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Freelance lance September/October 2010 Volume 39 Number 5

Congratulations to Sandra Birdsell and Glen Sorestad who have been appointed Members to the Order of Canada. See page five for more information.

September/October 2010

SWG Freelance


Features Volume 39 Number 5 September/October 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. 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.

Freelance ISSN 0705-1379 BOARD OF DIRECTORS Jerry Haigh, President, Saskatoon Sharon Adam, Prince Albert Gloria Boerma, Saskatoon Cathy Fenwick, Regina Danica Lorer, Maidstone Scott Miller, Estevan Martine NoĂŤl-Maw, Regina Kelly-Anne Riess, Regina Lisa Wilson, Saskatoon Ex-Officio: Judith Silverthorne Mailing Address: Saskatchewan Writers' Guild Box 3986 Regina, SK S4P 3R9

Phone: (306)757-6310 Toll Free: 1-800-667-6788 Fax: (306)565-8554 Email: or Website:

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Executive Director's Report




Saskatoon Shenanigans


Short Manuscript Award Winners


Fall Conference and AGM


Wascana Writers Group 40th Year


LCP: A Panopoly of Poets


PWAC at MagNet 2010


Saskatchewan Book Awards Events


Spring Volume VII Call for Submissions


Unpacking My Daughter's Library


And Another Thing ...


John V. Hicks Award Winners


City of Regina Writing Award


Five Days/Five Writers/Five Stories


Books by Members


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


President's Report

September/October 2010

PRESIDENT'S REPORT This will be my last report as Guild president and it seems that the time involved has been a bit like a hair-raising roller-coaster ride. It is probably a good thing that I do not have much hair, and what I do have, I keep short. When I took on the task of president I think I went into it with much the same feeling as the wait we had for a ride many years ago when we took our kids to Disneyland. They were keen to get on the ride, but after seeing the downhill plunges of the cars, had their reservations. In the case of the Guild I think my reservations were all around the fact that I had still not fully retired or finished my work in Africa and had more trips with students lined up. Would I be able to fulfill the duties and serve the interests of our members and writers while still engaged in adventures with wildlife? Would I be able to get any of my own writing done? What was coming down the pike? Whenever the ride slowed, as it did for a couple of months this summer, I knew that a rush was on its way. During that two-month period, and from the Guild pointof-view a two-week trip to Haida Gwaii was interesting because I deliberately left my computer at home. I told my Guild contacts that neither my tent nor my kayak would be hooked up to the Internet. There have been two major downhill runs since I got home, and both have been a real rush, in both senses. First has been the accelerated development of The Word On The Street Saskatoon. You have seen reports about this in Ebriefs and more particularly in Regine Haensel’s report in the July/August issue of Freelance. Since she wrote that report the steering committee have met several times, and Colleen McKay, who is our event organizer, has done the appropriate crossing and dotting. September

26 was the big day and there has been lots of interest from many regions, even as far away as Israel. Our next move is to morph from being a Guild program to becoming an independent not-for-profit organization.

selection jury and the Guild. He pointed out that the award was not so much for him personally as the writers and writing community of Saskatchewan as a whole. He also alluded to the fact that awards like this can show young and emergThe other big event has been the ing writers that their work is first selection of the winner of the valued. Cheryl and Henry Kloppenburg Award for Literary Excellence. Our Many thanks to Judith Silanonymous out-of-province jury verthorne and her team for had a tough task to choose from all the hard work in arranging a host of worthy nominees, but the details with the Lieutenant they were unanimous in deciding Governor’s office and ensuring that Guy Vanderhaeghe would be that the Saskatoon arrangethe recipient. In case you missed ments went smoothly. A few the press release you can see days before the event Jeff more information about this, in- Rogstad of CTV asked to intercluding Bob Calder’s remarks and view the award winner on his the words of the jury citation, on lunchtime show. The interview page five of this issue. took place on September 10. The actual award ceremony was held on September 8 at the Saskatoon Club. His Honour the Honourable Dr. Gordon Barnhart, Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan, attended the award ceremony as one of the three honorary patrons of the award and brought greetings. The other two honorary patrons are His Worship the Mayor of Saskatoon, Donald J. Atchison, and Peter MacKinnon, President of the University of Saskatchewan. They were both present at the gathering of invited guests.

There is one more plunge coming on the last down slope of the ride, and that is the fall conference and AGM. The conference committee have done a splendid job with all the details of this event and the associated celebration of our fortieth year. After that it will be time for me to unbuckle and get off the car. My next big event will be continued work with The Word On The Street as we move towards 2011 and the Saskatoon committee develops its own not-for-profit Guy Vanderhaeghe gave a typi- status. cally modest thanks to all those involved in the award, especially Jerry Haigh the Kloppenburgs, the anonymous

HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE The SWG`s annual Holiday Open House will be held in Regina on Wednesday, December 1 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. This year is very special since our entire staff will be here to help celebrate. Come and visit with Sylvia and Mike from Grain, Anne Pennylegion, Colony Coordinator, and Pam from the Saskatoon office. We're located at 2314 11th Avenue, Suite 205 in Regina, on the NW corner of 11th Avenue and Lorne Street. We hope to see you there!

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EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR'S REPORT There are always new initiatives being developed in the Guild office, as well as with related agencies. One of the former is the further development of new information and resources on our Aboriginal programming web page. We’ve made a bit of progress, but have a way to go yet, so please send us your suggestions, news, contacts and resources to include. Of the latter, the Professional Arts Act is on the forefront and more news about what the Guild is doing to assist in the implementation of this Act on behalf of writers will be forthcoming. One of the Guild’s ongoing objectives is to be as professional as possible, as well as maintaining credibility, integrity, and transparency in serving our members. In keeping with these values and in reviewing past practices, our focus is on improving the way our programs and operations are being run. In particular, we are creating a new professional development committee, which in turn will develop a structure and policies around the hiring of established writers for offering Guild programs, such as workshops, presentations and manuscript evaluations for emerging writers anywhere in the province. Through this vetting process a database will become available for hiring SWG members for use to outside organizations and groups as a resource and for Guild specific programs. Criteria will be developed to ensure there are qualified instructors, evaluators and presenters representing a variety of genres and other necessary experience as required for each particular contract position. The committee will then ensure writers are given equal opportunities to be hired. For instance, those who wish to be considered as manuscript evaluators will be vetted for that particular list, identified 4

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by genre or other relevant aspects, with a limit on how many each can do in order to spread the work amongst as many qualified members as possible.

What is imperative for members to do right now is to create your member profile for the Find Saskatchewan Writers web page <http://www.skwriter. com/?s=findskwriters>. This is a promotional tool for you and we’ll be advertising this resource more in the future, so don’t miss out on potential paying work! All SWG members of any level are welcome to be in this directory. Distinctions will be made between emerging to established writers, and for various purposes. For now, those whose names are bolded are writers willing and experienced in doing readings. We will expand the capabilities, designations and searchability for other purposes as we progress with this initiative.

