donated by local merchants and members. Hazel Kellner looks on in amazement as Rod MacIntyre purchases an arms-length of 50/50 tickets at the SWG winetasting fundraiser.

Thanks tp those who attended and especially the following businesses and members for their generous and ongoing support of the Guild and all we do.

The Better Good, Annette Bower, The Broadway Theatre, Coteau Books, Dance Saskatchewan, Hose and Hydrant, La Troupe du Jour, Mackenzie Art Gallery, Mendel Art Gallery, Suzanne Paschall and Jump Me Martha, Persephone Theatre, Saskatoon Minis (SK Express), Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan, Anne Pennylegion, Thistledown Press, Traditions Fine Gallery, Turning the Tide (video rentals and alternative bookstore), and Cherie Westmoreland

Speed Dating with OSAC On October 23, SWG staff went to North Battleford to promote Guild programs and members at the OSAC (Organization of Saskatchewan Arts Councils) Showcase Conference. They participated in the “table sessions” which felt a bit like speed dating with representatives of over 20 different towns and Art Councils. There were four 20-minute sessions and the Guild table was full for each round. The SWG dynamic duo distributed information and talked up the Readings program, the Mentorship program, Manuscript Evaluation, Professional Development workshops, the Poet Laureate and rural programming. They answered questions about writers and writing in Saskatchewan and even fielded a few queries about the Saskatchewan Book Awards, Sage Hill, The Saskatoon Writers’ Coop and the Saskatchewan Playwrights Centre. It was a good beginning, and we hope to stay in touch with various members of the Arts Councils that were met and to see what we can do to get some of our members (and pro-

grams) into the towns—large and small—that make up this great province.

More Great Honours for Grain! Grain has a solid tradition of being recognized for the outstanding content found within, and on, its covers. Since 1989, Grain has chalked up a total of eighteen nominations from the National Magazine Awards and sixteen nominations from the Western Magazine Awards, including six nominations for Magazine of the Year–Saskatchewan. Twenty-four stories have been included in the Journey Prize Anthology, five of which were selected as finalists, and one of those finalists took the prestigious prize in 2004. Writers have won prizes from the Alberta Literary Awards and the Dave Gerber Freelance Writers Award for work first featured in Grain. This past year we’ve kept that tradition alive. Among the highlights of the many accolades we've received this past year, Grain was, once again, a finalist for Magazine of the Year (SK) in this year's Western Magazine Awards; Krista Foss was selected as one of three finalists for the $10,000 Writers’ Trust of Canada/McClelland & Stewart Journey Prize for her fiction piece “The Longitude of OK” in Melt, Grain’s Spring 2009 issue; a story from Trophy, Grain’s Winter 2010 issue has been selected for Best Canadian Fiction 2011; we received two Honourable Mentions for Poetry

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from the National Magazine Awards for work by Don Domanski and Warren Heiti found in Conversation, Grain’s Fall 2009 issue—our first NMA recognition since 2004; we've had poems by three writers selected for Best Canadian Poetry 2010; Conversation, our Fall 2009 issue, was featured at last year's Vancouver International Writers' Festival, and this same issue was carried this summer by Naropa University's prestigious Summer Writing Program. While the glitz and glamour of award nominations and prizes makes us feel all tingly inside, it is perhaps the more critical and poignant feedback from our funders that sets the benchmark for analyzing the response to our publication. Our recent Canada Council report was glowing with praise. They liked the deft balance of regional, national and international themes and voices, and the jury singled out Grain for its dramatically improved design. They appreciated our strong sense of connection to our contributing writers, and saw our initiative to attend Magazine Canada’s Circulation School in order to bolster subscriptions as prudent and timely. The result was a modest and unexpected increase to our annual funding from the Council. As we approach the end of 2010, award season is right around the corner; more writing to select for entry, more copies to send to juries. While we hope for the glitz and glamour, the thrill of victory—in the end, that’s not the real prize. Having too much excellent writing to send to a jury ... now that's a goal all juries can get behind.

The Word On The Street Festival Preview by Charles Hamilton Two hundred fifty people gathered at the Farmer’s Market on a beautiful fall afternoon in Saskatoon for a preview event of Word On The Street, a national celebration of literacy and the written word. “We thought it was very successful. We didn’t know how many people were going to show up, but we were very glad at the turnout we had,” said Colleen McKay, The Word On The Street Festival Coordinator. The event was a celebration of Saskatchewan literary talent—showcasing everything from poetry to hip-hop to novel and play writing. The lineup included such literary heavyweights as Guy Vanderhaeghe, Louise Halfe, Jennifer Webber, Deborah Ellis, and Arthur Slade. The audience was also impressed by some of the younger talent, including local hip-hop artist Eekwol and spoken word artist Charles Hamilton. Although next year’s full blown The Word On The Street Festival will likely showcase some out-of-province talent, the spotlight will remain on Saskatchewan. “We are going to focus on featuring a lot of Saskatchewan poets, authors and singers and various forms of the written word,” said McKay. This was the pre-curser to what organizers are promising will be the must-see literary event of 2011. The Word On The Street is a national book and magazine festival that takes place the last Sunday of every September in cities all across Canada. More than 250,000 Canadians attended The Word On The Street book and magazine festivals in Vancouver, Toronto, Kitchener and Halifax on September 26, 2010. More than 450 authors, illustrators, performers participatated in 400 programmed events along with 500 exhibits from publishers from across Canada.


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“Each festival has a flavour and program reflecting the unique character of that city. Yet we share many things in common including a passion for the written word and a commitment to literacy," says Alex Moorshead, Executive Director of The Word On The Street Canada. And even though Saskatoon’s inaugural The Word on the Street was just a snapshot of what will come, organizers believe that based on what they saw this year, Saskatoon could become a huge part of The Word On The Street festivals across Canada. "We would like to build on the success we had this year,” said McKay. “The model is advocating reading and promoting literacy and that’s what we are going to do.” Part of that plan involves showcasing more Aboriginal talent and growing the audience both in numbers and in terms of engagement. With the incorporation of a larger “marketplace” next year, organizers hope to expand the reach of both large Canadian publishers and independent or self-published authors. They also hope to expand on the workshop activities that promote literacy and reading among children and adults. This year the official bookseller was the University of Saskatchewan. The Saskatchewan Publishers Group also had books for sale at the event. Other sponsors included RBC Dominion Securities and the Saskatoon Public Library. This event was a program of the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild. The Word on the Street is now its own entity.

NEW SASKATCHEWAN POET LAUREATE ANNOUNCED Don Kerr of Saskatoon is the new Poet Laureate of Saskatchewan. Kerr's term will begin January 1, 2011 and will run until December 31, 2012. The official inauguration will take place on January 10, 2011 at Government House at 7:00 p.m. Don Kerr is a poet, dramatist, fiction and non-fiction writer living in Saskatoon. Kerr has published nine books of poetry, with the most recent, The Dust of Just Beginning, being shortlisted for the 2010 Saskatchewan Book Awards. His plays have been produced at the 25th Street Theatre and at the Greystone. He has had extensive editorial experience on Grain and on the boards of Coteau Books and NeWest Press, as press editor for books of poetry and politics, and has been a mentor to emerging writers. The selection committee is enthusiastic in their recommendation of Kerr. They note not only the skill of his poetry, but also his work in the literary community: “He is devoted to the province of Saskatchewan and celebrates the place and the people through many of his writings. Kerr has received the Saskatchewan Order of Merit and has dedicated himself to the history of his city and his province.” Kerr is the fourth person to hold the title of Poet Laureate; his three predecessors were Glen Sorestad (2000—2004), Louise B. Halfe (2005—2006), and Robert Currie (2007-2010). Begun in 2000, the Saskatchewan Poet Laureate Program was the first provincial program of its kind in Canada. The Poet Laureate Program is funded by the Saskatchewan Arts Board and is under the patronage of the Lieutenant Governor, His Honour the Honourable Dr. Gordon L. Barnhart. The Saskatchewan Writers' Guild administers the program and the Saskatchewan Arts Board and the Saskatchewan Book Awards act in an advisory capacity. For more information contact Tracy Hamon: 306-791-7743 or

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Saskatoon Shenanigans by Pam Bustin Busy bees, busy bees… The SWG, along with the whole Dance Saskatchewan building, celebrated Culture Days with a day packed full of fun on September 24. We offered readings, dance workshops and had SCYAP (Saskatoon Community Youth Arts Programming) create a mural in one of our studios. The Guild’s contribution to the day was Hit the WALL! 40 words for 40 years where several members rose to the challenge to write, using only 40 words, an occasional poem/prose piece in honour of the SWG and what it means to them, to be displayed on the wall at Dance Saskatchewan. Thanks and kudos to: Merrill Edlund, Jean Fahlman, Wes Funk, Gerry Hill, Andréa Ledding, Yann Martel, Vincent Murphy, Marion Mutala, Mansel Robinson and … me … Pam Bustin. We had 14 people attend our first ever lunchtime reading at Café Sola featuring Brenda Baker and Dave Margoshes. I wish we would’ve had a bigger audience—they both gave excellent readings that touched us all with inspiration, humour and wee bits of heartache. I thank them, again, for their words and their continuing work on behalf of writers and artists in the province.

Writers for Peace: L-R front row: Robert Kavanagh, Mike Flensburg, Bill Robertson, Pam Bustin, Charles Hamilton, Nicole Almond. Back row: Carol Kavanagh, Jo Oliver, Alison Flensburg, Alice Kiupers, Khodi Dill, Elise Marcella, and Kevin Norlin

community, and then open up the floor to all comers old and new for the open mic. I think it was a good balance. I liked the upstairs room at Sola and may use it again for future events. The reading in the main space … well … let me just thank and congratulate the participants and the audience again for coming out and really giving the “old school” coffee house reading idea a good try. After the open mic, we all wandered back where the tenants of our building (SWG, Dance Saskatchewan, Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan, Saskatchewan Express and Saskatchewan Society for Education Through Art) held a mixer for writers, dancers, actors and all manner of cultural folk. The new studio mural painted by SCYAP was unveiled and the Saskatoon Minis performed a few numbers for us. We had over 100 people drop by for a drink and to take a look at the Hit the WALL! exhibit and the new mural. It was a good day.

Gary Chappell, Bernice Friesen, George Khng, Marion Mutala and Christina Shaw read at our Culture Days Open Mic later in the afternoon. Many thanks to these brave souls who read On Sunday, September 26, and to the other SWG members I spent a glorious afternoon who came out to support them. volunteering at The Word On The Street Festival preview. It As I said on the day, I was re- was my first time hearing Eekally excited to be able to hear wol and she blew me away! If new work and pay a bit of you ever, ever have the chance homage to Brenda and Dave as to check her out, do it! And senior members of the writing … true confession time … it 10

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was also my first time hearing Guy Vanderhaeghe read. I know … that’s a bit embarrassing isn’t it? I am so glad I was there to hear the teasing, tempting beginning of his new novel. Rounding out my day of listening joy were Deborah Ellis, Louise Halfe, Charles Hamilton, Arthur Slade and Jennifer Wynne Webber. The book tables looked like they were doing a brisk business and everyone was smiling. Mark your calendars for The Word On The Street Festival next year on September 25 in Saskatoon! On another volunteer front … I read at the Writers for Peace event at the Frances Morrison Library on September 21. And there, again,I got to hear a few “entirely new to me” writers whose work I thoroughly enjoyed. Is there something in the water around here that Saskatoon is churning out all these fascinating writers? Sure is fun to be around, I’ll tell you that much. In October we had the reading/ celebration for our fall session of Weaving Words at The Global Gathering Place. Though we had 17 registrants in the program only four brave souls made it on the evening of the reading. I send a huge thank

you to Jennifer Wynne Webber, our amazing instructor, for the program and to Afton Tolley from The Global Gathering Place who helped us pull it all together. Special kudos go out to Maria-Teresa Colombani, Tahereh Rahafrouz, Soledad Morgado, and Albert Shi who shared their work with us at the reading. And then there was the Fall Conference. It was great to see so many of you there to take in the sessions and celebrate our 40th anniversary with us. I hope you all had a blast—I know I did. Til next time, go easy. Pam

L-R: Maria-Teresa Colombani, Afton Tolley, Tahereh Rahafrouz, Jennifer Wynne Webber, Soledad Mogado, and Albert Shi




We are pleased to present the inaugural event Writing North, which will focus on “the North." The panels and sessions will talk about definitions and writing about north of anywhere. There will be a panel discussion on Friday and individual sessions on Saturday.

Friday, January 21 (3:00–5:00 p.m.) and Saturday, January 22 (9:00 a.m.–4:30 p.m.) University of Saskatchewan, Arts Tower, Room 241

Featured authors are Patrick Lane, Louise Halfe and Kenneth Brown Since he started writing in 1961, Patrick Lane has authored more than twenty books of poetry, for which he has received most of Canada's top literary awards including the Governor General's Award, the Canadian Authors Association Award, and two National Magazine Awards. Today, his poetry appears in all major Canadian anthologies of English literature. He has also been recognized for his gardening skills, and the half-acre he tends has been featured in the Recreating Eden television film series. Louise Bernice Halfe, also known as Skydancer, was born in Two Hill, Alberta. Bear Bones & Feathers was published by Coteau Books in 1994. It received the Canadian People's Poet Award, and was a finalist for the Spirit of Saskatchewan Award in that year. Blue Marrow was originally published by McClelland & Stewart in 1998. It was a finalist for both the Governor General’s Award for Poetry and the Pat Lowther Award, and for the 1998 Saskatchewan Book of the Year Award and the Saskatchewan Poetry Award. Her most recent work is The Crooked Good. Kenneth Brown has been working in the professional theatre since 1971 as an actor, playwright, director, and producer. He burst onto the Canadian playwriting scene in 1985 with Life After Hockey and has gone on to pen thirty-three produced plays and radio plays for the CBC national network and West German Radio. His plays have been produced in seven countries in three languages. In 1998, he began his association with Ribbit Productions. Most recently Ken has just finished his trilogy Spiral Dive, an epic play about a Canadian Spitfire pilot facing mortal, and moral struggles as WWII winds down. Having been a hit on the Fringe circuit, the play begins a series of tours this January of 2011. Ken has taught acting in the Theatre Arts department at Grant MacEwan University since 1983, and has also been on the faculty of the English department since 1999. For more information contact Tracy Hamon at (306)791-7743, or Pam Bustin at (306)955-5513, November/December 2010

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Profile: David Kyle, Executive Director, Saskatchewan Arts Board by Joyce Wells “My being with the Saskatchewan Arts Board now has a lot to do with this,” states Executive Director David Kyle as he drops the pamphlet Pride of Saskatchewan on the table. It is the newly minted Government of Saskatchewan policy publication from the Ministry of Tourism, Parks, Culture and Sport. David Kyle had been hired by the Ministry to draft a Culture Policy resulting from a province-wide survey and community dialogue that took him to communities throughout the province. The work was completed during the first half of 2009 and now in October 2010 the province has a comprehensive culture policy.