This renewed approach for advancing professionalism and broadening opportunities will require all members wishing to apply to work for the Guild, or to be considered for inclusion in the new databases, to send appropriate and timely résumés. Please note that the Guild office staff will not choose or otherwise unduly influence prospective employers as to the selection of particular or individual writers for hired work. Those listed in the database will have been peer reviewed and stand on their own merit, and enter into agreements on an independent basis. Once our professional development committee is in place, and This includes those programs various criteria, guidelines, etc. and institutions with which set, we will ask members to we may have a co-sponsoring send their résumés to the Guild or reciprocal agreement. For office. instance, we now have a reciprocal discount agreement You may have already noticed between the Guild and the the calls we’ve circulated for University of Regina, Centre for members to sit on task forces Continuing Education (CCE), in assisting with reviewing and Business & Professional De- administering SWG awards, velopment (BPD). However, and investigating feasibilities the BPD staff select their own of reciprocity agreements with instructors based on past em- partners. We’re also interested ployment and on their own in investigating inclusivity and research, which may include other objectives. So far no one searching the SWG Find Sas- has jumped on board, but we katchewan Writers database, hope you will consider particiand on other criteria they’ve pating in these task forces or established independently of on the professional development the SWG. committee. We will work on establishing guidelines and criFor our members, we’ll be teria, application processes, and developing criteria, guidelines, submitting workshop proposals. templates, sample contracts, The call will then go out to our an evaluation system and other members to set up our database. tools to assist with the development of our professional serv- This is your Guild, and we’d ices, our databases and profes- like to provide services and prosional development programs, grams that serve you. and to be compliant with the Professional Arts Act, all of Best regards, which will be unfolded over the Judith Silverthorne next few months. September/October 2010

NEWS Sandra Birdsell and Glen Sorestad Appointed Members to the Order of Canada On June 30, 2010, Sandra Birdsell was appointed to the Order of Canada, "for her contributions as an author, teacher and volunteer who, through her many books, has examined life on the Prairies and explored the immigrant experience in Western Canada." "For his contributions to the promotion of poetry, reading and writing throughout Saskatchewan as a poet and co-founder of Thistledown Press", Glen Sorestad received his appointment to the Order of Canada. Sandra and Glen will be invited to accept their insignia at a ceremony to be held at a later date. Awarded for the first time in 1967, during Canada’s Centennial year, the Order of Canada launched the creation of our country’s own system of honours. For more information on the Canadian Honours System, please consult aspx?id=67&lan=eng.

Guy Vanderhaege Receives the Inaugural Cheryl and Henry Kloppenburg Award The first presentation of the Cheryl and Henry Kloppenburg Award for Literary excellence was made at an elegant ceremony at the Saskatoon Club on September 8. Before the Honorary Patrons, Lieutenant Governor Gordon Barnhart, Saskatoon Mayor Don Atchison, and University of Saskatchewan President Peter MacKinnon, Guy Vanderhaeghe became the inaugural winner of Canada’s newest and most substantial provincial award for a body of work. It can hardly come as a surprise to anyone that Guy was chosen by the jury made up of three eminent, out-of-province writers. He has twice won the Governor General’s

Cheryl and Henry Kloppenburg

Guy Vanderhaeghe

Literary Award for Fiction, and he has been awarded Great Britain’s prestigious Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize, the City of Toronto Prize, and the Canadian Authors Association Award for Drama. His novel The Englishman’s Boy (1996) was shortlisted for both the prestigious Giller Prize and for the even more prestigious IMPAC Dublin Literary Award; and it was made into a respected film, for which Guy wrote the screenplay (and in which he played a persuasive bartender). The Last Crossing (2002) won four Saskatchewan Book Awards, including Book of the Year, and it won the CBC Canada Reads competition for the book that all Canadians should read. In 2008 he was given the prestigious Trudeau Fellowship, given to Canadians who “continue to question society’s views and teach the importance of responsible and engaged citizenship.” September/October 2010

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Guy’s work has gained the respect of scholars, critics, and literary historians as a major contribution to Canadian literature. Tom Gerry, writing in the journal Studies in Canadian Literature, says that “Guy Vanderhaeghe’s writing has been consistently excellent: vividly realized, gripping, profoundly disturbing in its implications.” The Literary Encyclopedia comments: “Guy Vanderhaeghe is one of Canada’s most respected and popular authors, a writer who combines prairie realism, profound engagement with western Canadian history, and a deep sense of connection to European thinkers such as Chekhov and Kierkegaard.” The jurors of the Kloppenburg Award echoed such observations in their citation: “The jury is very pleased to recommend Guy Vanderhaeghe as a highly worthy recipient of the Cheryl and Henry Kloppenburg Award for Literary Excellence. The jury noted that among the nominations for this award, he keeps company with many respected and beloved writers whose writing has been informed by their experience in Saskatchewan. In recommending Guy Vanderhaeghe, the jury recognizes that he has produced a distinguished body of writing that has garnered recognition nationally and internationally. In addition to displaying a mastery of craft, his writing has contributed to a deeper understanding and appreciation not only of Saskatchewan and the culture of the prairies, but of the human condition.”

Words in the Park New this year, Words in the Park was held in Regina's Victoria Park on Wednesdays in July and August over the noon hour. The event was o-sponsored with the Saskatchewan Publishers Group and Downtown Regina. Pictured left are Tracy Hamon, SWG Program Officer; August 25 readers: Marie Powell Mendenhall, Sharon Plumb, and gillian hardingrussell; and Brenda Niskala, Executive Director of the Saskatchewan Publishers Group.




The SWG is holding a facilitated retreat, November 11–14, 2010, at St. Peter’s Abbey in Muenster Saskatchewan. As well as undisturbed writing time, Lynda Monahan, the Writer-In-Residence, will do an introductory talk on an aspect of writing, provide one hour of one-on-one discussion for feedback on your writing and/or answers to your writing-related questions. There will be informal discussion at mealtimes along with the other participants. The facilitated retreat is designed as a time for you to focus on the writing you would like to do and to gain encouragement and motivation by interacting with the Writer-In-Residence and your fellow participants. The cost is $200 per person and includes a private room and all meals, as well as access to the Writer-In-Residence as described above. To apply, applicants (19 years and older) must submit an example of the writing they will be working on at the retreat (no more than ten pages), a paragraph or two describing their writing experience, and a paragraph about why they want to attend the SWG Facilitated Retreat, along with a cheque for the registration fee, and a completed application form: Please contact Anne Pennylegion, Retreat Coordinator, by email at with any questions about the SWG Facilitated Retreat. 6

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September/October 2010

WORKSHOPS Once Upon a Life: A Memoir Workshop by Lorri Neilsen Glenn Tuesday, November 23, 2010, 7:00 p.m., Suite 205-2314 11th Ave. (SWG Office) Fees: $50 for Guild members; $60 for non-members

Getting Lost: A Reading of Lost Gospels by Lorri Neilsen Glenn Wednesday, November 24, 2010, 7:00 p.m., RPL Main Branch

Our stories are all we have. But what life stories are worth telling? And how do we start? In this workshop, we’ll find ways into writing memoir that will surprise, comfort, shock, amuse and move us—and in doing so, we’ll create unforgettable writing. Using micro-moments that have shaped us, we’ll begin to craft the stories we want to tell. Lorri Neilsen Glenn is the author and editor of twelve books of non-fiction and poetry. Winner of awards from The Malahat Review, Grain, Prairie Fire, among other journals, she is the former Poet Laureate of Halifax. She has recently edited an anthology about mothers of the 1950s; a memoir about loss will be published next year. Her latest book, Lost Gospels, was published by Brick in 2010. Registrations for the workshop are on a first-come, first-served basis. You can pay by PayPal on the website, send your cheque or money order to Box 3986, Regina SK, S4P 3R9 or courier/drop-off payment at #205—2314 11th Avenue, Regina SK S4P 0K1. Registrations must be received in the office by 4:30 p.m. on Friday November 19, 2010. Full refunds are available prior to the deadline. After this deadline no refunds will be given. To request a cancellation or make a change, please e-mail or call 306-791-7740.