The search committee received interest from national as well as international candidates, but a key priority was to find someone with a grounded understanding of the importance of culture in the Saskatchewan experience. Kyle’s mother was chair of the board of the Mackenzie Art Gallery, his father chaired the Regina symphony—his childhood was an education-by-osmosis in the Arts. His most recent work gathering cultural needs data throughout the province broadened and deepened his personal interest and understanding. The search committee had found a natural fit. David Kyle had found a position where he knew he could actually effect change.

Kyle sits easily in the administrator’s chair. He knows the deep satisfaction of seeing supporting grants flow through the Arts Board to artists and arts organizations. He mentions the recent Saskatchewan Book Awards news conference announcing Kyle’s background is in broad- the 2010 shortlist. cast journalism. He was part of the first class to graduate “The caliber of this year’s from University of Regina nominees is really impresSchool of Journalism in 1982 sive,” he enthuses. “We are and went on to a career with particularly excited to have the CBC becoming Regional two of our own nominated— Director for Radio, TV and the Byrna Barclay from the board Internet for Saskatchewan. of directors and Dianne WarAfter 18 years he left the ren is on staff. Both nomiCBC to start a self-directed nated in the fiction category.” business as a consultant, Saskatchewan writers, he and shortly was to accept notes, are recognized nationthe culture policy work with ally and internationally. the Saskatchewan Government. Now steeped in the Kyle admits he is challenged cultural hopes, despairs and by the complexity of his job. dreams of organizations and The Arts Board played a individuals across this prov- key role in projects such as ince, Kyle’s next move was to showcasing Saskatchewan apply for the Saskatchewan artists at the 2010 Winter Arts Board position vacated Olympics, and the Lieutenby Jeremy Morgan’s retire- ant Governor’s Arts Awards ment on March 30, 2010. recognizing Poet Laureate


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November/December 2010

Robert Currie with the Lifetime Achievement Award. A big part of that complexity is administering grants. “Artists believe in peer juries,” Kyle explains. One of the satisfactions of his job is being able to attract artists of the highest caliber in all genres from across the nation to act on the peer juries that adjudicate grant applications. Arts Board juries approved close to 500 grants for a total value of almost $11 million.

“On the other hand,” Kyle says, ”the saddest part of my job is to sign the letter saying the jury found merit in your submission, but we have run out of money.” Money - there is never enough! When asked how Saskatchewan stacked up against the other provinces in the area of cultural support, Kyle replies that all jurisdictions have some form of support,”but with its 62 year history, since Ernie Lindner set up the Saskatchewan Arts Board (the first in North America), Saskatchewan stands first among equals.” He sees his responsibility as caretaker

in this office. He pays full 1. Foster artistic excellence respect to the far-reaching and promote creative exwork that has preceded him, pression. and sees his challenge now is to further the goals set out in 2. Promote shared stewardthe new culture policy. ship. More than once he mentions the real need for support for the cultural industries such as publishing, and how that support helps publish Saskatchewan authors. He delights in the “the magic that can happen” when school kids first hear live music from a musician who has formerly existed only in an iPod, or listen to an author read their own words from a favourite story book, or see an artist create a miracle in form and colour before their very eyes. He knows the truth of the term “Culture Builds Community” coined by former Arts Board chair Ken Sagal. And Kyle is quick to emphasize that culture is far more than just the Arts. Kyle could recite the five goals of the new culture policy backward in his sleep:

Métis, has seen the play featured throughout Saskatchewan, at the Batoche festival and in Manitoba. During the last week of November, The Trial of Louis Riel wasfeatured in four venues in the Nation’s 3. Build understanding of and capital. access to culture. Partnering is not only a key 4. Strengthen communitie concept for the Arts Board; and build strong organiza Kyle knows it is a very real tions. way of getting things done. He points to the expanding 5. Increase the economic partnership with the Saspotential of the culture katchewan Foundation for sector. the Arts. Funded by the Foundation and administered This past autumn season, the by the Arts Board, the EmergArts Board staff is intensely ing Artists Grant program occupied with the juries who provides financial assistance adjudicate the hundreds of to Saskatchewan’s emerging grant applications received artists in any art form. from arts organizations as well as individual artists. David Kyle knows the history At the same time the pilot of the Arts in Saskatchewan, project, Culture on the Go, the intent of the 1997 Arts is funding some twenty-five Board Act, and the necessity touring projects including of targeted planning if the Rielco’s live theatre produc- existing Arts network is to tion of The Trial of Louis Riel. be maintained, strengthened This 125th anniversary of the and continually refreshed 1885 Northwest Resistance, with youthful energy and the celebrated as The Year of the originality of new ideas.

SWG SEEKING MANUSCRIPT EVALUATORS The SWG is seeking established/professional writers from Saskatchewan who would like to be included on the manuscript evaluator roster for our revised Manuscript Evaluation Service. Writers (including those who have previously provided this service for the Guild) skilled in evaluating manuscripts and with extensive publications in any genre are asked to submit their written request to, along with a brief résumé outlining relevant experience by December 22, 2010 A selection committee made up of peers will affirm there is a strong qualified list of evaluators available to ensure professionalism, transparency, and equal opportunity for our members. This program is generously sponsored and subsidized by the Saskatchewan Arts Board. For more information about this service, please see the web site: Note: Due to the variable nature of applications for the Manuscript Evaluation Service, inclusion on the list does not necessarily ensure contract employment with the Guild. For more information contact: Tracy Hamon, Program Officer at programs@skwriter. com or phone (306)791-7743.

November/December 2010

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Q: What does an English grad say to a Creative Writing Professor?

The third irony is that one would expect Tories, torch bearers for free enterprise, to be protecting intellectual property (IP). Instead, at the behest of stalwart supporters—I refer to the teachers’ unions, university students, university faculties, and Departby James Romanow ments of Education, true blue Tories everyone—they built a giOf all the strange scenes of poant size loophole into the bill, allitical theatre this country has lowing educational use to be free. seen, probably the strangest is being acted out as you read this. Strange bedfellows aside, who Unfortunately the farce will have wouldn’t like that? Education a huge, maybe monstrous, impact is a public good, right? Except on Canadian creators. education is undefined in the act. The Tories have introduced yet another copyright update. Earlier attempts by both Liberals and Tories all died with election calls. The act needs updating. Since the last revision some 15 years ago, technologies of distribution, publishing, and reading have been completely re-invented. The rise of digital copies has allowed millions of Canadians to cheerfully pirate as much material as they could grab. As a result the recording and book publishing industries are in what appears to be terminal decline. The theory back when was that information yearned to be free, and by distributing free copies, you would get back vast quantities of money from the new consumers you created. Everyone pointed to the porn industry as a shining example. This is the first irony of the current bill. I don’t know about you, but I find it a little peculiar to see my government looking to pornography as a business model. The second irony is built into the first. This April, the porn industry produced a public service ad pleading with people to stop downloading free pirate copies from file sharing sites. Income from the industry is shrinking so fast you’d think somebody stole their Viagra. (Assuming porn stars fall back on the same income source as musicians—touring— you can expect to see a great deal more of porn stars coming soon at a location near you.) 14

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Of the $40 billion budget for universities across Canada, roughly $40 million, a tenth of one per cent of the budget, will be paid in copying royalties. Access Copyright will distribute this money to over 8000 creators and six hundred publishers. Believe me, the few hundreds my friend collects are important at her income level.

Perhaps the crowning irony of all is that those same denizens of the universities have been busily expanding their publishing and creative writing programs. They are simultaneWriters make money when pub- ously expanding the supply of lishers sell their books. Other writers while refusing to pay for people can’t legally reproduce our product. those books without paying a royalty. The Government of As writers we have become Canada is proposing to exempt accustomed to our lot, an aseducational users from having sumption of poverty, and part or full time jobs to support to pay. our habit. While our provincial If this bill passes, I can legally government has made some borrow a book from the library, strides to help—the Writers-inscan it, and read it at my leisure the-Schools program being a on my cell phone. As far as I’m wonderful example—they are concerned, all reading is done for now part of a lawsuit to never education, and this will include have to pay copyright royalties everything copied by corpora- ever again. tions as well as private users. Do we really want our kids The fourth irony is the constitu- taught from "universal" texts ency that is so vocal for this off of the internet? Do we really free lunch—students, faculties, prefer that our kids can spell etc.—all expect to make their Mississippi and not Saskatchliving as knowledge workers. The ewan? economics of this are delusional. We can no longer afford the luxA friend of mine, an award- ury of bitching in the privacy of winning author of a dozen titles, our kitchens. If we won’t speak some of which are used as post- out on behalf of our livelihood secondary texts, is now 66. Once there is no one else who will. upon a time, she could expect a steady stream of royalties from I urge you to visit http://www. her back list. Ten years ago a and use book brought her a $15 thousand the email template to send a letadvance, a national tour and book ter to your MP, the Prime Minister and the opposition. You can reviews across Canada. use the pre-written template if Her most recent book, published you’re short of time, or you can last year, brought nothing in add your own comments. advances. She qualifies for subsidized health care, and spends Or the only thing an English her time on the road promoting grad will have to say to a Creaher work. Welcome to retirement tive Writing Professor is “Would when all copying is free. Every- you like fries with that, sir?” one reading this will know of, or live, a similar story.

November/December 2010

Meet Your 2010/2011 SWG Board of Directors Cathy Fenwick has been a classroom teacher, therapist, manager of SIAST Career Services, and she currently works in private practice as a workplace consultant. She holds a Master's Degree in Clinical Psychology. Cathy has publications in several journals, magazines and newspapers, and has published two books. “I have served for four years on the SWG board, the last two as Vice-President. One of the best things about being on this board is that I get to work with like-minded people who are passionate about what they do, and I truly enjoy working with Guild staff.” Born in Indian Head and raised on a farm near Kendal, Cathy loves the prairies and makes her home in Regina. She is a member of ACTRA Saskatchewan and is an active participant in a Saturday morning Improv group. George Khng has been interested in writing since undergraduate days when he was the managing editor of his University newspaper. Trained as an engineer and presently a vice president of an engineering company in Saskatoon, he had the chance to travel widely from the Far East to the Americas. He is interested in peoples’ lives, the way they live and how they perceive the world. He is a student of political and historical events and is often surprised by the varied dominant narratives from different times and different parts of the world. Being the only Asian on the board, he hopes to bring fresh perspective that would further enrich the SWG’s fine tradition of being the outside voice to the people whose voices could cannot otherwise be heard. He just published his first novel, Mist Over The Rain Forest, hoping to do his small part for getting those voices heard. Apart from writing, George is a painter of geometric art. He is married with two children.

Danica Lorer refuses to get a haircut and a “day job” and as a result gets messed up in a lot of adventures including freelance writing and photography, children’s library programming, professional clowning and face art, storytelling, writing a weekly column and a heap of volunteer work. During her first two years on the board of the SWG she has tried to reach out to other rural writers and keep their unique needs as part of the discussions. She has enjoyed meetings with the board throughout the province and is inspired, encouraged and entertained by members of the SWG. She is a wife and a mother of two school-aged children and two grown stepchildren. Lorer lives in Maidstone where she parks her cars, plants her tomatoes and buys most of her groceries. Born and raised in Saskatoon, Scott Miller was a journalist for 20 years in Saskatchewan and British Columbia before returning to the University of Saskatchewan to obtain a degree in Native Studies. He has resided in Estevan for the last 15 years where he freelances for motorcycle journals and writes fiction. He has published short stories and a mystery novel Silence Invites the Dead. As a long-time member of the SWG, he has benefited from a number of its many services over the years. With this commitment to the board, he wishes to contribute in return. He hopes the board can benefit from a perspective outside of the two major centres. The Estevan area has a thriving writing community. Scott is married to Laurel, the town’s best librarian. His other passions are motorcycles and his home-made beer and wine. Circa 1983, Rod MacIntyre quit driving cab, bought a computer, joined the SWG and committed to fulltime writing. Although he once worked as an actor and director, he is now primarily a fiction writer and editor. He

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has served on the SWG board twice and presently makes his home in La Ronge with Sharyn and his two cats. He has ridden his motorcycle from sea to sea to sea to sea, and played golf and blues harp along the way. Originally from Québec, Martine Noël-Maw has made Saskatchewan her home since 1993. A French literature graduate, she worked in communications and human resources before acting on her passion and plunging headfirst into writing in 2001. She has since published seven books of fiction for youth and adults. Her novel Amélia et les papillons won many honours, including the Prix du Livre Français of the 2006 Saskatchewan Book Awards. She also teaches French as a second language at the Institut français of the University of Regina. Marilyn Poitras is a Half-Breed from southern Saskatchewan who has had a weakness for paper and writing tools since the days of extra large red pencils on the first day of Kindergarten. Marilyn and her husband Ted Whitecalf work with Saskatchewan First Nations to collect the stories of Elders and publish those stories to add the Indigenous voice to the history of our land. She organized a national Indigenous womens' writing workshop in 2004 sponsored by the Claire L’Heureux-Dube Social Justice Fund at the University of Ottawa. A collection of that work was published in 2009. Marilyn has also written a few articles,a book chapter, lots of reports and has begun writing children’s stories. She has four children, four step-children and grandchildren who are the best teachers in her life. She teaches at the Law School at the University of Saskatchewan. Kelly-Anne Riess is a freelance journalist, copywriter, filmmaker and poet based in Moose Jaw. She is the author of the poetry collection To End a Conversation and was the lead writer on the bestselling Saskatchewan Book of Eve-


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rything. She has travelled across North America working on documentaries that have aired worldwide on networks such as the A&E Biography Channel, History Television and CBC. Her work has also appeared in newspapers and magazines across Canada, including the Globe and Mail, the Ottawa Citizen and the Montreal Gazette, as well as Grain and The Windsor Review. She received the Blue Sky Award in Journalism and the C. Irwin McIntosh Journalism Prize from the University of Regina. She also received an honourable mention in the Saskatchewan Sterling Writing Awards. She was shortlisted for a Lieutenant Governor’s Arts Award, a YWCA Young Woman of Distinction Award, a Regina Mayor’s Art Award. Most recently, Kelly-Anne received the Outstanding Young Alumni Award from the University of Saskatchewan. Lisa Wilson lives in Saskatoon and works for the Gabriel Dumont Institute, where she has held a variety of positions for over 12 years, including Principal and her current position as Director. She feels fortunate to have the opportunity to work in a Métis environment on Métis issues every day. In 2005 and 2006, Lisa was a contributing writer to the provincial Adult Basic Education curricula, and has presented at provincial and national conferences on the topic of curriculum and Aboriginal learners. In addition to her “day job,” Lisa writes fiction and some creative non-fiction as well. Lisa has published stories in a number of literary magazines, including Grain and Prairie Fire, and her work is included in an anthology of Aboriginal love stories called Zaagidiwin is a Many Splendoured Thing. Lisa placed second in the 2009 John V. Hicks Long Manuscript Awards. She is currently looking for a publisher for her collection of short stories and is working on a young adult book that centres on Métis culture and the folklore of Rougarou. 2010-2011 is Lisa’s third term on the SWG board and she looks forward to heading up the policy committee this year. Lisa’s board-related experiences include working on issues of good governance in her job, and being a founding board member and past president of the Saskatchewan Aboriginal Literacy Network.