Welcome New Members (September 2010) Christine Berriman, Regina Michael Chouinard, Saskatoon Alison DuBois, Saskatoon Carol Fisher, Swift Current Gloria Germain, Victoria, BC Jean Hill, Saskatoon

Sharon Katzman, Saskatoon George Khng, Saskatoon Elaine McArthur, Regina John Murray, Regina K.B. Sterling, Regina Andrea Tait, Indian Head

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Saskatoon Shenanigans by Pam Bustin Hey all. I usually fill this space with a whirlwind of words about all the happenings up here in ‘Toon town. I thought I’d do the same this issue— what with September being such a full month: Guy Vanderhaeghe being awarded the first ever Kloppenburg Award for Literary Excellence; the second session of our Weaving Words program starting up, the Guild’s involvement in Culture Days and, of course, the amazing and much anticipated preview event for The Word On The Street Festival on September 26, not to mention Alice Kuipers starting her new job as Writer-InResidence at the Library, the Writers for Peace event … and so on …. We have a lot going on in Saskatoon. But on September 15 I attended an event that stilled the whirlwind for me. There was a book launch at the Saskatchewan Indian Institute of Technologies. The book is called piko kîkway ênakacihtât: kêkêk otâcimowina ê-nêhiyawastêki (There’s Nothing She Can’t Do: The Reminiscences of Cecilia Masuskapoe). It was edited by M. C. Wolfart and Freda Ahenakew, and the most wonderful and astounding thing about it is—it is written, and published, entirely in Cree. As one of the speakers, Arok Wolvengray, said, “Imagine a time when we can walk into a bookstore and go to the Cree section and all the books will be written in Cree.” Along with the launching of the book, the event was a celebration and introduction 8

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of the newly formed Cree Literacy Network whose focus is: “… to promote Cree language literacy, writing and publishing using standard Roman Orthography. It is based on a small but determined circle of dedicated speakers, writers, s t u d e n ts, teachers and l i n g u i s ts, whose colThe Cree Literacy Network book table lective commitment to the Cree language spans decades in the Arden Ogg from the Network prairie provinces of Manitoba, spoke about why they are striving for standardization of Saskatchewan and Alberta. spellings and the use of RoBuilding on the substantial liv- man Orthography—they want ing legacy created by Honour- all Cree people to be able to ary Founders, Dr. Freda Ahen- read each book. She took us akew, and Dr. Jean Okimâsis, back to a time before English we hope to build strong con- was standardized—how we nections throughout the Cree- look at those texts now and speaking communities of the have to work out what the prairies, and offer meaningful writers really meant. Standsupport to those who share ardization will help more peoour passion for not just the ple understand stories from survival, but the revival and others. Pronunciations may flourishing of the language in still differ but the words will mean the same thing to all spoken and written form.” readers. The emcee for the launch was Barry L. Ahenakew, who made Now, here’s the really imus all feel welcome with jokes, portant bit. The thing that stories and songs. He spoke stopped the whirlwind for me. a lot about the meaning of Cree names and Cree place It was two things, actually. names, told us some history, The first is that Freda Ahenand talked about learning the akew was a bit delayed in arstories—the sacred stories, riving at the event. Her daughand the historical stories from ter, Dolores Sand, shared with the old people—how these us that her mother was 92 and stories were, and are, passed that her kidneys are failing but on verbally from person to she passionately wanted to be person and how they are just at the event and celebrate the launch of the book with her beginning to be written.

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good friend and old berry-picking partner, Cecilia (also 92). Freda was on her way in a special van and she would be in a wheelchair. As I mentioned earlier, Barry told us jokes and sang us songs and shared some history while we waited. When Freda arrived we all stood as she was rolled up to the front to a seat beside Cecilia. My eyes teared up. Then came the real kicker. There was a table set up at the front for the women to sign copies of the book. As these two old friends sat there, holding the book they created together, signing copies and beaming with pride at each other and all the people snapping pictures of them, Barry sang a healing song, a Bear Lodge song. He started to drum and … I started to weep. It was just so beautiful to see this book born.

Cecilia Masuskapoe and Freda Ahenakew

It reminded me why we are all here. To celebrate the language. To tell our stories. And to share them with each other. Go write something—Pam




Congratulataions to the winners of the 2010 Short Manuscript Awards! Poetry

1st Place: “Prairie Quartet in Four Movements”—Andréa Ledding 2nd Place: “Sun, Moon, Stars”—Barbara Kahan 3rd Place: “Grotto” —Carla Richards Honourable Mention: “Building Bridges”—Helen Herr


1st Place: “September” —Andréa Ledding 2nd Place: “Ghost in the Park”—Regine Hansel 3rd Place: “Now That You’re Four”—Eileen Reese Honourable Mention: “ Merrilyss” —June Mitchell

Non Fiction

1st Place: “Thunder on the Prairies: The North-West Troubles of 1885”—Keith Foster 2nd Place: “Economy of Silence: A Brother’s Journal”—Bruce Rice 3rd Place: “Doves”—Linda Biasotto Honourable Mention: “The Adam Effect”—Lisa Wilson


1st Place: “Just a Girl”—Lisa Wilson 2nd Place: “Thrilled”—Peggy Worrell 3rd Place: “Being George”— Andréa Ledding Honourable Mention: “The Web”—Madelon Smid

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SWG 2010 Fall Conference and AGM Jet Streams: The Winds of Change October 15–17 Parktown Hotel, 924 Spadina Cres. E., Saskatoon SK (Toll free: 1-800-667-3999;

Friday Afternoon

3:45–4:45 p.m. Concurrent Sessions

12:00–1:00 p.m. Registration begins; the book table opens.

Poetry Currents (Louise Halfe and Don McKay)

12:45 p.m. Opening Ceremony and Prayer (Elder Michael Maurice) 1:00–2:15 p.m. Concurrent Sessions Riding the Wind: Creative Process (Louise Halfe, Myrna Kostash and Kenneth T. Williams) How do we do what we do? We kick off the conference with three award-winning writers exploring and sharing their creative process—the development, evolution and/ or change over the years or from project to project. Come ride the wave of inspiration! OR YA in a Shifting World (Arthur Slade and Alison Lohans) Looking for some insight into what’s going on in the world of Young Adult fiction? Award-winning writers Arthur Slade and Alison Lohans discuss their experiences and trends/changes they’ve noticed in YA writing over the years. Be that inner child—come shift in your chair and join the conversation about YA. 2:30–3:30 p.m. Concurrent Sessions Revolutions in Non-Fiction (David Carpenter and Myrna Kostash) Shake it up, dig deep, tell the truth. Make ‘em laugh or make ‘em cry—just don’t poke ‘em in the eye. David Carpenter and Myrna Kostash share their adventures about the windy world of Non-Fiction. How is the form changing? What are the new challenges and opportunities? Come on out and gather some wisdom on spinning your own stories. 10

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"Wind: A poetic image of the animating spirit whose effects can be seen and heard but who remains invisible. Wind, air and breath are closely allied in mystic symbolism, and the idea of the wind as cosmic animator, organizer or support was widespread" (From Jack Tresidder's Dictionary of Symbols). Join internationally acclaimed poets Don McKay and Louise Halfe as they trace evolutions in poetry within the context of their own poetic work, and help us navigate the world with words. OR The Perfect Pitch (Amy Jo Ehman and James Romanow) Get out the notebooks, folks—this one is about SALES! Two of our most popular food and wine columnists give us the skinny on pitching and selling your articles to magazines, journals, or papers. 5:00–6:00 p.m. Concurrent Sessions Writers Groups Session Whether you are looking to find out just what a writers group is, seeking like minded writers to join up with or are already firmly ensconced in a group and feel like sharing your successes and/ or bemoaning some missteps—this is the Dinner party for you! Facilitated by Tracy Hamon, it promises to be a fun, informative session and a great place to meet fellow scribblers. Note: pre-registration is required by 4:30 p.m. on Friday, October 8, 2010. The meal will be lasagna, salad, and dessert. Please let us know on your registration form if you have dietary restrictions. OR