November/December 2010

Publishing Miracles Do Happen

was adamant that these stories needed to be told. However, Annick Press was not interested. I foraged on and submitted to every Canadian publisher listed by Marie Donais Calder in The Writer's Market who February 6, 2010 was my would accept historical fiction, youngest brother's 50th birth- including Borealis Press of Otday. I doubt very much that this tawa. day impacted him as much as it did me. I received a phone Undaunted by the reams of call that day. It changed my life. rejections filling my file folder I decided to submit once again in A series of events led to this in- 2006. After all, you can't catch credible miracle. First, my Mom a fish if you don't toss out your asked me in May, 1998, to find line, I reasoned. My rejection file "the family" for her. I knew gained weight. immediately that she meant the family in Germany whom Eventually I quit writing and Dad had befriended in 1945. gave up my role as co-chair of He served as a peacekeeper in the Estevan Writer's Group. I Leer, Germany for 13 months refocused my life and concenafter WWII. Mom was left in trated on the concept of retiring charge of their three little sons and dealing with my deteriorating vision. in Alida, Saskatchewan. Dad died in a car accident decades before her request to me and Mom needed to complete her life circle by finding the family. Second, in spite of the fact that we never did know the family's surname, I did find a clue on the back of one of the family pictures. A brother had written a message to Dad and signed his name. This name would equate to John Smith in Canada, but I did find the family. Arthur had just died but the letter I wrote was delivered to his sister. I was not able to travel to Germany because I was losing the sight in my left eye and couldn't fly. My youngest brother made the trip with Mom and they video-taped the visit for me. Third, in 2001 I had to give up my teaching career. And Estevan was awarded Allan Safarik as a writer-in-residence. Allan lit the fire under me to tell Dad's story. I wrote three novels in the series and began the fourth. I submitted the first novel to no avail. I received several rejection letters, some of which were most encouraging. Rick Wilks of Annick Press

company was moving when my manuscript was received and it had been deposited into a box but never moved to the new location. There were four submissions from me. Three were children's manuscripts and the fourth was the first two chapters of The Other Side of War. Frank asked me if I could send him the complete manuscript. Five ink cartridges later, the manuscript was on its way from Florida to Ottawa. Three weeks later I received another phone call from Frank. He loved the novel; his three readers now had it and he would call me next week. Sunday afternoon, eight days later, I received another call. “Can I send you a contract?” he asked.

Then I received the phone call! I boldly replied, “This is a series of at least eight books, you do This in itself was a miracle since understand?” I was in Florida and the majority of my call-forwarded calls “That's no problem. Let's do never reached me. The owner it.” of the publishing company identified himself and offered I gave it a quarter of a second an apology to me. He said he to sink in before I said, “Well if had just received a delivery of you really insist I suppose you 70 manuscripts in a box. His can send me a contract.”

PLAYWRIGHTS READINGS SERIES The Playwrights Reading Series 2010/2011, hosted by the Department of Theatre, University of Regina in partnership with the SWG presents Clem Martini, reading from his recent dramatic work.

January 17, 2011 at 8:00 p.m. Riddell Centre, University of Regina The reading is open to the public and free of charge. For more information please contact the Theatre Department at 585-5562.

November/December 2010

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"But,” asked Frank, “do you white haired men who haven’t think you can actually sell books been reading books are not in Saskatchewan?” able to put these novels down. The books are proving to be “Just watch me.” My hands inter-generational giving young shook so badly I could barely people something in common hang onto the phone. with their grandparents in this electronics dominated age. One The Other Side of War entered World War Two veteran has my world on July 13, 2010 instructed his family that once just four and a half months the books are read he is placafter that phone call. I released ing them in the case with his the book in the ghost town in war medals. And they are not south-west Manitoba where my to be separated after his death. parents are buried and where I People are sending me money in grew up. The date was July 17, the mail for books even before my Dad's birthday. My family I receive them. They are postgathered at their graveside with ing positive comments on my the book in hand. This is their facebook page, emailing me story. I'm simply the storyteller. and phoning me to encourage me to get the next novel out. The first five books in The They claim that waiting for the Other Side series are set in next book in the series is like Germany. The next four are set waiting for your favourite telin Saskatchewan and Mani- evision show to come back on toba. There have been some after a long summer hiatus. This delightful surprises for me as clamouring audience has put I’ve travelled to bookstores, the pressure on me to finish the care homes, schools and librar- series sooner rather than later. ies across our great province. I recently informed my publisher Young boys, young men and that I know the ending of the

eighth book and the beginning of the ninth. Initially I thought there were only going to be eight books in the series. His response didn't surprise me. “I'm behind you all the way. We're cooking now, Marie.” It's true—we are cooking. The first novel went to second printing within weeks of the initial 2000 copy run. The second book, The Other Side of Fear, was released mid-September with The Other Side of Pain on its heels in October. They will also be going to a second printing in the near future. The Other Side of Trauma and The Other Side of Torn will be released in 2011. The picture books I mentioned earlier that were in the abandoned box will receive our attention next year. Frank's words ring in my ears as I write this. Things are really cooking. February 6, 2010 changed my life. Miracles in publishing truly can—and do—happen.

Round Robins Celebrate in Silver By Sheena Koops Nestled in a double room at Saskatoon’s Park Town Hotel, ten of the twelve Saskatchewan Children’s Writers’ Round Robin “chicks” warm one-page submissions, and just before heading downstairs for the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild’s 40th Anniversary party, a few manuscript-size ideas hatch into autumn’s silver sunshine. This is what the Robins have been doing for 25 plus years: writing, gathering, synergizing, and flying high. Alison Lohans, one of the founding members, writes about meeting Gillian Richardson (Jill) in a Janet Lunn workshop in 1982. She says, “We started sharing our work and critiquing. By 1984 we got to thinking there must be others like us


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R-L: Back row: Sharon Plumb Hamilton, Alison Lohans, Sandra Lynn Davis, Sheena Koops. Middle row: Jo Bannatyne-Cugnet, Dianne Young, Anne Patton, Paula Jane Remlinger, Judith Benson (former Robin). Front row: Linda Aksomitis, Gillian (Jill) Richardson, Adele Dueck, Myrna Guymer

scattered around the province. I put a blurb in Freelance and we had four or five responses, all by mail, pretty quickly. Pat

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(Patricia) Armstrong suggested using a round robin format, with our package of letters circulating for five years before we ever met

in person. By then we’d added writing life. Instead of writing Although the Round Robins is a several new members.” in isolation, I have a commu- “closed” writing group (with a nity who cares about what maximum of 12 writers, an apGillian adds, “The initial con- I write and that I do it well. plication process, and a waiting tact with Alison, and then the Instead of feeling like I’m the list) members, like Paula Jane formation of the group, encour- only one around who writes, I Remlinger, Sandra Lynn Davis, aged me to pursue writing, to have close friends who share and Adele Dueck have been keep learning the craft. ... Re- my passion.” This community seen at CANSCAIP and SWG ally, their motivation and sup- of writers has also been known conferences offering support port is the reason I am a writer to enjoy a little down time; just and advice to emerging and now. They helped me to see ask yodeling sensation, Dianne established children’s author’s what was possible. One of the Young, whose picture book Fly- who are organizing groups of key aspects of such a group is ary is cracking open, even as their own. Alison says, “One the focus on personal goals. It we speak. thing that could be pointed out has been a joy to watch everyis how we’ve grown over the one grow and succeed.” The Robins have been a force years and within our closelyof nature, helping to create the knit context, continue to deAnd succeed they have, with Prairie Horizons CANSCAIP velop and grow situations that sixty books listed on their web- (Canadian Society of Child- work for us. Others can start site,, and rens Authors, Illustrators and long-distance groups as well more on the way. The publishing Performers) conference. Gillian and, with commitment, make achievement goes hand in hand says, “One of the early gather- it work.” with top-level writing, illustrat- ings brought together children’s ed by many awards including writers from Saskatchewan and As the snow flies this winter, the prestigious 2008 Science Alberta at Jackfish Lodge in some Robins are wintering in Society Journalism Award 1995, and the idea of a bien- on the prairie while others fly for Myrna Guymer’s Canadian nial conference was born. It has north, west, and south. DeShield Alphabet and the 2008 since been held regularly at St. spite the distances, this group Saskatchewan Book Award in Michael’s Retreat in Lumsden, is well on its way to new milethe Young Adult Category for attracting devotees of children’s stones and celebrations; as Alison Lohan’s This Land We writing primarily from western they say, “birds of a feather, Call Home. Canada but also from across stick together.” Gillian sums it the country.” Currently Jo Ban- up nicely: “Another highlight, Anne Patton, recent winner of natyne-Cugnet, Robin of Prairie for me, is simply the fact that the Moonbeam Spirit Award Alphabet fame, is chairing the this group has stayed together with her picture book, Danc- 2011 conference committee. for so many years, evolving as ing in my Bones, says, “Since I our writing careers have done.” joined the Robins five years ago, The Robins were also instru- As a young Robin myself, I say I haven’t missed a meeting yet. mental in starting the CAN- the sky is the limit, and here’s As an emerging writer, I have SCAIP Chapter, CANSCAIP SK to the next twenty-five years received encouragement, hon- Horizons with Linda Aksomitis, as we collectively fly for gold. est feedback and insider tips longtime Robin and prolific on how the writing business writer, acting as president. works. Our discussions have ranged from the philosophical to ENTORS AND PPRENTICES the minutest details of editing. I feel nurtured by the companionship of these inspiring women.” The Robins' success is not by We are pleased to announce the mentors and apprentice accident; their purpose is to pairings for 2011as follows: raise awareness of the genre of children’s literature in the Apprentice Mentor province, to create opportunities Caitlin Ward (fiction) Dave Margoshes for professional development, dee Hobsbawn-Smith (poetry) Elizabeth Philips to share writing, marketing, Jess Boyachek (fiction) Ted Dyck and promotional information, Gary Chappell (poetry) Don Kerr and to celebrate each other’s Moira McKinnon (fiction) Harriet Richards successes.

2011 M

Sharon Plumb Hamilton, Webmaster for the Robins, whose first novel was hatched just this year, says, “Being in the Robins has revolutionized my


Stay tuned for information about the apprentice readings on April 28, 2011.

November/December 2010

SWG Freelance


The Space-Time Continuum

Science fiction, though narrow- it means to be human in ways er in scope (since it attempts that we simply can't in real life, to at least pretend to conform because it would be unethical to the laws of science) seems or impractical to conduct the to also be much harder to de- experiments. by Edward Willett fine, unless you’re happy with When I was a high school de- Margaret Atwood’s infamous “Using literary devices such as bater, in the dim, distant past, I decree that science fiction is displacement in time or space, or metaphorical others who always began debates by defin- “squids in outer space.” let us exaggerate or isolate ing my terms. Solipsistic definitions abound, parts of the human psyche, So let me begin this new regular such as Damon Knight’s, that science fiction allows us to column in Freelance the same science fiction is what we see ourselves from odd angles, way: by defining what I’m going point to when we say “science catching glimpses of truths that fiction,” or Norman Spinrad’s might otherwise be hidden from to be talking about. “science fiction is what science view.” I’m going to be focusing in this fiction editors buy.” So, when I write a novel (Marsecolumn on what is referred to in polite literary society as “specu- Here’s one I like, from Canada’s guro) about genetically modified best-known and most success- humans being persecuted by lative fiction.” ful science fiction writer, Robert religious extremists in the far That’s not a term I often use J. Sawyer: “Science fiction is a future, I am in some small way myself, since it is sometimes laboratory for thought experi- wrestling with issues that are a euphemism used by writers ments about the human condi- arising now and will continue horrified by the thought of get- tion; it lets us examine what to arise into the future. I could ting icky “genre” germs all over their nice clean “literary” story, but it has its place as a useful umbrella, beneath which shelter ANUSCRIPT VALUATION ERVICE three more specific genres, fantasy, science fiction and horror.