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Aboriginal Members Focus Group (Facilitated by Carol Vandale from the Aboriginal Literacy Network) As an inclusive Guild we are always seeking input on what sort of programming our members are looking for—and we are especially interested in developing more programs that welcome and include our Aboriginal members. Come out and let us know what sort of programs, events, and adventures you’d like to see the Guild support. Let’s get the conversation rolling. 6:30–7:30 p.m. tion

Social—Member Recep-

A reception kicks off the evening. Light refreshments and snacks will be offered; there will also be a cash bar. A great place for members old and new to mix and mingle. 7:30–9:00 p.m. Caroline Heath Memorial Lecture (Don McKay) Renowned poet Don McKay once said, “Poetry—any poetry—is always political and subversive because it uses language, our foremost technological tool, against its powers of mastery and control. In poetry, language discovers its eros. In poetry, language is always a singer as well as a thinker, a lover as well as an engineer. Language delights in its own being as though it were an otter or a raven and not just the vice president in charge of making sense.” Come and hear what Don has to say in this year’s Caroline Heath Lecture. 9:00–11:00 p.m. Post-Lecture Reception and Open Mic

ask questions, and provide suggestions on the direction of the Guild. We’re all in this together. 10:45–11:45 p.m. Concurrent Sessions Creative Freefall: Creating Characters Who Drive Plot (Kenneth T. Williams) We all know that great stories are driven by OUTSTANDING characters. Award-winning playwright Kenneth T. Williams will delight and dazzle you with this one-hour workshop that will help you hone your skills in creating dynamic characters that will grab your audience by the scruff of the neck, steering the action of your play, short story or novel. Drive in and get to work! OR Changes in Publishing (Wes Funk, Geoffrey Ursell and Karon Schmon) Are you ready to publish? Need to find out how it all works these days? Join self-published author Wes Funk; Geoffrey Ursell from Coteau Books; and Karon Schmon from Gabriel Dumont Institute publishing as they share their experiences, offer some tips and reveal some trends in the ever changing world of publishing. 12:00–1:15 p.m. Luncheon: Featuring Winners of the Short MS Awards Competition Join us as we celebrate the winners of the Short Manuscript Awards. 1:30–2:30 p.m. Concurrent Sessions Writing and the Internet Book (Arthur Slade and Peter Stoicheff)

Mix and mingle with us again at this reception (cash bar). Bring a poem, a word, a line, a small story, your mother’s uncle! Titillate and tingle with some words of your own and others. Infamous host Gerry Hill will help you screw up your courage and share some of your work with us, or just hang out, listen and enjoy.

This one is a two-pronged humdinger of a session. Peter Stoicheff will give us a run-down on the evolution of books from print to Internet book and the future print world for writers. Arthur Slade will focus on how the Internet has changed the way he promotes his work and any trends and changes he’s noticed out there on the cyber expressway. Buckle up as we trek through the past and into the future.



9:00–10:30 a.m. (Members Only)

Hot Issues Session

This member-only session provides the opportunity to have a frank and respectful discussion with the Board. This is the time to let your voice be heard—raise issues,

The Sensual Seen Mini-Workshop (Mary Balogh) Tired of keeping your characters clothed? Can they kiss but never make out? Join awardwinning romance writer Mary Balogh for a crash course on writing the erotic scene.

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2:45–3:45 p.m. Readings by Myrna Kostash and Don McKay There’s nothing like hearing an author’s work live and in person. Join us for a little she said he said with two fascinating famous feisty writers.

ACCOMMODATION To book a room at the Park Town Hotel (924 Spadina Cres E.), email or call (306) 244-5564. PARKING FOR HOTEL GUESTS

4:00–5:00 p.m. The SWG Founders’ Celebration (Jean Freeman, Ken Mitchell and Geoffrey Ursell—hosted by Robert Currie)

Parking is free and, for those staying at the hotel, available in the hotel parkade. More details available at registration.

Has it REALLY been forty years? Bring your own ghosts and join SWG founders in celebrating what the Guild has done for us all and continues to offer to the writers of Saskatchewan. We’ll laugh, we’ll cry, and we’ll eat some cake!

Travel Subsidy (Available to Those Who Attend the Annual General Meeting)

5:30–7:30 p.m. John V. Hicks Dinner Join us to break bread and hear the winners of the 2010 John V. Hicks Long Manuscript Award read from the award-winning manuscripts after being presented with their prizes. Drinks at 5:30 p.m.; dinner at 6:00 p.m. 8:00–11:00 p.m. The SWG 40th Anniversary Gala—Dancing with jazz band Jump Me Martha

Sunday 9:00–12:00 p.m. AGM Make your voice heard—again! Come out to the Annual General Meeting: elect your new Board, and provide feedback. It’s your organization. Keep it strong! Closing Ceremony and Prayer (Elder Michael Maurice)

Members in good standing who live more than 100 kilometres from Saskatoon may apply for a travel subsidy of 20 cents per kilometre to help defray their costs. To qualify for this subsidy, members must attend the Annual General Meeting on Sunday. BOOK TABLE The book table is open the following hours: Friday: 12:30–5:00 p.m.; 6:45–10:00 p.m.; Saturday: 8:30 a.m.–12:00 p.m.; 1:15–5:15 p.m; Sunday: 8:30–10:30 a.m. Members and guests of the conference can leave up to five copies of a title at any one time. Please make sure the price is clearly marked on the book (rounded up to the nearest dollar). It is the author's responsibility to fill in the log-in sheet (author's name and book info and the number of books per title). Please pick up your unsold books by 10:30 a.m. Sunday morning (during the break at the AGM). After the conference, we’ll send you a cheque for the amount owing after your sales (less 10% for administrative costs).

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED We need volunteers for the registration table and for general duties. If you would like to donate a little time, please get in touch with Tracy Hamon (306-791-7743 or programs@ or Pam Bustin (306-955-5513 or or indicate your interest on your registration form. We regret that we are unable to provide free admission to volunteers.


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BILLETS AND CARPOOLING If you would like to offer a billet or a ride from out of town (or if you would prefer a billet or a ride), please fill in the appropriate spot on the registration form. Bios of the presenters will be available on our website at

September/October 2010

Registration Form for the SWG Fall Conference and AGM Jet Streams: The Winds of Change October 15 – 17, 2010 Parktown Hotel, 924 Spadina Crescent, E., Saskatoon; Name: __________________________________________________

Address: _________________________________________________

Town/City: _____________________________ Postal Code: ______________

Phone (home): _______________________

Phone (business): ___________________ Fax: _________________________ Email: _________________________________________ To help us plan for adequate seating and refreshments, please mark all events you will attend, even if there is no charge or if you are taking advantage of the package price Member Non-Member

Friday, October 15 12:45 1:00

2:30 3:45


6:30 7:30 9:15

Opening Ceremony and Prayer Concurrent Sessions (please circle your choice) Riding the Wind: Creative Process YA in a Shifting World Revolutions in Non-Fiction Concurrent Sessions (please circle your choice) Poetry Currents The Perfect Pitch Concurrent Sessions (please circle your choice) Writers Groups (includes meal) Aboriginal Members Focus Group Social—Member Reception Caroline Heath Memorial Lecture (Don McKay) Post-Lecture Reception and Open Mic

Saturday, October 16 9:00 9:45

12:00 1:30

2:45 4:00 5:30 8:00

Hot Issues Session (members only) Concurrent Sessions (please circle your choice) Creating Characters Who Drive Plot Changes in Publishing Short Manuscript Awards Luncheon Concurrent Sessions (please circle your choice) Writing and the Internet Book The Sensual Seen Mini Workshop Readings by Myrna Kostash and Don McKay SWG Founders Celebration John V. Hicks Awards Dinner 40th Anniversary Gala

Sunday, October 17

9:00 AGM Closing Ceremony and Prayer

______ Free

______ Free









______ ______ ______ ______ ______

$30 Free $10 $15 Free

______ ______ ______ ______ ______

$35 Free $15 $20 Free



Other Information I am interested in being a volunteer at the Fall Conference. I am a new member. I am attending an SWG conference for the first time. I would like to offer a billet/be billetted (circle as appropriate).