Of the three, the easiest to define, it seems to me, is horror. Indeed, it defines itself: it’s fiction designed to invoke the emotional response that gives it its name. Some horror is completely, if disquietingly, realistic—think of a story of a serial killer on the loose—but much of it has a fantastic element— ghosts, vampires, etc.—which is why it is sometimes called “dark fantasy.” Which brings us to the definition of fantasy. Here’s one I just made up, but I think it’s pretty good: a story is a fantasy when the events within it violate physical laws as we know them and the story either makes no effort to justify that violation or else attributes it to magic or supernatural forces. That’s a broad definition; but then, fantasy is a broad genre, with deep roots, from Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey to Shakespeare’s The Tempest, Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, and, of course, J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. 20

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The Manuscript Evaluation Service assists writers at all levels of development who would like a professional response (not editing) to their unpublished work. The service is available to all Saskatchewan writers, and uses the talents of Saskatchewan Writers’ Guild (SWG) published members. The SWG offers this service with the generous support of the Saskatchewan Arts Board. You will receive a written evaluation that includes the following: • an editorial assessment of your manuscript in progress • a summary of the strengths and weaknesses in terms of publishability • advice on steps that you may take to further develop your manuscript or advice on marketing and publicity • a response for up to three specific questions that you may submit with your manuscript separately Your manuscript will be sent to a published author— either one we select who will then give you an anonymous evaluation, or one you select with the author's permission and approval by the Program Officer. For more information please visit http://www.skwriter. com/?s=programsservices&p=manuscriptevaluation service; phone (306)791-7743 or email programs@

November/December 2010

deal with those same issues in a fantasy, where perhaps the humans would be modified by magic rather than science, but the issues, of otherness and alienation and religious persecution, would be the same. But it would be much harder to wrestle with those questions in a mainstream novel, because we don’t yet have any humans genetically modified so as to be distinct from the rest of us: and the moment I introduce them, I’m writing science fiction. In 20 years’ time, though, they may well be the subject of mainstream fiction.

fantasy. Here’s another reason, and every bit as important: fiction is entertainment, and a ripping good yarn with intergalactic empires, aliens, spaceships, space princesses and, yes, talking squid, is my idea of great entertainment.

Science fiction and fantasy encompasses everything from grim near-future cautionary tales about cities flooded by rising oceans to madcap adventures about sword-swinging female barbarians battling giant spiders. All of time, space and imagination are your playground, which is why I’ve never understood why I’m so often See how that works? asked why I write this stuff. To me the greater puzzlement Having said all that, that’s the is that so many writers don’t! “eat your vegetables” rationale for writing science fiction and

2010 Fall Conference–Jet Streams: The Winds of Change by Geoffrey Ursell, presented at the Founders Panel In the summer of 1973, Barbara Sapergia and I moved back to Regina. We both went to the SWG conference at the United Church centre in the Qu’Appelle Valley in 1974, where I became a Board member. One of the highlights of that conference was meeting George Ryga and having a one-on-one conversation with him about writing plays.

a career as a writer, composer, and musician. This has involved considerable freelance work for CBC radio and television, including script writing, interviewing, and performing. During this time I have also been a member of the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild. Recently, I have been producing an lp record of Saskatchewan songwriters with a Canada Council grant, and I am one of four founding members of a publishing cooperative [that would be Coteau Books]. I believe I have a good knowledge of the range and nature of artistic activity in the province, and a familiarity with related government institutions

But perhaps you do. Or want to. Or perhaps you’re just curious about this field of literature, home of the never-was and the still-might-be, rather than the good old here-and-now. Over the next few columns, I’ll introduce you to the writers, books and trends making waves in “speculative fiction” (sigh), point you to some additional resources, provide some writing tips, and even offer up a few markets for your own fantastic fiction. I hope you enjoy the ride! And finally, if you have any specific questions, I’m all ears (which in a fantasy or science fiction story is not necessarily metaphorical). Email me at and watch for an answer in a future column! and the media.” Thankfully, I didn’t get that job. But in the fall of 1975, I got another, non-paying one—President of the SWG. The conference was in Saskatoon. Judith Merill, the science fiction writer was there, and John Patrick Gilese from the Department of Culture in Alberta, who told us all only to write what we knew was going to make money, that had a market. It cost me $75.80 to attend— conference fees and accommodation at the University residence included. At an average inflation rate of 5% a year for

It was a busy and exciting time for me. As I described in an application to the Department of Culture and Youth (as the Department of Tourism, Parks, Culture and Sport was then called) for a Cultural Consultant job, “For the past two years, 1973-1975, Geoffrey Ursell, Dave Arnason, Ken Mitchell, Myrna Kostash, and I have been making Rudy Wiebe November/December 2010

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35 years, that would now be $418.11. So in today’s dollars, this conference costs about the same. As a point of interest, my total freelance income from the year was just under $2,000. My expenses were just over $2,000. My net was -$41.31. Fortunately, I was teaching parttime at the University of Regina, and Barbara had a government job. The Canada Council grant, from a program called Explorations, was $4,700, but that was all spent on the lp: paying the recording studio (there was, strangely enough, a state-ofthe-art, 4-track studio in a basement in Esterhazy to which we made several trips), the Robert Currie, Ken Mitchell, and Caroline Heath musicians, getting the cover designed, and pressing the album. tural Committee had been on, often ending at three or four When I was elected, Anne Szu- established in 1974, receiving the next morning. But helping migalski said to another Guild funds from the provincial lottery establish significant levels of member. “I think he’ll be good. system, a portion of the profits funding for many provincial He’s got lots of energy.” When from which were dedicated to cultural organizations. she realized I’d overheard, she culture. We wanted to put in said, “You weren’t supposed an application to them. They One other thing: Caroline Heath to hear that,” and we laughed. were aghast. I remember hav- was editor of Grain. She wasn’t I was President, there was ing a fierce argument with one getting paid. We put an amount a good board, but no staff. of the committee members at of $6,000 or so in our budget The total budget was about a Canada Council sponsored application and got the money. $10,000. barbecue on the shores of When I told her about this sucWascana marsh. He was furious cess, she said she didn’t want Then we heard about a Canada that a federal agency had given to get paid. She viewed being Council committee travelling the us money for Nik’s position, and the editor as a form of sacred land and planning to make a now we were trying to secure trust and duty. Over dinner at stop in Saskatoon on November ongoing provincial funding. her home after a board meet13 and 14, 1975. Barbara and How outrageous could we be? ing in Saskatoon, I said that I set up a meeting with them. perhaps her other editors might Robert Fulford, then editor of Our arguments won the day, like some pay for their work. Saturday Night magazine, was and Nik’s job was saved. With on the committee. “What would the help of Nik’s hard work and Even—I didn’t plead, I sugbe the one thing that would our combined skill in applying gested—it might be useful to improve the situation for writers for grants, the budget went her. She eventually accepted. in the province?” they asked us. from $10,000 to $80,000 by And that’s how payments to Barbara passionately said, “A the time Judy Krause took over editors of Grain began. paid employee at the Writers' as President in the fall of 1976. Guild.” I agreed. At 5% inflation over 35 years, Finally, I can’t stop without that’s $440,000 in today’s some sincere words of praise “All right,” they said. “We’ll dollars. And using the same and thanks for Nik’s work as give you money for one year.” method of calculation, there the first executive director. A should be 5.52 full-time staff. phrase he often heard, and I’m We struck a hiring committee. We’re doing better than that. sure grew to haunt his dreams, Received applications. Interwhen some new idea about viewed candidates. And hired The Saskatchewan Trust Cul- programming came up, we said, Nik Burton as the first executive tural Committee took its re- “It’s all part of your job, Nik.” director early in 1976. venge on me, by inviting me to Because we had no idea when join them. Which I did in the we began what parts the job “Your first job, Nik,” I said, “is to fall of 1977, not leaving until actually had. In fact, do we yet? find your salary for next year.” the spring of 1981. Going to The Saskatchewan Trust Cul- meetings which went on and 22

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November/December 2010

Celebrating the Guild by Robert Currie, presented at the SWG Founders Panel Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to this celebration of the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild. Having been a Guild member for 37 years, I know how valuable the Guild is to the writers of this province. I suspect most of you feel the same way. Peter Gzowski once said that the Saskatchewan Writers Guild is the best writers’ organization in the country, and if he were alive today, I doubt that he’d change his mind. No wonder we salute people like Jean Freeman and Ken Mitchell who, more than forty years ago, saw the need for a writers’ guild and got it started. Ken became not only its first chairman but also the founding editor of Grain. There are many reasons for celebrating the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild, but one that particularly appeals to me is the fact that the Guild has done such a fine job of fostering a sense of community among our writers. In this province writers really do root for one another and cheer each other’s accomplishments—as we do today with Dianne Warren, Sandra Birdsell and Allan Casey short-listed for Governor General’s Awards. Perhaps, we cheer each other on because so many of us come together every year at the annual Guild conference—an event that produces all kinds of wonderful memories. I must admit, however, that it took a lot to get me out to my first conference back in June of 1973. After all, it was a writers’ guild, wasn’t it? There’d be real writers there, not just pretenders like myself. At the time I was putting out a little literary magazine called Salt, and one day there appeared in the mail an invitation to talk about it at the Guild conference. Now, Salt needed all the publicity it could

get; so I couldn’t very well refuse. Still, when I found out I was on a marketing panel with the CBC’s Kay Sadlemyer and the Western Producer’s Rusty MacDonald, editors who paid contributers, not with complimentary copies, but with cold, hard cash, I felt like fleeing back to Moose Jaw. Still, I hung around on Friday night for a dramatic reading of Ken Mitchell’s This Train and—thanks to the Gateway Players—forgot my nervousness for a time while lost in the wonderful world of Mitchell’s drama. The next day I remember being seated beside Lyn Goldman at the luncheon and feeling reassured at how willing this epitome of sophistication was to converse with a lout like me. Ah, but then came the marketing panel. I’d hardly finished my few words about Salt, when one guy rose from the audience, an angry old curmudgeon who seemed to me like some kind of fire-breathing dragon. He shook his fist and roared that Salt was the dirtiest damned magazine he’d ever seen. Now what he said was true—for the magazine’s pages were often smudged with fingerprints and stained with gobs of Gestetner ink—but I was almost positive that that wasn’t what he meant. No, he said, the magazine was filthy, it belonged in the toilet. I was stunned. In fact, the only thing that saved me was a dim memory surfacing from somewhere in the midst of my panic, something about a letter that had described Alden Nowlan’s poems in exactly the same way. When this guy admitted to writing that letter, all I could say was that I rather liked Nowlan’s company. I suppose I was still in shock at the AGM when I was elected Guild Chairman. People seemed to think the job was right for either me or history writer Jim McWilliams. I can’t remember how it happened; we may have flipped a coin, or played “Rock, Scissors, Paper,” but it ended up with me as Chair and Jim as Vice Chair. Which is how the November/December 2010

Guild came to be run for two years by the so-called Moose Jaw Mafia. I still remember my first official function. I was staying in Gordie Howe Park— camping fees being significantly less than the scandalous $15 a night charged by the Bessborough Hotel. Anyway, I was on the pay phone outside the park office doing my duty by phoning Caroline Heath—who quickly agreed to become the second editor of Grain, and a good one she proved to be. In later years Gail Bowen once paid tribute to Caroline Heath as “an ardent and accomplished editor.” She told the old writer’s joke about an editor being like “the general who comes down from the hills after the battle is over and shoots the survivors,” but she noted that most writing is far better because of the suggestions of astute editors like Caroline, which is one reason we honour Caroline’s memory through the annual Heath lectures. It was a different Guild in the old days. We were proud when we increased the membership from 115 to 146, proud too of our volunteers, people like Pat Krause, who transformed a rather bland newsletter into Freelance, a vibrant publication everyone looked forward to; people like Mildred Rose who volunteered to do the bookkeeping (although back then there weren’t a lot of books to keep); people like Lloyd Person, who put on a wonderful conference in the Qu’Appelle Valley, with an exciting mix of locals like Geoffrey Ursell and John Hicks and such Canadian literary icons as Hugh Hood and George Ryga. There were, of course, no paid employees in those days. In fact, the budget that we proposed to the Arts Board in May of 1974 requested an operating grant of $10, 884. 96. We raised $712 ourselves—from membership fees, adults paying $5 and students $2. Oh, we had great plans in 1974: we were already sponsoring writers’ workshops, assisting SWG Freelance


local writers’ groups, running a literary competition for fiction and poetry, and publishing the winners in a chapbook called Smoke Signals, but we were hoping to do more: to get honoraria for Grain’s editor and the competition convenor, to run a non-fiction contest, and to create a major literary award for a Saskatchewan writer of merit. These days we thank Cheryl and Henry Kloppenburg for establishing exactly that kind of award. Back in 1974 we didn’t get what we wanted, but things began to change during the two years that Geoffrey Ursell served as president. He was, I think, one of the most energetic and innovative presidents we’ve ever had, and he figured out a way to pay for the Guild’s first employee, a young fellow named Nik Burton. Judy Krause, who was Guild president from ‘77 to ‘79 claimed that, “for a volunteer organization, [having Nik on the payroll] was the equivalent of a teenager getting a driver’s license and the keys to the family car.” No matter what the task, they could say, “Hey Nik, it’s part of your job.” A few years later, Bill Klebeck reported that, during his presidency, Nik remained the only paid employee. In Bill’s words, “the grinning bearded soul of Nik Burton single-handedly drove the machine.” One of the great accomplishments of the Guild is its writing contests—for both short and long manuscripts, and the winners of those contests have often gone on to publication and national prominence. Those contests have been of great importance in providing many of us with our first writing successes and reminding others that we really are writers. Some of you may remember Pat Krause holding up her prize cheque at an awards brunch and saying, “I needed this! 'The Author' is a true story about a woman who knows she still has darker hair than Dianne Warren, is thinner than Suzanne Longbottom, younger than Shelley Leedahl, and that she’s a little 24

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old lady in gold glitter runningshoes who’s writing as fast as she can . . .” Those contests often provide the motivation that keeps the rest of us writing as fast as we can too.

worried. There are good reasons why our former Guild president is known as Rider Bob. I suppose my most vivid Guild memory is another personal one, the 1992 performance of Tabloid Love, by the Poets Combine. This is a story I’ve told before, and I still find it hard to believe. There were five of us working together and wondering if maybe we were out of our minds in what we were trying to

There have been a lot of Guild conferences over the years— and I think I’ve made it to at least thirty-four of them, which means a lot of memories. For years I had the pleasure of driving to the AGMs with Gary Hyland, who could sing along to the radio almost as badly as I did myself. What Gary was good at was Monty P y t h o n routine— which usually meant a carload of people pulling up to the conference site with smiles Out-going President Jerry Haigh presents Bob on o u r Calder (above) and Gerald Hill (below) with the faces. Ah, Hyland Award for volunteerism and service to the the memo- writing community. ries. At one conference here in Saska to o n , I r e m e m ber getting some astute advice from that great Canadian poet, John Newlove. “Currie,” he said, “you should never, never wear brown shoes with blue do: putting our individual poems pants.” Just a few years ago, into dramatic form, working I recall sneaking off to my room entirely from memory, even with Bob Calder and Warren having a director choreograph Cariou after the Heath Lecture. our every move—some of those We wanted to watch the end of moves as complex as modern the Rider game, but my room dance. This was real performwas suddenly louder than the ance poetry, and we were going hotel bar, and I was afraid the on stage in Regina’s City Hall hotel staff would toss us onto before one of the biggest audithe street. Needless to say, it ences in Guild history. We had wasn’t Warren who had me fancy lighting, complex musical November/December 2010

cues, rented sound equpment, paid technicians—and I think it’s safe to say that we were all petrified. Then Bruce Rice somehow performed a cartwheel while reciting a poem, and we knew we were going to survive. What a lot of great sessions we’ve had on Guild programs! I think of Katherine Lawrence and Glen Sorestad demonstrating their deep love for poetry in a joint session about love poetry; Brenda Baker and Steve Smith doing their best to imagine a writing life in ways that might raise possibilities for all of us; and a threesome: Kelly-Anne Riess talking about what it’s like beginning a young writer in this day and age, Ven Begamudre discussing mid-career difficulties, David Carpenter citing the problems faced by older writers—problems he seems to have handled well enough; he’s had two books published since he made that speech at last fall’s conference. And think of all the wonderful writers who’ve delivered Caroline Heath lectures: writers from away like Alberto Manguel and Janice Kulyk Keefer; writers from here like Bonnie Burnard and Sean Virgo. And what about that literary symposium held at Fort San in 1987 when critics and writers came together in a hopeless attempt to sum up Saskatchewan writing? Through four incredible days in June, ideas flew, gossip flourished and tensions rose as one hundred and fifty of us tried to draw some conclusions about our literature. I remember being intrigued by Patrick Lane’s comments: “Is there a particular poetry in this place?” he asked, and added, “If place is important, it’s because it is lucky enough to have been there when a poet sang.” “Words rise up,” said Patrick, “because it is in us to sing. Surely that is enough. Surely it is what we are here to celebrate.” And what we still celebrate some 23 years after that historic symposium. And celebrate is what we do in fine

Robert Currie, Jean Freeman, Geoffrey Ursell, Ken Mitchell, Kay Parley, and Glen Sorestad with the SWG`s 40th Anniversary cake. style, for example, at our open sector. My very first session mic sessions, with Gerry Hill’s was the Aboriginal Members wacky introductions somehow Focus Group, which is amazing inspiring us to move beyond in itself to actually see other ourselves and share our songs Aboriginals who are writers and interested folk in this arena. with others. Our people very much practice In this Guild of ours, we have a oral tradition and writers are a scarce breed. I hope to see lot to celebrate. vast changes as our people Before we wrap up this ses- embrace this form of expression and dig into the Guild’s sion and use various media in gigantic birthday cake, I’d like the process. Seeing the other to quote the words of another Aboriginal writers opened up a of the Guild’s former presidents. fabulous opportunity to network Regine Haensel once said that and was also an encouragement “the SWG is one of the best to me in that they have broken run, most member-responsive ground that will help others to and member-involved organiza- forge ahead. tions in the province.” There’s still a lot of truth in that assess- At the post-lecture reception ment, and today we celebrate, and open mic I enjoyed hearnot just the Guild, but all the ing some good questions put forward which gave us a lot to members who make it work. chew on following Don McKay's lecture. During this time there were a few writers that did readings. This was the absolute first time I had ever heard a reading! Wow, it gives a book so much flavour when you acby Jean Hill tually hear it from the author's As a new member, as well as own lips and see the expression being an aboriginal woman, I and passion as they share it. found this conference to be a large gathering of grey heads On Saturday morning I could which to me is a good sign of hardly wait to attend the memthe wealth of knowledge and bers only Hot Issues session. expression we have in this What could possibly be a hot isprovince from our more mature sue among writers, I wondered?

A New Perspective

November/December 2010

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This session certainly opened my eyes to see how the members work in committees and attempt to work in harmony with the board. Some sour notes where played in this session but the overall symphony was heard by the members in attendance as each shared something that we individually felt would contribute to the betterment of the SWG as a whole. It was actually refreshing to see a board not attempt to control its members into quiet submission but to actually allow free speech to vent.

lishers are in Saskatchewan and the kind of work they do. I did not have any idea that we had that many in our own province. When I got my book published, I did not even look in Saskatchewan as my first place simply because I had not explored locally—I simply went on the internet and started educating myself on what is even involved in getting a book published, whether selfpublishing or hoping to win the lottery by submitting work to a zillion publishers. There were lots of suggestions on the Internet on where to look, The Changes in Publishing but I didn't see anything in my session gave me some clues searches that pointed me back as to who some of the pub- to Saskatchewan.

Short Manuscript Competition winners L-R: Lisa Wilson, June Mitchell, AndrĂŠa Ledding, Bruce Rice and Regine Haensel

Mansel Robinson is presented with the John V. Hicks Long Manuscript Award by Judith Silverthorne.


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November/December 2010

At the Short Manuscript Awards Luncheon the best part was simply networking with my table mates. We laughed and had great moments of fun as we took turns telling stories and learning about each other. Since I was so new, everyone was willing to spend a few moments sharing their adventures in writing as well as their progress in their work as authors. One common theme seemed to show that authors never seem to get paid enough. Oh well. The readings were a highlight as I again learned more about this process. Seems there is always something to learn. Writing and the Internet Book was much different from what I expected. I had no idea we were going to be getting such knowledgeable people on these topics; therefore, it was a pleasure to listen to the history of writing and bring it into our era of releasing published works whether electronically or through the printed page. As a group, we all learned that the Internet has a lot of potential in how we write as well as how we communicate to others through the various channels. The personal touch is not lost through the use of Facebook, Twitter and blogs as we so clearly learned about in this session. My favourite session of all was when I listened to a reading by Myrna Kostash. I liked her spunk as she pursued with great diligence the answers to her probing questions about "Demetrius" and that reactions to her probe from her victims at times went to a state of ignoring her. When a writer is a superb researcher like Myrna, there is a piece of literature that has value, meaning and gives back many times over to our community through the knowledge that is collected and then laid out for the people interested in those topics. Bravo Myrna.

I delighted myself in this conference and mini-focus groups. I asked questions and learned lots of neato things; I met a broad range of personalities and enjoyed the works they submitted. The book table was a feast all in itself. If a local bookstore even had half of

what was on those tables the people of Saskatchewan would be the richer for it. Saskatchewan writers are a great bunch of people. I'm so enriched for coming to this conference and look forward to meeting some of the local authors in Saskatoon and area where I

live. At this conference I found myself in a parasitic state of taking, but I look forward to giving back to the community of writers down the road when I figure out what I'm doing. Good conference SWG!

Paula Jane Remlinger, Linda Aksomitis, Sandra Davis, and Sharon Hamilton

Anne Patton and Jo Bannatyne-Cugnet

Mike Thompson, Gerry Hill, and Robert Currie are eager to learn the moves from the dance instructor.

Mike Thompson, Martine Noel-Maw, Tracy Hamon and Danica Lorer

Jerry Haigh bids a fond farewell to out-going board members Sharon Adam (L) and Gloria Boerma.

June Mitchell and Morgan Traquair

November/December 2010

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Before the Guild By Kay Parley When I was four, someone asked me what I was going to be when I grew up and I said, "I'm going to write books." There had to be some influences around to put such an idea in my mind. I grew up in a communIty where most of the pioneers were educated in Scotland and Scotland was a very literate country. Soon after arrival, one settler began a hand-written community newspaper. Another wrote detailed accounts of his W. O. Mitchell talks writing with student Norma Jean Beck. experiences and sent them home, where they were published in The Forties proved to be the The atmosphere when they The Ayrshire Post. heigh day of radio. It reached first arrived at the school every corner of Canada. While must have resembled the first I came to Canada, via the birth television emphasizes photog- outpost in space—the coming canal, in 1923, on time to know raphy, radio is the medium of together of the humanoids many of those old pioneers. Two the word. According to Andrew across countless starry miles. of them were poets. (Well, per- Allan, then head of CBC Drama, haps I should say "rhymsters," "The goal is to say something W.O. Mitchell began to teach but their work wasn't half bad.) so well there is absolutely no there in 1952, and I enrolled Oratory was quite exciting. My way of saying it better." in the writing class. I also spent Dad had the Scots' flair for two years in the early fifties colourful expression. I was also In 1947-48, when I attended as Assistant Executive Secrefortunate that my mother and Lorne Greene's Academy of tary of the Saskatchewan Arts four of her siblings were teach- Radio Arts in Toronto, both Mr. Board. That included writing ers. They loved words, bandied Allan and writer Lister Sinclair endless reports, news releasthem about like a game, and were my teachers. On returning es and promotional material. insisted on proper usage. My to Saskatchewan, I perceived There was no by-line glory, but mother wrote and published a what seemed to be a wide gulf it was good practice. few pieces. between the limited efforts of prairie writers and the world I Every community had a column- had just experienced. However, ist contributing news items to in the next few years there was local papers. School readers growing enthusiasm—maybe contained excellent material, so even a hunger—among creawe were challenged. (Victor Carl tive people. Friesen says a lot about that in A Sky Full of Dreams.) Farm pa- In 1950, the newly-formed Saspers carried childrens' pages and katchewan Arts Board (the first many began to publish at the age Arts Board in North America) of eight or nine. established the Summer School of the Arts at Fort Qu'Appelle. Until then it seemed there The Thirties was a down time, of had been no way of bringing course, though Wallace Stegner together the scattering of creawas writing. Saskatchewan was tive people isolated on farms an agricultural province and the and in small towns all over the majority lived in rural areas, so province. farm papers were the most popu- They needed each other's suplar, though they came from Mani- port and encourgement as well toba and Montreal, and regular as stimulation and criticism but It wasn't all hard work! W. O. Mitchell supports acrobats columnists in those papers were had not been getting it. who would probably prefer the best-known and most-read to be nameless. writers on the prairie.


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we were similar. We weren't "big time" or particularly trying to be. We were just happy to write and to get into print where we could reach a few readers. I know that, for my part, I wanted readers more than I wanted money. I thought it was good for writers to have to work at other careers as well, because it broadened experience and gave us perspective. Relaxing on the beach at Bay Say Tah, It is legend that every Saskatchewan writer a popular after-class activity. got a start with The At Fort Qu'Appelle, the ac- Western Producer. Editor Rusty commodations in the old army Macdonald had a genius for huts at the foot of the golf helping beginners. course were not luxurious but I thought I wa s special when the atmosphere of the valley he asked me to meet him for was magic. It was so exciting, coffee so we could discuss my so joyous! I have never found first article, but Verley tells an words to describe it adequately. even better story: Verley Robson remembers hillclimbing in the evenings and "He (Rusty Macdonald) once the "meaningful chatter in the called on me at home. My toddler came flying downstairs lounge." from his nap, stark naked, and Bill Mitchell was a wonderful R.M. said, 'Oh, so that's why teacher and we learned a lot we haven't received any stories about writing. We also found lately. An editor making houselike-minded people with whom calls?" to bond—and we bonded. A few years ago, Norma Hawkins Verley wrote short stories and told Verley Robson of being profiles for The Family Herald in a situation where she was as well. She commented, asked to recall a place that "Weren't those the days? First had been especially happy and drafts and all published." meaningful in her life, "... and that was the place she fondly For a few years, life got in the remembered, with all of us way of career for Verley, and there." The friendships begun by the time she got back to at Valley Centre in the 1950s writing seriously the Guild was never ended. We did not estab- formed. She has won a few lish a formal organization but awards. for a time referred to ourselves as "The Fort Qu'Appelle Writ- I did some work for school ers" and used a circular letter broadcasts and educational journals. to keep in touch.

C a r e e r s o f t h e o l d Fo r t Qu'Appelle writers didn't run parallel, but with the exception of Audrey Down, who left to follow a successful journalistic career internationally, I think

In those days the United Church Publishing Company welcomed both fiction and non-fiction from all across Canada, so this prairie girl found a niche there. I graduated in psychiatric nurs-

November/December 2010

ing and spent a decade writing for professional journals. Interest in local history rose in a ground swell in the 1960s and dozens of communities recorded their past. I finished my Moffat history in 1965 and it was one of the early ones. By the time the Guild was formed, I had been publishing for 19 years. I now have three more books to market and I still love to write columns for weeklies. Out there beyond the cities, they speak to where' Saskatchewan "is at." The members of the old group are nearly all gone now, people like Naomi Arps, Julius Friesen and Kay Nouch. Norma Beck Hawkins (author of Chokecherry) died recently. One of the best known was Pat Armstrong. She wrote of the old workshops in Freelance in June, 1995, and mentioned Marlace Zacharias. Year by year, different people found the magic and added to our numbers. Verley Robson is still writing, and retired journalist Audrey Down is back home in Moose Jaw, now trying to complete books she has planned for years after being inspired by W.O. Mitchell's classes. Perhaps it is because the classes were small that the ties were so strong, but more likely it was because we were on that space ship that anchored at Fort Qu'Appelle and provided us a writers' rende-vous. Thank you to Audrey Down and Verley Robson for their valuable input as I was writing this article.

Kay Parley is the recipient of a Lifetime Membership to the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild. She has been a member of the SWG since 1970.