______ $20

______ $25

______ $25

______ $30





______ ______ ______ ______

$10 $15 $40 $10

______ ______ ______ ______

$15 $20 $45 $15 or 2 for $25





Total fees (if paid by individual sessions) ______ $ Package Fee for all events ______ $250 Early Bird Package Fee for all events (before September 15) ______ $200

______ $ ______ $310 ______ $255

Total Amount Enclosed for Conference: SWG Membership I would like to join/renew my membership (Regular Member $75; Full-Time Student or Senior—60 or over—$55). Total Amount Enclosed for Membership:



Donation I would like to donate to the SWG; total donation enclosed:


Total Amount Enclosed:


September/October 2010

I would like to offer a ride/catch a ride (check and provide travel times).

Please make your cheque or money order payable to the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild. Send to one of the two following addresses. Box 3986; Regina, SK S4P 3R9 or courier/drop off at #205–2314 11th Ave Regina, SK S4P 0K1

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Happy Anniversary, Wascana Writers Group

During the seventies, authors Veste Pickle, Tom White, Pat Krause, Allan Shearer, Dr. Martin Bergbusch (Wascana Review), Angelina Campell (Saskatchewan Poetry Society), Grace Lane, CBC’s Murby Adriana Marella Wolfe ray Dobbin (Information Radio), Dr. John Archer, H. B. Mann, Ruth WarThe Wascana Writers Group (1971- ick (Leader Post), Hugh Hood, Mick 2011) flourishes and nourishes its Burrs, Allan Turner (Saskatchewan readers with charismatic voices from Archives), Alice Parent (Regina past and present. Its roots grew one frosty night in January 1971, when Kay Sadlemyer, a CBC (CBK Radio) producer and friend of Saskatchewan writers set up a studio, sponsored by the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild. Fifty writers filled the seats from Regina and surrounding area. Ken Mitchell, then Chairman of the Guild, and Vera Simenson, Chair of the Prince Albert Writers Group, were the speakers for this event to help organize a local writers’ organization. Thus the Regina Writers Group was born.

Book launches were well attended by City of Regina councillors, Saskatchewan Writers' Guild members and staff. Family and friends shared their musical stylings to add a flare to the readings. From Tom White, the president’s position changed hands to Anne Larson, Joan Olson and Jeanne Alexander.

Tom White, the first president of the group, was an architect and conservationist. Members came from all backgrounds and age groups and they wrote in every genre (poetry, prose, short stories, fiction, nonfiction, playwriting, memoires, historical works, and personal essays). Chiara Wolfe, Adriana Marella-Wolfe, Fred Zick, James Hohne, At one of the group's first meetings, Jeanne Alexander; Keith Foster, Shirley Thurm, Murray Logan, Dr. Harry Dillow, Editor of the Was- Terry Jordon (RPL Writer-in-Residence) cana Review, spoke about the high standard required for submissions Toastmistress Club), and Regina Recently group members read their for publications, which still stands. Public Library Writers-In-Residence works on CJTR 91.3 FM on Toast Alison Lohans and Terry Jordan, and Coffee with Jeanne Alexander In September 1971, it was decided shared their knowledge to help and on Access Communications' to change the name of the group. By improve the groups' writing skills. Writing in Saskatchewan and Talk of November the group became known the Town, also with Jeanne. Readas the Wascana Writers Group. The groups' publications over the ings have also taken place at senior years include: Varieties (1978), citizen centres in Regina and AvonOne of the earlier guest speakers, dedicated to the City of Regina lea. Creative writing workshops C. B. Koester (History Department, for its 75th anniversary; Varieties were held at the Canadian Mental University of Saskatchewan, Regina II (1981); Short Grass (1985); Health Association. Campus) lectured on the methodol- Wide Horizons (1989); Roots to ogy of research—stressing the im- Wings (1995); Tapestry of Words At the monthly meetings the Wasportance of thorough research before (1998); Portals (2001), for the 30th cana Writers Group’s purpose was, doing any form of writing. Other Anniversary—and in memory of and still is, to give constructive critiprominent guests over the years members Violet Copeland, Thelma cism to improve writing and public include Dr. Robert Kroetsch, Irving Foster, Al Markuson, Margaret speaking skills. Layton, and Dr. John Chamberlain. Moller, Dorothy O’Keefe and A. O. (Al) Smith; Prairie Bounty (2005) Over the years, the membership The group gave workshops including in memory of Mildred Rose, Anne fees have grown from from $1 “The Role of the Writer in Educa- Larson, and John Yu; Between the to$10. New members are welcome! tional Broadcasts” to gain knowledge Leaves (2009), for Myrtle Moore in preparing scripts for radio and and in memory of Joan McGonigal; Thanks to everyone involved for television, (by Ann Hardcastle of and an untitled 40th anniversary their support over the years, and the Drama Department, University edition with companion pieces from Happy 40th Anniversary, Wascana of Saskatchewan, Regina Campus). the Prairie Artists Guild. Writers Group!


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September/October 2010

LCP—A Panoply of Poets

The League lobbies, along with other organizations representing Canadian writers, to ensure that proposed legislation to reform Canadian copyright law will by Lynda Monahan respect our rights, including the As the newly elected Saskatch- right to be fairly remunerated ewan representative on the for our work. national council for the League of Canadian Poets, I thought I Our members organize a variety would take this opportunity to of readings and poetry-related tell you a bit about the League events across the country during National Poetry Month in and its many activities. April of every year. This year The League of Canadian Poets the LCP celebrated the eleventh has garnered a long list of ac- anniversary of National Poetry complishments in its forty-four Month in Canada. Our theme year history, all in the name of was Poetry Planet, and artists promoting Canadian poets and and National Poetry Month parpoetry. These many achieve- ticipants were encouraged to ments include the launch of elaborate on themes of poetry one of the most comprehensive related to our planet, land, culwebsites for poetry in Canada. ture, nature and how we define Check it out at Canada. League Council memAs well, the League launched bers host (W)rites of Spring, a website fundraisers, such as public for youth and two listserves for readings and literary salons, in students and teachers. Plans the province they represent, now in the works include a to help improve awareness of fully bilingual young poets web- the League and to raise funds site, as well as expanding the to support the League’s many websites to make the most of activities. internet potential for marketing. Through the League’s readings The League presents two annual programs, poets are able to profull-length poetry book awards mote their work both locally and each year, The Pat Lowther nationally. The LCP administers and the Gerald Lampert Memo- four readings programs, three rial Awards. The Pat Lowther youth workshops and over four Award is given for a book of hundred readings throughout poetry by a Canadian woman the fiscal year. The readings are published in the preceding year administered at the LCP office and is in memory of the late and all the funding goes directly Pat Lowther, whose career was to the artists. cut short by her untimely death in 1975. The Gerald Lampert For a number of years the SWG Award is given for best first participated in the League's book of poetry by a Canadian Poets in the Schools program. author published in the preceding year. This award is offered The League established Poetry in memory of the late Gerald Spoken Here, a network of pubLampert, an arts administrator lishers, bookstores, libraries and who organized authors tours reading venues from across the and took particular interest in country. The League is involved the work of new writers. The in many other activities, such 2010 winners of these awards, as promoting poetry at national respectively, were Karen Solie and international book fairs and for Pigeon and James Langer festivals. for Gun Dogs. The League also presents the Poetic Licence Membership in the League of Contest for Youth which is open Canadian Poets offers many to young poets from grades benefits, including a year-long subscription to the League’s seven to twelve. monthly electronic newsletter, September/October 2010