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2011 Saskatchewan Book Award Shortlisted Titles SCHOLARLY WRITING AWARD Sponsored by Pamela & Ralph Goodale

Tracy Hamon, Interruptions in Glass (Coteau Books)

Margaret Kovach, Indigenous Methodologies: Characteristics, Conversations, and Contexts (University of Toronto Press)

Brenda Niskala, For The Love of Strangers (Coteau Books)

Dwight G. Newman, The Duty to Consult: New Relationships With Aboriginal Peoples (Purich Publishing Ltd.) Carol Schick and James McNinch,"I Thought Pocahontas Was a Movie": Movie"*:Perspectives Perspectiveson onRace/ Race/Culture Culture Binaries Binaries in Education in Education and Service and Service ProfesProfessions sions (Canadian (Canadian Plains Plains Research Research CentreCentre – UniverUniversity sity of Regina) of Regina) FIRST PEOPLES’ WRITING AWARD Sponsored by Rasmussen, Rasmussen and Charowsky LPC Barristers and Solicitors Jo-Ann Episkenew, Taking Back Our Spirits: Indigenous Literature, Public Policy, and Healing (University of Manitoba Press) James (Sa'ke'j) Youngblood Henderson, Indigenous Diplomacy and the Rights of Peoples: Achieving UN Recognition (Purich Publishing Ltd.)

Dianne Warren, Cool Water (Harper Collins Publishers Ltd.) AWARD FOR POETRY Honouring Anne Szumigalski Sponsored by the Saskatchewan Arts Board Tracy Hamon, Interruptions in Glass (Coteau Books) Don Kerr, The dust of just beginning (Athabasca University Press) Dave Margoshes, Dimensions of an Orchard (Black Moss Press) Andrew Stubbs, Endgames (Thistledown Press) YOUNG ADULT LITERATURE AWARD Sponsored by SaskEnergy Arthur Slade, The Hunchback Assignments (Harper Collins Publishers Ltd.)

Marlene Millar, ed. Dene Honü: Stories From The People (Birch Narrows Denè Nation)

Arthur Slade, The Dark Deeps: The Hunchback Assignments II (Harper Collins Publishers Ltd.)

Lynn Acoose, Sherry Farrell Racette, James Lanigan, Linda Many Guns, Susan McArthur, Neal McLeod, Dan Ring, James Henderson: Henderson, Wicite Owapi Wicasa, Owapi Wicasa, 'thethe man man who who paints paints thethe oldold men', men (The Mendel Art Gallery)

Alice Kuipers, The Worst Thing She Ever Did (Harper Trophy Canada)

SASKATOON BOOK AWARD Sponsored by Saskatoon Public Library and the City of Saskatoon

PRIX DU LIVRE FRANÇAIS Sponsored by Conseil culturel fransaskois

Elizabeth Brewster, Time and Seasons (Oberon Press) David Carpenter, A Hunter’s Confession (Greystone Books) David Carpenter, Welcome to Canada (The Porcupine's Quill) Alice Kuipers, The Worst Thing She Ever Did (Harper Trophy Canada) Yann Martel, Beatrice & Virgil (Alfred A. Knopf Canada) Alexandra Popoff, Sophia Tolstoy: A Biography (Free Press)

Beverley Brenna, Something To Hang On To (Thistledown Press)

David Baudemont, Citrouille et Kiwi (Éditions de la nouvelle plume) Martine Noël-Maw, Le Trésor du Wascana (Éditions de la nouvelle plume) Martine Noël-Maw, Dans le pli des collines, 2e éd. (Éditions de la nouvelle plume) Françoise Sigur-Cloutier et Mireille Lavoie (éditrices), Le Théâtre Fransasksois: Recueil de pièces de théâtre –Tome - Tome 4 (Éditions de la nouvelle plume) FICTION AWARD Sponsored by SaskPower Byrna Barclay, The Forest Horses (Coteau Books)

REGINA BOOK AWARD Sponsored by Drs. Morris & Jacqui Shumiatcher

Sandra Birdsell, Waiting for Joe (Random House Canada)

Sandra Birdsell, Waiting for Joe (Random House Canada)

David Carpenter, Welcome to Canada (The Porcupine's Quill)


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November/December 2010

2011 Saskatchewan Book Award Shortlisted Titles Yann Martel, Beatrice & Virgil (Alfred A. Knopf Canada) Kathleen Wall, Blue Duets (Brindle and Glass Publishing Ltd.) Dianne Warren, Cool Water (Harper Collins Publishers Ltd.) NON-FICTION AWARD Sponsored by the University of Saskatchewan David Carpenter, A Hunter's Confession (Greystone Books) Heather Kuttai, Maternity Rolls: Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Disability (Fernwood Publishing) Phyllis Nakonechny, Vidh: A Book of Mourning (Hagios Press) Alexandra Popoff, Sophia Tolstoy: A Biography (Free Press) FIRST BOOK AWARD Honouring FIRST BOOK Brenda AWARD Macdonald Riches Honouring Brenda Macdonald Riches Sponsored by Agrium Sponsored by Agrium Chris Clinton, Next Year Perhaps (Olympia Publishers) Chris Clinton, Next Year Perhaps (Olympia Publishers) Amy Jo Ehman, Prairie Feast: A Writer's Journey Home Amy Jo Ehman, for Dinner Prairie (Coteau Feast: Books) A Writer's Journey Home for Dinner (Coteau Books) Dianne Greenlay, Quintspinner: A Pirate's Quest Dianne Greenlay, (iUniverse, Inc.) Quintspinner: A Pirate's Quest (iUniverse, Inc.) Phyllis Nakonechny, Vidh: A Book of Mourning Phyllis Vidh: A Book of Mourning (HagiosNakonechny, Press) (Hagios Press) Bernadette Wagner, this hot place (Thistledown Bernadette Wagner, this hot place (Thistledown Press) Press) BOOK OF THE YEAR AWARD In Memory BOOK OF THE of Mary YEARSutherland AWARD In Memory of Mary Sutherland Sponsored by the University of Regina Sponsored by the University of Regina David Carpenter, A Hunter's Confession (GreyDavid Carpenter, A Hunter's Confession (Greystone Books) stone Books) David Carpenter, Welcome to Canada (The Porcupine's David Carpenter, Quill) Welcome to Canada (The Porcupine's Quill) Dave Margoshes, Dimensions of an Orchard Dave Margoshes, Dimensions of an Orchard (Black Moss Press) (Black Moss Press) Phyllis Nakonechny, Vidh: A Book of Mourning Phyllis Vidh: A Book of Mourning (HagiosNakonechny, Press) (Hagios Press) Alexandra Popoff, Sophia Tolstoy: A Biography Alexandra Popoff, Sophia Tolstoy: A Biography (Free Press) (Free Press) Dianne Warren, Cool Water (Harper Collins PubDianne Ltd.) Warren, Cool Water (Harper Collins Publishers lishers Ltd.)

FIRST PEOPLES’ PUBLISHING AWARD Sponsored by the University of Saskatchewan Purich Publishing Ltd., Indigenous Diplomacy and the Rights of Peoples: Achieving UN Recognition, James (Sa'ke'j) Youngblood Henderson PUBLISHING IN EDUCATION AWARD Sponsored by the University of Regina, Faculty of Arts Canadian Plains Research Center – University of of - University Regina, Thirty Years of Journalism and Democracy in Canada, The Minifie Lectures, 1981-2010, Mitch Diamantopoulos Canadian Plains Research Center – University of of - University Regina, "I Thought Pocahontas Was a Movie", Movie"*: Perspectives on Race/Culture Binaries in Education and Service Professions, Carol Schick and James McNinch Canadian Plains Research Center – University of of - University Regina, Torn From Our Midst: Voices of Grief, Healing and Action from the Missing Indigenous Women Conference, 2008, A. Brenda Anderson, Wendee Kubik, Mary Rucklos Hampton Coteau Books, We Want You to Know: Kids Talk About Bullying, Deborah Ellis Purich Publishing Ltd., The Duty to Consult: New Relationships With Aboriginal Peoples, Dwight G. Newman AWARD FOR PUBLISHING Sponsored by the Ministry of Tourism, Parks, Culture & Sport Canadian Plains Research Center – - University University of of Regina, Torn From Our Midst: Voices of Grief, Healing and Action from the Missing Indigenous Women Conference, 2008, A. Brenda Anderson, Wendee Kubik, Mary Rucklos Hampton Coteau Books, Prairie Feast: A Writer's Journey Home for Dinner, Amy Jo Ehman Coteau Books, Fishtailing, Wendy Phillips Hagios Press, After the Words, Jennifer Londry Hagios Press, Fallout, Sandra Ridley The Mendel Art Gallery, James Henderson: Wicite Owapi Wicasa, Wicasa,the 'theman manwho whopaints paintsthe theold old men',Lynn men, LynnAcoose, Acoose,Sherry SherryFarrell FarrellRacette, Racette,James James Lanigan, Linda Many Guns, Susan McArthur, Neal McLeod, Dan Ring

November/December 2010

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MFA in Writing at University of Saskatchewan

requirements and standards of the University’s College of Graduate Studies and Research. This inevitably meant some compromise.

by Robert Calder

The MFA in Writing is a two-year program comprising writing workshop classes and a major writing project (a novel, a sequence of poems or short stories, a play, or a substantial piece of non-fiction). In the first year, students will take two three-credit-unit workshop classes in which they will be required to present work in two genres. As well, and this is one of the areas where the program is unique, the students will be permitted to take any threecredit-unit graduate or undergraduate course offered in the university provided they can meet any prerequisites and can demonstrate that the course will contribute to the completion of their writing project. So, for example, a student writing a novel set during the Riel Rebellion could ask to take a class in Western Canadian history; or a student writing a poetry sequence about the female body could ask

After several years of consultation, research, and development, the Master of Fine Arts in Writing degree has been approved by the University of Saskatchewan and will begin to be offered in September, 2011. Because it is a an MFA rather than a Master of Arts, offered through the new Interdisciplinary Centre for Culture and Creativity rather than the Department of English, the degree will allow students to focus very much more on the development of writing than on the study of literature. As part of the creation of the MFA program, representative groups of Saskatchewan writers twice met with the development committee. Reactions were largely very positive on both occasions, and in the first meeting the writers strongly urged the creation of a program that was “uniquely Saskatchewan.” This was good advice since there are now a number of excellent, well-established writing degree programs in Canada, and any new one would have to carve out new territory. No one, however, could tell the planners what a “uniquely Saskatchewan” degree would look like. Taking this advice, and other suggestions, and consulting the coordinators of other writing degree programs in Canadian universities, the planning committee devised a degree that is unique in several essential ways. In doing so, of course, it had to balance the expectations of the writing community with the rigorous curriculum 32

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to do a reading course with a faculty member in the College of Medicine. Someone writing a play about the Mona Lisa could take an appropriate course in art and art history. In this way, the resources of an entire university are opened to the student. At the end of the first year, the student will be assigned a faculty supervisor, and, following a practice borrowed from the University of Toronto’s MA Program, he or she will also be assigned to a creative supervisor. This will be an established writer from outside the University who will be hired on a contract basis and given professional affiliate status. This affiliate will supervise the completion of the student’s major writing project, meeting with him or her or communicating by email over the summer and through the second year. At the end of this process, the student will submit the project for examination. During the second year, students will take two more three-credit-unit workshop

SPRING EDITORS NEEDED The SWG is accepting applications for the editorial positions of managing editor, poetry, fiction, and nonfiction editors for Spring Volume VII. The managing editor will take on one of the genre editing positions. Please send your literary resume and cover letter to Beth McLean at the SWG, P.O.Box 3986, Regina SK S4P 3R9 or courier/drop off to 205-2314 11th Avenue, Regina S4P 0K1. Applications must be received by 4:30 p.m. on Friday, February 25, 2011. Applicants must be residents of Saskatchewan. The publication will be launched in the fall of 2011 in conjunction with the SWG's fall conference and AGM in Regina. Please call Beth at (306)791-7746 or email if you have any questions.

November/December 2010

A CD Recording of Your Work? So your book of poetry or your novel has come out, and you’re scheduled for a reading at McNally’s or some other public venue. Have you ever thought of having a permanent audio recording of your writing? Think about it. Why not also have a CD recording of you reading your own work that could be included for sale along with your autographed publication? And don’t forget the archives: in that precarious mode called the future, readers, academics, and fans would also have the benefit of a permanent record of you performing your own work. Ray Stephanson has a home studio in Saskatoon and uses state-of-the-art analogue to digital software and hardware to record high quality sound onto CD. CD copies with label, jewel case, cover art (i.e., your photo, brief liner notes) can be produced at very reasonable costs. If you’re interested in finding out about a recording session then please email Ray at

classes during which they will be required to submit some writing in the genres they did not work in during their first year. In both years they will be required to attend a series of fortnightly or monthly colloquia called The Profession of Writing, in which visiting experts will discuss such matters as editing, submission of manuscripts, agents, grant applications, income tax, and other concerns of the professional writer. Entrance requirements and application procedures are described as follows in the University calendar: Entry into the master of Fine Arts in Writing requires a four-year Bachelor’s degree and a strong portfolio of writing. In exceptional cases, applicants without the degree may enter the program on a probationary basis: equivalency will be judged on previous participation in reputable workshops such as those offered by the Banff School of Fine Arts, the Sage Hill Writing Experience, and the Saskatchewan Writers’ Guild; on relevant work experience; and on substantial publication. All applicants must submit to the Coordinator of the MFA in Writing

a statement of intent, indicating the genre(s) in which they wish to specialize. As well, applicants must submit three letters of recommendation, official transcripts, a University of Saskatchewan application form and application fee, and a portfolio of at least thirty pages of published and/or unpublished writing. Applications should arrive no later than February 1, 2011, to be considered for admission in the fall of that year. Late applications will be considered under exceptional circumstances. It is expected that seven students will be admitted in the first year of the program, and that they will be a mixture of recently graduated and mature students. They will be joined by another group in the second year, and together they should form a cohort of committed, talented writers who will encourage and learn from each other as well as from the instructors and supervisors. The MFA program will be coordinated by a faculty member, to be hired during the coming winter, who will be a writer with an established national reputation and some experience in teaching at the university level. This individual, working with UniNovember/December 2010

versity faculty and professional affiliates drawn from the vigorous and respected Saskatchewan writing community, should be able to offer a program that is not only of a high standard but is also unique and “Saskatchewan.” For more information, consult the Interdisciplinary Centre for Culture and Creativity website at

Freelance Advertising Rates Freelance accepts classified and display ads at the following rates: Display ads: Full page: $150; 1/2 Page: $100; 1/4 page: $50; business card: $35 (add GST to above rates; SWG members pay 75 per cent of above rates) Classified ads: Classified ads cost 20 cents per word (plus GST). Ads run in three consecutive issues unless cancelled. (SWG members may place one 25word ad free of charge each year).

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And Another Thing ... by Robert Calder In this issue of Freelance, I’m going to be issuing some opinions, to force the issue if you will, on an issue for which some of you may take issue with me. Writers aren’t normally issued flak jackets, so I’ll just have to absorb whatever verbal darts issue from your metaphorical (I hope) blowguns.

“issues” of your relationship, or unless you are President Obama and you have diplomatic discussion points with Angela Merkel—i.e. German relations with Nato or the valuing of the Euro—you do not have “issues” with someone. You may have difficulties, problems, antagonism, hostility, enmity, or frustration with someone; you may despise, hate, loathe, abhor, abominate, scorn or look down on someone. But you do not have “issues” with them.

Roy Romanow has health issues. No, he is not ill or in physical difficulty. So far as I can see, he’s a very healthy, vigorous, active man still in his prime. But he does have health “issues”: national medicare and pharmacare programs. He shares these issues with federal and provincial governments, the Canadian Medical Association, private medical Unless you share paternity insurance companies, public with someone, where the law forums, and individual memconsiders your children to be bers of the Canadian public. In The issue that I’d like to address is the corruption of language, in particular the abominable current misuse of the word “issue.” As in “I have issues with her,” “he has health issues,” “BP Oil had issues in stopping the oil leak,” or “he had financial issues and had to declare bankruptcy.”

other words, he discusses—or has conversations with—all of these groups over the issues, that is the questions and problems and opportunities of publicly-funded medicare and pharmacare. Perhaps because I have been an English teacher for most of my life, this abuse of “issue,” which, like the creatures in Invasion of the Body Snatchers or zebra mussels in Canadian lakes, sneaked into common usage when we weren’t looking, bothers me. I’m like Tom Stoppard’s autobiographical protagonist, Henry, in his play The Real Thing, who tries to describe his pain on hearing or reading badly written prose. “It hurts,” he says, “It actually hurts.” Over the years I’ve felt Henry’s pain: when “impact” started (incorrectly) to be used as a verb, when “partake of” was twisted into “partake in” and then used (incorrectly) in place of “participate in” (“partake”

TALKING FRESH 9: SASKATCHEWAN POETRY SUMMIT "Talking Fresh 9: Saskatchewan Poetry Summit" will be held on March 4 and 5, 2011 at Luther College in Regina Talking Fresh is an annual festival of writers and writing co-produced, this year, by the Saskatchewan Writersè Guild and Luther College at the University of Regina. What is “Saskatchewan Poetry”? We have no clear idea, really. That’s why we’ve invited four writers. Brenda Schmidt, Karen Solie, Michael Trussler and Dan Tysdal will be the featured writers for “Talking Fresh 9: Saskatchewan Poetry Summit.” They'll share a panel, give readings, and each lead a seminar. We're also working on a hot Saturday night social event . . . stay tuned for the details!


SWG Freelance

November/December 2010

meaning to consume food or drink or to have something), or when people respond with “I’m good” when they mean “I’m well” (unless they are indeed bragging about their moral state). If my reaction seems overly precious, imagine what my wife endures: invariably, her remark that she is “going to lay down” is met by my response that “perhaps you’re also going to lie down.” Whatever one’s sensibilities, can anyone seriously tolerate the execrable practice, in recent Olympic competitions, of saying that a successful athlete has “medalled”? Even more egregious meddling with the language is the newest perversion: commentators remarking that a participant hopes “to podium.” Then there is the current use of “reference” as a verb to replace the perfectly simple and effective “refer” (as in “I reference the Globe and Mail article), and “to gift” instead of “to give” (though, happily I suppose, this means that any of us who have ever received a birthday present can consider ourselves “gifted” writers and “gifted” human beings). But this is all old news. The ugliness and absurdity of this practice was perfectly summed up years ago by the distinguished American linguist Calvin, of Calvin and Hobbes, when he said that “verbing weirds language.” But, the sceptic may ask, aren’t I just a dinosaur, flying pterodactyl-like in the face of the truth that the English language is a constantly evolving and changing medium, enriched over ten centuries by imported words and coinage of new terms? To that I would respond that there is nothing wrong with the importation of foreign words and phrases or the creation of new nouns or adjectives to describe a rapidly developing world: terms such



The Saskatchewan Writers' Guild is seeking applications for the 2011 City of Regina Writing Award, funded by the City of Regina. This competition is an award for literary merit in creative writing; it is open to writers in all genres. The $4,000 award is designed to enable one local writer to work on a specific solo writing project for a three-month period. The award competition is juried by professional writers from outside Saskatchewan. You are eligible to apply for this award if you are 19 years and older and if you have been a Regina resident as of January 1, 2010 and if you have not won the City of Regina Award in the past five years. Applicants may submit one entry to this competition per year. The recipient of the award must complete the threemonth grant period by the end of February 2012. The decision of the jury will be final. Jurors may choose to not award the prize if they believe no submission merits it. For complete guidelines, please visit: http://www. Applications must be postmarked by Friday, January 28, 2010 or via email by midnight at info@skwriter. com. For more information: Tracy Hamon, Program Officer, Saskatchewan Writers' Guild; Phone: 791-7743; Fax: 565-8554; Email:

as “byte,” “app,” “emailing,” “download,” or “palimony.” And, as for the jarring sound and sight of old terms used in new ways, I’ll just have to get accustomed to it or perhaps block it out by determined reading of good literature. In any case, I would have as much luck in stopping the waves of bad usage washing ashore like grimy oil spills as King Canute reportedly did in stopping the tide from coming in. Surely nobody wants an English language version November/December 2010

of the French Academy and its autocratic attempts to preserve the purity of the French language. Where we have the right to complain and to call a halt is when a new linguistic usage is less precise, direct, and effective than what it replaces. This is certainly the case with the new misuse of “issues.” An “issue” is a neutral term: it is a discussion point about something which can be good or bad, a problem or an opporSWG Freelance


tunity, the coping with a disaster or the spending of large sums of unforeseen revenues. Today it is used by many people to mean simply something negative: a problem, concern, difficulty, trouble, disagreement, or conflict. All of these are more specific, direct, and forceful. Similarly, the current expression “have feelings for,” as in “she has feelings for him” or “they have feelings for each other,” is vague, bland, and imprecise. “Feelings” covers such an enormous amount and range of emotions that it is almost meaningless. I have “feelings” for George Bush, Dick Cheney, and Stephen Harper, but I do not believe that they are what is meant in the current usage. How much simpler and more precise it is to say that someone likes, loves, is enamored of, is attracted to, is infatuated with, desires, wants, lusts after,

covets, or cares for someone. But perhaps those who use “issues” and “having feelings for” do not want to be precise and simple. Perhaps we are in an age when public figures and private citizens do not want their true opinions and feelings known, when people are at least afraid of communicating the strength of their emotions about public and private matters. Just as politicians have always hidden behind the passive voice (“mistakes were made”), they now hide behind the euphemistic “issues.” How much more comfortable it is for them to say “there are issues with the oil spill” instead of “we have problems capping the well” or “ the leak is out of control.” How much easier it is to say “there are issues with our relations with China” than “we find China’s human rights practices unacceptable.”

Similarly, perhaps ordinary people—particularly the young—are embarrassed by the expression of strong emotion, not finding it “cool” (to use an antiquated term) to be seen to be enthralled by someone or something. Here I am treading on unfamiliar terrain, being all too many decades beyond youthfulness, but it seems to me that relationships among the young are more fluid, more casual, and often less defined than they used to be. Like the cast of Friends, many young people seem to meet and interact as groups, with easier and less defined one-to-one relationships than perhaps their predecessors struggled with. It may be that the bland and indefinite “have feelings for” more accurately describes an age of less intense commitment. We will know for sure the first time we hear a couple at the altar being asked to promise “to have feelings for, honour, and cherish” each other.

Spring Volume VII Call for Submissions Submissions are being accepted for Spring Volume VII, the SWG's magazine showcasing emerging Saskatchewan writers. Spring editors will consider poetry, fiction, and non-fiction from Saskatchewan residents or members of the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild, from those who have never published to those who have not yet published in book-length form (64 pages) and who have not yet entered into a contract with a book publisher or for self-publishing. Writers selected for publication will receive payment. For submission guidelines visit: Spring_Volume-7-2011.pdf For more information, please contact Beth McLean at (306)791-7746 or via email at Submissions must be received in the SWG office by 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, January 31, 2011.


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November/December 2010

The Reason Why by Wes Funk I feel like I’m in a fish bowl. On display. I am sitting in the middle of the downtown mall, at a card table in the entrance of a bookstore. There is a wrinkled red cloth on top of the table that has been hastily setup in front of me. A few copies of the book I’ve authored are strewn across the table top and there is one poorly made-up sign. The poster I had made to endorse this signing event was a lot more appealing than this one the store manager whipped up. But he already confessed, he doesn’t know where the one I so carefully made is and he strongly suspects he accidently recycled it. Oh well … at least he recycles! Christmas shoppers are whizzing by. They are stressed and antsy and wanting to get tasks complete. Most do not stop to check out my novel. They merely smile at me, as if I’m a puppy in a cage that they half adore and half feel sorry for.

energy into finally publishing his manuscript himself? What makes him order several hundred copies of the book and pound the pavement and make dozens of cold-calls in search of retailers, marketing strateA hundred rambling thoughts gies, and events in which to are banging around my head. sell his product? What has made me do this? What on earth has made me This all may be sounding do this? What possesses a guy negative, but truthfully, the to spend hundreds of unpaid experience has been 99 perhours writing and tweaking a cent positive. A lot of great semi-autobiographical manu- things have transpired. I had a script about growing up gay in stupendous launch at McNally no-wheres-ville? What makes Robinson! Almost a hundred him rise out of bed (more than folks came out for my initial once) at three o’clock in the reading and signing! Directly morning to merely alter what after that, Shauna Foster, a a character is wearing or say- local radio celebrity, picked the ing? What makes him send novel for her book club and the manuscript to 16 publish- gave it extensive on-air coverers across Canada, and over age. Cam Fuller of the city’s the course of a year, read 16 major newspaper, heard about rejection letters? Many of the it, and wrote an enlightening letters were constructive and spread in the entertainment praising, but they were, never- section. Other magazines did theless, rejection letters. What too! Colleen Wilson had me on makes a man plunge a whole her TV show. bunch of money, time, and November/December 2010

But now, as I sit in the plaza’s only bookstore, as I keep watching the passersby, and look around at the garish Christmas tinsel and tacky bows strewn around the mall, I remember some less positive things went down as well. In my lifelong obsession with certain musicians and rock stars, I decided to gift specific ones with a copy of the book. Some constant favourites— Alice Cooper, Jann Arden, and Jane Siberry all received autographed copies. I even handed my muse Joni Mitchell her copy personally when I sat behind her at the ballet last winter. But none of these folks have felt the need to contact me and thank me personally for the gift. Oh well, can’t win ’em all. Just because they’ve been the centre of my universe all these years, certainly doesn’t mean I should be the centre of theirs. My parents reaction to the book didn’t shock me—they hate

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homosexuality, so therefore, they hate the book. Hmmm … and they wonder why I never phone them. A niece I once felt very close to made no bones about how strongly she disliked the novel. We are currently barely speaking. Some more shoppers stop by. I sign and sell several more copies—one for a tourist, one for my ex-banker, one for my co-worker’s daughter and one for an employee of the store (who I think is feeling sorry for me, sitting here all alone). But my mood brightens. Things have been good. More than once, I’ve been stopped on the street by perfect strangers and told I wrote a beautiful story that couldn't be put down. I’ve had support from all parts of Canada, from readers saying that my book rocked their world, including a few wellwishing lines from my literary hero, Stuart McLean. This reminds me of what I really accomplished. Somehow, I published a quirky story about an eccentric, yet lovable, gay musician, and placed copies in almost every major bookstore in Canada. Somehow, I got folks to buy them too. I’ve received messages of praise from coast to coast, telling me my words brought them comfort and joy. MY words! I’ve now been interviewed by too-many-to-count newspapers and radio talkshow hosts, including someone from Canada’s only gay FM radio station (hmmm … who knew Canada even had an exclusively gay radio station?). I’ve also been a pick for numerous book clubs. Pretty cool stuff. Talking about cool, there was the Saskatchewan Book Awards Gala. For one night in my life, I was the rock star, as I went to the Awards Gala in Regina (as a nominee), rubbing shoulders with novelists 38

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“Oh,” he laughs. “Fine. I’ve been through some stuff since Erin and I broke up. Some rough stuff. Booze and substance abuse. Went through detox and rehab. I’m doing well now. Going back to university. I feel a lot better about myself now that I’ve realized … that I’m gay.” He laughs And then there was a wonder- more. We both do. ful patient in Palliative Care at St. Paul’s Hospital. Like they “Wow,” I say, not certain how say—don’t quit your day job. to reply. So I haven’t. I still work in support staff at Saint Paul’s “It’s pretty wild going through a few days a week. She was that kinda stuff in the middle a very accomplished scholar, of nowhere. Especially at such professor, and author. She a young age.” He peers down was also an avid reader. As I at my book. “Now that is an got to know her, I asked her experience,” he says, “that if she would be interested in should be written about.” reading my book. She read it with great enthusiasm—we “That’s what I wrote about.” talked about it afterward—and she passed. It is awe-inspiring “Really?” to me to know that one thing she chose to do in her last “Really,” I answer. hours was take in my writing. Picking up a copy and handing Still … there has to be some- it over to me he asks, “So, are thing more. There has to be a you gonna sign this for me or reason I did this. A really pro- what?” found earth-shattering reason. Again I look around the main Suddenly, I’m on a natural thoroughfare of the mall. The high. I have rich affirmation. guys at the mobility kiosk are It has all been worth it. rushed and frustrated. The baristas at Timothy’s World Coffee appear weary, and the shoppers are looking more frazzled by the minute. Eventually, a pleasant-looking young man approaches my signing table. He is smiley and sincere as he nonchalantly picks up my book. As he peers at the cover he keeps mumbling my name “Wes Funk, Wes Funk,” he says. “Hmmm … are you … Erin Currie’s uncle?” I’ve read and idolized for years. It was inspiring to be sitting at a signing table between Connie Gault and Jean Freeman (of Corner Gas fame). And I was misty-eyed, as I saw an image of the cover of my book blown up onto a twenty-foot screen.