participation in the reading programs, participation in National Poetry Month readings and events, and promotion of your readings through the Poetry Spoken Here calendar. There is also a brand new benefits package available for members. All of this and so much more! One of the best benefits, for me, is belonging to a nationwide community of poets. The League offers four categories of membership to all Canadian citizens and landed immigrants. Applications for both full and associate membership are assessed by a membership committee elected from and by the membership. To apply for membership or to learn more about the League of Canadian Poets visit or contact me, Lynda Monahan at P.S. The League of Canadian Poets is especially pleased that one of its Life Members, Glen Sorestad, was a recent recipient of the Order of Canada. (Congratulations, Glen!)

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 (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 25-word ad free of charge each year).

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PWAC at MagNet 2010: Tips for Rights and Writing in the Changing Marketplace by Marie Powell Mendenhall We live in challenging times.

Magazines Canada, the Canadian Association of Magazine Editors (CSME), the Canadian Business Press, and the Circulation Management Association of Canada (CMC). It provides each organization the chance to offer more workshops and events than they could alone. Workshop Nuggets Last year’s workshops were useful and interesting, and this year’s PWAC-MagNet offerings improved on the past. I attended workshops on white paper writing, business-to-business tips and techniques, travel writing, and making the transition from magazine writing to book authorship.

As writers, we’re told to brand and position ourselves in the marketplace. Readers can choose electronic books and digital publications, moving away from print formats. The Internet contains more information than we can get through in one lifetime—but it’s up to us to judge what’s accurate and PWAC also organized a full-afternoon session on social media useful. that covered the basics of using When the buzz and confusion Twitter, Flickr, You Tube, Wordof our information-laden world press or Blogger, and LinkedIn seems deafening, professional as part of an overall business associations help bridge the strategy. gaps. That’s part of the value of memberships in such organiza- “It’s all about sharing,” said tions as the Saskatchewan Writ- social media guru Mark Evans of ers' Guild (SWG), and the Pro- ME Consulting, as he explained fessional Writers Association of the basics of building converCanada (PWAC). Associations sations through social media. help us protect our writer’s These conversations are not inrights and manage our writing, tended to make money as much as we take full advantage of the as to develop relationships and new methods and technologies position a writer as someone with insight into a given topic available to us. or area. “Google loves blogs. Since I began attending the It’s all about fresh content and annual PWAC conference and google juice.” AGM four years ago, I’ve found the value of my membership Agent and author Katharine has increased. So has my sense Sands of the Sarah Jane Freyof being part of a national mann Literary Agency quipped professional writing environ- about simple “querial killers,” ment, my understanding of the such as calling a manuscript marketplace, and my comfort a “book” when it should be a level with new technologies. My “submission.” She gave pointbusiness has also expanded be- ers to help writers develop yond magazine article writing, “marketing moxie” that builds which has become a less lucra- on strengths and expertise. tive industry over the past few years, to include corporate and For example, there’s no standard template for book proposals, business-to-business writing. she said. Writers must be preFor the past two years, PWAC’s pared to argue the case for their conference has taken place dur- book, make the overview “pop,” ing Toronto’s MagNet event in and really work to answer the June. MagNet is the magazine question, “Why does the world industry conference formed need this book?” Whatever the through a partnership of several answer, it has to “stand out in organizations, including PWAC, the noise of the Internet.” 16

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September/October 2010

Would-be book authors must consider “scope” and “texture,” Sands said. In a one-page query, the writer needs to nail the subject, build the voice, and make the prospective agent or publisher “see the book” while bringing in sales and marketing tips. Writers must be prepared to “wow” the publisher with the query. Long-time PWACer and six-figure freelancer Dorothea Helms (a.k.a. The Writing Fairy) gave pointers in making clients comfortable, and making a writing business reasonable, interesting, and fun. Her tips and tools included a sample job chart, for instance, to help track assignments and invoices. Mastering the format of the white paper helps keep PWACer Gordon Graham in the six-figure freelancer status. His workshop offered several tips on writing these sponsored persuasive essays, using facts and logic to promote a service, methodology or viewpoint. “Think like a lawyer,” he suggested, collecting evidence, providing names, dates, and numbers, and quoting experts to develop iron-clad logic and build a case throughout the white paper. Several workshops stressed the importance of having and updating a business plan, and developing a writer’s website. Building a strong business foundation and maintaining a professional attitude will help writers succeed in the changing marketplace. Best Practices I also attended the best practice panel to hear project consultant Garry Neil present the proposed best practice guide. It was developed through facilitated conversations between PWAC, the Canadian Society of Magazine Editors, and Magazines Canada, as a result of the 2009 report “Respect and Remuneration: Attitudes about Editorial Working Conditions in the Canadian Magazine Industry.”

Through round-table meetings and a guided interview process, Neil gathered material from writers, editors, and publishers to draft and develop the proposed guide. Editors tended to complain about chronic lateness, poor internet research skills, and a tendency to offer reprints rather than original work, he said. For best practice guidelines, editors suggest writers are obligated to provide focused pitches, deliver promised articles on time, consult on changes or delays, submit accurate and original work, and be available during the editing process. Writers complain about loss of editors, rights grabs, liability requirements, and rates. Their best practice guide suggests editors are obligated to provide written assignments confirming scope, research, focus, style, deadlines and payments; respect confidentiality of sources; advise writers on changes and editing required; and ensure prompt processing and payments.

PWACer Craig Silverman (now PWAC vice-president) helped liven up the debate during the subsequent panel. Silverman suggested a new model for online magazines, by tracking readers, and basing payment on use and popularity. He also called current contracts including moral rights and similar rights-grabs “mind-boggling,” and suggested writers have a responsibility to negotiate.

As delegates, we were required to attend the AGM, where we heard the results of a national membership survey. PWAC is growing: about 45 percent of PWAC members have held membership for less than five years. PWAC members tend to appreciate the national scope of the organization, the local chapter events and professional development, and the various jobs and opportunities that come to each of us through “It starts with an attitude of our business listing on PWAC’s respect and understanding, and directory, to a certain extent partnership,” he added. Often the best AGM events are the auxiliary ones. Travel writing Socializing and Special Events has been an informal session Several after-hours events over the past two years. Last planned by the hosting chap- year, Toronto PWAC member ter, PWAC-Toronto, gave us time Mariellen Ward set up an imto socialize and share business promptu session that went over tips more informally. well, and this year she teamed up with Veronica Leonard to set

The best practice guide would also obligate publishers to “assume complete liability for what is published,” assist writers in defending claims, treat writers’ fees as professional services, be specific about electronic rights, and give writers the opportunity to accept or reject offers. Neil also suggested writers should always try to negotiate, professionally and respectfully. The magazine has rights in collection to make material widely available in its formats, print and/or electronic, but other rights belong to the writer unless otherwise assigned in writing. Moral rights can’t be assigned, only waived, he added. “I don’t understand why a magazine would want to have their writers waive their moral rights,” he said. Changing an article in ways that would be prejudicial to the honor and reputation of the author, he added, would “probably be as detrimental to the magazine.”

Toronto Reference Library For the first time, I was able to share AGM activities with two other members from Saskatchewan, Kelly-Anne Riess and Sharon Elliott. In post conference reports, Elliott noted the “casual and friendly” PWAC attitude. Riess added she gained “tangible nuggets” of useful information for her freelancing, and she appreciated PWAC’s inclusiveness. I also received the regional volunteer award, an unexpected honor (and a pleasant surprise). September/October 2010

up another one. Travel blogger Janice Waugh (aka Solo Traveler) joined us to discuss the possibilities of tourism boards and other funding sources for serious social media specialists, and a representative from Up! magazine presented their unique needs for writers with local knowledge and expertise. PWAC member Dawn Boshcoff arranged a special Toronto reference library tour for PWACers. It was easy to imagine spending long hours researching in the SWG Freelance


relative luxury of its interior landscape, housing art, international magazines that can be digitized on memory sticks, rare and fragile books, and a floor of business and technology resources. Among its special collections, the Arthur Conan Doyle reading room seems the most topical, especially with the resurgence of Sherlock Holmes in various genres. An urban walking tour seems to have become an annual PWAC conference event. This year’s eco-tour was once again ably hosted by environmental journalist Craig Saunders, and I joined a group of PWACers touring Toronto’s urban agriculture. We walked through various food-growing plots on city streets as well as more secluded areas. “Foodie” authors Sarah Elton (Locavore) and Lorraine Johnson (City Farmer: Adventures in Urban Food Growing) led the way, explaining the philosophy and significance

of various urban agricultural experiences as we walked. T h e to u r e n d e d with lunch at the Drake Hotel, where we learned about the Drake’s efforts at urban garA Toronto urban garden dening in e l eva t e d beds. We also heard about the This year’s bus tour helped us success of its chef’s suppers, explore Ontario’s Prince Edward where celebrity chefs explain County, to learn about their their special style and philoso- unique growing and processing phies while providing themed methods for cheese-making, as meals for restaurant guests. well as for brewing wines. After the conference, I joined about a dozen PWAC members from across Canada for the traditional post-conference tour.

Next year, PWAC will journey away from MagNet to host a separate conference and AGM in Montreal.

Eighteenth Annual Saskatchewan Book Awards Shortlist Press Conference (announcing the 2010 shortlisted authors across the 14 award categories) Thursday, October 14, 1:30 p.m. Regina – Campion College, University of Regina Saskatoon – Saskatoon Public Library

Shortlist Readings (authors will be announced after the press conference on October 14) Regina, George Bothwell – November 3, 7:00 p.m. St. Denis – date and location TBA Weyburn – November 10, 7:00 p.m., location TBA Regina, Government House –November 17, 7:30 p.m. (To be invited please e-mail Saskatoon Brunch – Sunday, November 21, 11:30 a.m., Bessborough Hotel

Awards Gala November 27, 5:00 p.m. at the Conexus Art Centre in Regina For more information visit:; (306) 569-1585 ; email: info@


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September/October 2010

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. Guidelines: • Submissions must be previously unpublished in any format. • The maximum length for fiction and non-fiction is 3,000 words and for poetry is six poems totalling no more than 12 manuscript pages. Excerpts from longer prose and poetry works will be considered. • In a covering letter, include your name, contact information, and the genre(s) and title(s) of your submissions(s). Your name and the title of the piece must appear on each page of your submission(s). • Entries must be in English, typed, double-spaced for prose, and single-sided on 8 1/2 x 11-inch white paper. Good quality photocopies are acceptable. We will not accept submissions on disk, fax or email. • Contributors must be residents of Saskatchewan. • Include a SASE with sufficient postage if you want your submission(s) returned. Keep a copy of your submission for your own files. • Include a short biography that will appear in the magazine should your submission be published. Mail submissions to Spring, Saskatchewan Writers' Guild, P. O. Box 3986; Regina, SK S4P 3R9 or courier-drop off at #205–2314 11th Avenue; Regina, SK S4P 0K1. Spring is provided electronically to all members of the SWG and available in print for purchase for $6.00. 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.

September/October 2010

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Unpacking My Daughter's Library

Google; the textbooks are out of date; and the hardcovers hover between obsolescence and antiquarian value.

by Joan Givner This article first appeared in the spring 2010 edition of Ars Medica.

Nevertheless when I retired, I drew up a will making careful arrangements for the disposal of the books. If I died on an even day of the month, my older daughter was to make the first selection: if on an odd day, the younger one. Then turn and turn about they would divide up the whole collection. The plan was designed to prevent strife, though I knew it was more likely to end in a tug of war.

I am sitting on the floor, surrounded by books in piles and in boxes, which I am in the process of unpacking. It is every book lover’s dream—to inherit a library. Yet this is one legacy I never expected, never would have wished for, partly because at my age it is more In the event, it proved unnecappropriate to bequeath books essary. than to inherit them. Not that there is anything of great value on my bookshelves. I am an accumulator rather than a collector and my shelves have more in common with a garage sale than a library. The reference books have been rendered useless by

One July evening, nine years later, a doctor at the Queen Elizabeth II hospital in Halifax called to tell us that our older daughter had died of a sudden allergic reaction. It is her library that I am now unpacking.

Soon after the phone call, I flew across the continent to give the eulogy at my daughter’s memorial service. Afterwards, I went directly to the house in which she had lived for the past two years. Her bedroom was just as she had left it when she walked out for the last time—a desk heaped with papers, letters, manuscripts of stories she was working on, and an overflowing bookcase. Shelves crammed with her books were all over the house. As my younger daughter said in her tribute, the way Emily lived says much about what she thought was important. She spent little time collecting anything other than books. I yearned to possess those books but even I, desperate for every relic of her life, realized that to strip the house of her books would be a cruel blow to the artist with whom she had made a home. Instead I sorted out all the manuscripts, papers, and letters,

VISITING WRITER NEEDED The SWG invites applications for a visiting writer to fill a three-week high school residency in Regina. The successful candidate will be an established writer with recent experience working in an educational environment. The program will run for three weeks in the school in 2011. The timing of the residency will be decided between the school and the visiting writer. The focus of the residencey will depend upon discussion with the school administration and teachers. It is expected that there will be some combination of classroom presentation, individual consultation, critiquing of work, and readings by students. The visiting writer will receive $3,000. Applicants must be residents of Saskatchewan. Please send your résumé to Beth McLean, Education and Publications Officer; SWG, Box 3986, Regina SK S4P 3R9; courier to 2314–11th Avenue, Suite 205, Regina SK; email: The deadline for receipt of applications is 4:30 p.m. on Friday, November 26, 2010. For more information, please call Beth at 791-7746; email The Visiting Writer program is funded by a grant from the City of Regina Arts Commision.