“Yes,” I smile. “I dated your niece,” he continues. “Over a decade ago. In high school.” “Yes. I remember you now. How have you been?” November/December 2010

BOOKS BY MEMBERS The Books by Members feature is a promotional service for individual Guild members. To let others know about your latest book, send a copy and a description along with a brief biographical note about yourself. The book will also be displayed in the SWG library. Reviews and comments obtained from various sources. The Other Side Series The Other Side of War The Other Side of Fear The Other Side of Pain by Marie Donais Calder Borealis Press

Marie Donais Calder has authored a series of YA historical fiction books based on real people, centering around her father, Edmond Joseph Donais. The first five books are set in the city of Leer in northwest Germany between July 1945 and July 1946. Marie’s Dad, Ed, was stationed there as a member of the peacekeeping force. His regiment was the RCEME—Royal Canadian Electrical Mechanical Engineers. Her Dad enlisted as a volunteer in 1942 when it was believed that Hitler was likely to win the Second World War. He left his wife and three little boys behind in Alida, Saskatchewan early in 1945. Upon arriving in enemy territory just two months after the war ended, Ed met a little tenyear-old German boy, Johann. Ed did not see Johann and his family as Nazis. He only saw a little boy and his starving family. They bonded immediately. Although Johann and his family were starving, they shared their meager food portions with Ed, whom they called Eddie, every Sunday evening, and Eddie soon found ways to get food to them. Marie’s Mother went to Germany in 1998 to meet the only remain-

ing member of this family. She told Marie's Mother, “It was by way of Eddie that we were to be fed.” This series of books illustrates the best in humanity. A Canadian soldier in enemy territory assisted a German family, much to the consternation of some of his army buddies. Ed was not bothered by the opinions of others. He needed a family to help fill the loneliness he felt for his wife and three small sons. Life in the army and on the other side of the world from home was almost unbearable for this family man. The Schmidt family relied on Ed for many things. He brought laughter and joy into their dark world. They had not supported Hitler but they “were powerless to stop the madness.” They were caught in a lose-lose situation.

In addition to joy and laughter, Ed brought hope to the family who had suffered horrendously at the hands of their own people as well as at the hands of the Polish. They were made to dig a hole in the ground in their own backyard to live in during the war. Polish officers used their home as a headquarters. The Schmidt family lived in this shelter for almost a year. Terror ruled their lives. Eddie changed that to the best of his abilities during the year he spent in Leer. He did everything he could to help Johann and his family.

November/December 2010

emaining books in the ser The remaining series are set back in Canada when Ed returns from Germany. He is a torn man. He knows the Schmidt family will be vulnerable to abuse once again. His fears are realized as indicated in a letter from Karla, Johann’s sister, in November, 1946. “The Polish are back now. The good times have passed." Eddie is returning to a wife he hasn’t seen in years and to three young sons who don’t remember his. We learn how difficult life was for families after years of separation. They had no phones, no cell phones, no email and no web cams with which to communicate. They only had letters that were being censored. These letters often took months to reach their destination. Ed’s family struggles to rebuild their lives as a family unit. Marie was born after to war, followed by three more children. Marie Donais Calder was raised in Tilston, Manitoba in a home where her imagination flourished. In spite of being born with severe myopia, which has deteriorated to low vision, Marie met the challenges that came her way in her childhood. Marie was 11 years old when her father was killed in a car accident. The family then moved to Redvers, Saskatchewan where she completed high school. Marie graduated from the University of Regina with a B.Ed and taught elementary school for the next thirty years while raising her three daughters. SWG Freelance


Baba’s Babushka: A Magical Ukrainian Christmas by Marion Mutala Your Nickel’s Worth 14.95

It’s Christmas and Natalia misses her baba. When the wind brings her a babushka just like the one Baba used to wear, a magical adventure unfolds and Natalia discovers the traditions of her Ukrainian heritage—the greatest of which is the love of family. Marion Mutala has a master’s degree in education administration and taught for 30 years. With a mad passion for the arts she loves to write, sing, folkdance, play guitar, flower garden, travel, read and play badminton. Marion’s teaching and life experiences help her develop unique stories and songs, and her poetry has appeared in print as well. Baba’s Babushka: A Magical Ukrainian Christmas is her first book. The Forest Horses by Byrna Barclay $21 Coteau Books

napped by a Russian poacher along with her herd, and taken to Leningrad just in time to endure the two-year German siege during World War II. Her captor, Pytor, becomes her husband and they and their horses take part in a daring and dangerous rescue effort that smuggles food and other supplies into Leningrad. On one winter trip their daughter Signe is born into an icy world of strife, deprivation and horses. After the war, the family immigrates to the Canadian prairies to start a new life. Interwoven with this story is the journey of that same Signe, who departs from Regina on midsummer's eve 2005 to make her first journey back to the land where she was born. She’s on a mission to search out her beginnings, her people, and the possible meaning to be found for a life that has come to somehow mirror the harsh conditions of its beginning. Byrna Barclay is a multiple award-winning author of novels, short story collections and a playscript. The Forest Horses was the recipient of the John V. Hicks manuscript award. Byrna received the Saskatchewan Order of Merit in 2005. She lives in Regina.

a little girl. The nine-year-old narrator, Cally Steinbach, brings us into her mother’s garden. It is in mama’s garden that every sense is awakened: the aroma of cinnamon bread, the songs harmonized after supper, the tangy touch of a gooseberry on the tongue and the first cracking of ice in the spring. Prose, poetry, paintings and illustrations present the theme of prairie life in the 1940’s. This is not a children’s story, but a child’s search for beauty and truth amid the shadow of sorrow, fear and longing. Cally’s spirit transforms her dark times to sensitive joy. Connie Kurtenbach is the ninth child of a Saskatchewan farm family. Connie completed secondary school at Sion Academy in Saskatoon. She was Department Head of Music at Austin O’Brien Secondary School in Edmonton, Connie moved to in Toronto where she continued her teaching career while pursuing further studies in English, Music and Clinical Psychotherapy. Connie now lives in Vancouver and spends her time gardening, writing, painting, and counselling Dinosaur Hideout by Judith Silverthorne has been translated into Japanese.

In My Mother's Garden by Connie Kurtenbach $16.95 Diamond River Books

The title in Japanese is loosely translated as being: Adventure of a Boy and Old Man – A Volume of Hideout. On a midsummer’s eve, 1941, Lena, keeper of the forest horses of Gotland, is kid40

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In My Mother's Garden is a mind symphony that holds all the treasures and traumas of

November/December 2010

Inclusion in the Markets & Competitions listing is not an endorsement of any contest, market, event or otherwise. This is only an informational resource. We encourage all readers to thoroughly investigate all contests or markets before submitting their work.

MARKETS & COMPETITIONS Deadline: December 15 The Capilano Review invites contest submissions for their Winter 2011issue Manifestos Now! This issue explores and reassesses the place of the manifesto in our contemporary literary-cultural scene. http:// contest.php

Send submissions directly to Only electronic submissions will be accepted, as attachments in Word for written material, Tiffs or Jpegs for visual images. Rhubarb Magazine is a publication of the Mennonite Literary Society. Details at: Deadline: January 29

Deadline: December 31 Dream Quest One (US) invites international entries for their Poetry & Writing Contest. First prize poetry: US$250; first prize short fiction: US$500. Accepting poems (30 lines max.) and short stories (5 pages max.) on any subject or theme. Entry fees: US$5 (poetry) and US$10 (fiction). http://www.

PRISM international: Creative Writing Program contests. Details at www. Deadline: February 1

Deadline: May 1 The Malahat Review invites emerging poets to enter the Far Horizons Award for Poetry. Eligible poets have yet to publish their poetry in book form (a book of poetry is defined to have a length of 48 pages or more). One prize of $1000 (CAD) is awarded. far_horizons_poetry/info.html

The Malahat Review, Canada’s premier literary maga-

You’ve written your book . . .

ow what?

Deadline: January 15

Benchmark Press is committed to helping you publish your book, while eliminating the many challenges authors often face with self-publishing.

International print journal Versal (Netherlands) seeks poetry, prose, art, and inbetweens for its ninth issue. http://www.wordsinhere. com/index.html

Our extensive list of publishing services include:   

Deadline: January 15 Rhubarb Magazine is publishing a special issue on Mental Illness/Mental Health in June 2011. The issue will be guest edited by Ted Dyck, the Editor of Transition Magazine published by the Saskatchewan Chapter of the Canadian Mental Health Association. They are looking for visual art, fiction, poetry, nonfiction including memoir, by and about and persons with experience of mental health/illness issues.

zine, invites entries for the Long Poem Prize. Two awards of $1,000 CAD each are given. malahat/long_poem_prize/ info.html


Editing and Proofreading Design and Typesetting Printing-on-Demand Online Bookstore Research and Writing Marketing and Distribution

To find out how Benchmark Press can help you publish your book contact: Benchmark Press 3 Floor, 2368 Rae St. Regina, Saskatchewan S4T 2G2 rd

Ph: 306-522-9326 F: 306-586-5177 E: W:

Benchmark Press . . . Your Partner in Publishing November/December 2010

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EVENTS REGINA January 10, 7:00 p.m. Poet Laureate reception at Government House. See page nine for more information. January 17, 8:00 p.m. The Playwrights Reading Series presents Clem Martini, reading from his recent dramatic work, at the Riddell Centre, University of Regina March 4 & 5 Talking Fresh 9 at Luther College. See page 34 for more information. SASKATOON Friday, January 21 and Saturday, January 22 Writing North featuring Patrick Lane, Louise Halfe and Kenneth Brown, at the University of Saskatchewan, Arts Tower, Room 241. See page 11 for more information. McNally Robinson For McNally Robinson events please visit: _ events. WEYBURN December 14, 7:00 p.m. Byrna Barclay, The Forest Horses; and Tracy Hamon, Interruptions in Glass, at the Weyburn Public Library

I'd Like to Make a Donation Yes, I would like to help by donating to: □ SWG Programs □ Writers' Assistance Fund □ Grain Magazine □ Writers/Artist Retreats □ Gary Hyland Endowment Fund □ Pat Armstrong Fund □ SWG Foundation ○ ○ ○ ○

Endowment Fund Facilitated Retreats Judy McCrosky Bursury Pat Armstrong Fund

Make cheque or money order payable to: Saskatchewan Writers' Guild, Box 3986, Regina SK S4P 3R9. You can also donaate via Paypal at: donations&p=guild

Thank you for your donation. A tax receipt will be issued.


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November/December 2010

The Backbone Contributors (to $50) Allan, Sandra Archibald-BarberJesse Biasotto, Linda Bircham, Doris Dow, Jeannette Edlund, Merrill Episkenew, Jo-Ann Fahlman, Jean Givner, Joanne Goertzen, Glenda Grandel, Loaine Guymer, Myrna Hamilton, Sharon harding-russell, gillian Leech, Robert MacFarlane, Sharon McRae, Bronwen Meadows, Sally Miller, Dianne Morrell, Kathleen Muirhead, Laurie Olesen, Joyce Ramshaw, Betty Rice, Bruce Roussin, Thomas St. George, Marie Elyse Tesar, Erica Traquair, Morgan Unrau, John Wagner, Bernadette Wardill, William Wood, Janice Zacharias, Marlace Friends ($50-$99) Calder, Marie Carpenter, David Charrett, Doug Cunningham, Donna Dey, Myrna Dorton, Anne Epp, Joanne Halsband, Ilonka Kostash, Myrna Lorer, Danica Martin, Miriam McLuhan, Jean Monahan, Lynda Parley, Kathleen Quigley, Ellen Richards, David Robertson, Deanna Vail, Deborah Ward, Donald Willow, Rose Witham, Janice Bouvier, Rita

Patton, Anne Guymer, Myrna

Mikolayenko, Linda Ursell, Geoffrey

Supporters ($100-$199) Andrist, Shirley Bannatyne-Cugnet, Jo Bidulka, Anthony Birnie, Howard Brassard, Francois Conacher, Myrtle Dahlem, Madeleine Epp, George Duke, Scott Durant, Margaret Haigh, Jerry Halsband, Ilonka Hertes, David Hogarth, Susan Jordan, Terry Krause, Pat Lauber, Alyson Lay, Jackie Lohans, Alison McArthur, Wenda MacKenzie, Jean Malcolm, David Merle, Charles Moore, Jacqueline NoĂŤl-Maw, Martine Silverthorne, Judith Sorestad, Glen Toews, Terry Stoicheff, Peter Terschuur, Betty Ulrich, Maureen Walter, Murray Wilson, Garrett Warwaruk, Larry Young, Dianne

Retreats Banks, Shelley Bower, Annette Campbell, Sandra Carpenter, David Clark, Hilary Deeley, Anne Galbraith, William Kostash, Myrna LeBox, Annette McCaig, Joann Robson, Verley Sarsfield, Pete Semotuk, Lydia Semotuk, Verna Sorensen, Susan Westmoreland, Cherie Grain Kloppenburg, Cheryl Foundation Adam, Sharon Glaze, David Jeerakathil, Rangi NoĂŤl-Maw, Martine Sorestad, Glen Patricia Armstrong Fund Byers, Shirley Silverthorne, Judith Judy McCrosky Bursury Buhr, Nola Romanow, James McCrosky, Judy

Benefactors ($200-$499) Alford, Edna Boerma, Gloria Byers, Shirley Currie, Robert Goldman, Lyn Klassen, Karen Schmidt, Brenda Lorer, Danica Patrons (over $500) Balogh, Mary Calder, Robert Goldman, Lyn Wilson, Lisa WAF Glaze, Dave MacIntyre, Rod November/December 2010

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freeLance November/December 2010 Volume 39 Number 6

Publication Mail Agreement #40063014 Return Undeliverable Canadian Addresses to: Administration Centre Printing Services 111–2001 Cornwall Street Regina, SK S4P 3X9 Email:


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November/December 2010

Freelance - November-December 2010  

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