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September/October 2010

packing some to carry home in my luggage, others to send by mail. The books remained behind. The loss of books became a source of grief that compounded the greater loss of my daughter. It also became a festering source of resentment. In one of my daughter’s stories was a scene in which two lovers were separating: She was packing her books, soft covers in one box, the critical theory in another, the antiquarian first editions in a Joan Givner sits among the books from her daughter's library giant milk crate. for movie companies. It was copies of the same books by Rick had moved up behind her. an expedient course that not authors whose work she had Quietly. But she could feel his only compromised his art, needed when she traveled. presence. but destroyed his health. He She acquired them over and ruined his lungs by painting over again, wherever in the “Could you leave the books without a mask to protect world she was, for Emily here?” he asked. against the toxic fumes and needed books, as others need died of a pulmonary throm- food and clothing. “Why, Rick?” bosis. “A private library,” Walter I liked the look of them on my And so, my daughter’s library Benjamin tells us”, serves as shelf.” was mine. It had been restored a permanent and credible witto me in a way I never would ness to the character of its I read that passage as a de- have wished; it was at the far collector.” The library that was scription of the present situ- end of the continent, and in a on its way to me contained ation. Jim was a visual artist house soon to be dismantled. Emily’s biography. It traced who loved art more than Then a small miracle! Out the trajectory of her life—her literature, treasured paintings of the wings stepped some- college courses, teaching more than books. He liked the one I barely knew, had met stints in Korea and Poland, look of them on his shelves! only once—the wife of Jim’s brief literary infatuations, forI doubted that he would ever brother, herself a writer, a ays into philosophy and literread them, and I feared the book-lover, a survivor of the ary theory and her enduring books would be borrowed and Eastern European devastation. passion for poetry. not returned, carried outdoors She offered to catalogue the and left in the rain, given away books, pack them in boxes, Above all, it was a writer’s as gifts to friends. I felt that I and ship them to me. All this library. It spoke of what she had been robbed of something she did, sending them by a had written and what she precious. Neither the sense courier service to ensure their might have written, if she had of deprivation nor the resent- safety. lived a while longer. A tattered ment diminished over the next paperback describing the four years. Her catalogue preceded the lives of the Russian women boxes and, I saw to my shame, pilots of World War II was Then, another turn of fate! that I had misjudged Jim. He the key to her story “Night Another tragic death! Jim had had been a faithful custodian Witches.” The biography of started out as an idealistic and had lovingly preserved Clement Greenberg together painter, unconcerned that his Emily’s library; not a single with the catalogue for a show huge colour field canvasses volume was lost. The list con- of Marsden Hartley’s paintings were too large even for most tained hundreds of books— would help me understand art galleries. Eventually, he high school and college text- “Fisherman’s Last Supper.” was driven by necessity to books, special editions of her Book after book was able to earn a living by painting sets favourite authors, and multiple yield new insights, and allow

September/October 2010

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me to engage once again in a dialogue with my daughter about the books we loved and the stories she wrote. I prepared for their arrival, as one might prepare for the arrival of a child, making a special space in the room where I am now sitting, clearing shelves and buying new ones. And then, one final devastation! Only a portion of the shipment arrived. In a panic, I made desperate calls to the parcel service. Days passed in nervous anticipation, but eventually the missing boxes arrived. The delivery person, who was by this time taking a friendly interest in the situation, shook his head as he set them in the hallway. They felt odd, and looked very strange—the sides had burst and been crudely taped back together. He stood looking down as I opened them. Instead of books, they contained heavy metal pieces that I was unable to identify. He called them “clamps.” I flew into action, confident that the lost books could still be traced. After all, if the clamps were in my house, the books must be in someone else’s. The rightful owner of the clamps must be scratching his head at that very moment over a bunch of poetry books instead of the tools he needed to build whatever he was building. If not with him, the books must be in a shipping warehouse somewhere along the way. I spoke constantly by phone to the representatives of the parcel service—young women called Randi, Rebecca and Sherri. The verdict was horrifying: the parcel service had no responsibility for the books. I should contact the agent at the shipping office from which they had been sent. Besides, they were uninsured. I pro22

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Mark your calendars now for Writing North: A Winter Celebration of Writing January 21 & 22, 2011 University of Saskatchewan Featuring Eden Robinson, Louise Halfe, Patrick Lane, and Ken Brown Stay tuned for details! tested and pleaded. Surely the payment of hundreds of dollars constituted a guarantee of safe delivery. Not so, no insurance, no responsibility. Worse still, no interest at all in the recovery of the lost items. That verdict made no sense to me. I assembled the necessary documentation—the tracking numbers on the boxes, shipping dates, lists of the missing books, and close-up photographs from all angles of the smashed boxes and the metal clamps. Nothing unlocked the colossal indifference of the parcel service and their refusal to trace the books. In voices resembling those of automated check-out clerks at the supermarket, Randi, Rebecca and Sherri repeated the same lines. My long-suffering lawyer explained again and again about precedence, the legal system, and the futility of suing.

containing the deadly allergen (Emily always asked about ingredients), the 911 operator who dispatched an ambulance too late, the paramedics who arrived unprepared to save Emily’s life, the coroner’s receptionist who promised the autopsy report week after week but failed to send it until I hired a lawyer. All these feelings were revived and suffered again in a great landslide of remembered griefs. The books never appeared.

I told myself they could not have been shredded, recycled and destroyed completely. “They must be somewhere,” became my mantra. They must be in a repository of lost property, dumped in a heap, dispatched to the Salvation Army. At last, I dreamed that they were salvaged in one’s or two’s; that they found good homes with readers who loved them, and marveled at For weeks the boxes of clamps the treasures to be found in stood in the hall by the front thrift stores. door, the parcel service showing as little interest in picking So many precious books down them up as it had in finding the ages have by some evil my books. Presumably, their chance been thrown away, unfortunate owner, like me, burned by zealots, whole had omitted to insure them. libraries buried deep in the ocean or under layers of volAs time wore on, those canic ash—the Dead Sea smashed boxes of clamps Scrolls, the poems of Sappho, took on a monumental sig- the libraries of Alexandria and nificance. They became the Herculaneum. Of seven centuterrible emblem of everything ries of poetry written by the I had suffered in the last five Anglo-Saxons, little remains, years, and of all those who save a few prayers, one great inflicted so much pain—the epic, some haunting lyrics, and vendor who sold the sandwich a beautiful dream vision. September/October 2010

When I was twenty-one and a student of literature, I made the pilgrimage from Milan to an out-of-the-way town in northern Italy. There a trusting priest placed in my hands one of only four surviving Old English manuscripts—the Vercelli Book. All afternoon in the cool interior of the cathedral, I read “The Dream of the Rood.” It was written, not in the Latin of the learned clerics, but in the vernacular, the language of my ancestors. I deciphered the ancient script, smiling at the droll little creatures doodled in the margins by a playful scribe, and I thrilled to that simple climactic line: Crist waes on rode. I wondered at the strange chance by which it came to be there, and the even greater miracle of its being there still. No one knows how it got there in the first place. Did some English nobleman, making a pilgrimage to Rome, lose it? Did he leave it there and plan to retrieve it later? Was it stolen from him? It was a book from a foreign country in an incomprehensible language. Soon its method of production was rendered obsolete by the invention of the printing

press. Did it then become a curiosity? Was it valued, or just overlooked? There were so many chances for its destruction over ten centuries of plague and strife and two world wars. Yet there it was. And there it is. Fifty years later, as I sit here among the remnants of my daughter’s library, I remember that day. I hold in my hands Emily’s high school copy of Tennyson’s Idylls of the King. It is as precious and amazing to me now as the Vercelli Book was then. Opening it at the story of Lancelot and Elaine, I learn from the marginal notes that “black tarn” means “a glaciated lake,” and that Lancelot values honesty. In my mind’s eye I see her so clearly, fifteen years old, sitting in a classroom, her head bent over the book, then suddenly laughing at the neighbor who has leaned over to scribble in pencil on the page, “Hi Emily, you twit.”

"Dear, dear M! I’m sorry I’m sending this so late. I loved the novel but this is some strange translation. Hugs, Kinga" I write Kinga and she tells me about the photographs. They were taken in spring at the Metropolitan restaurant, just off the main square in Cracow. Her son Kajetan was eating his first ice cream of the year. Emily was drinking her usual strong coffee. At the next table, Czeslaw Milosz was eating a club sandwich. Thus every book in its own way yields up its secrets.

It seems that some small fragments always survive devastation to console us in our sorrow. They provide permanent and credible witness to times past and lives lost. They are what we find again when the fighting stops, the wars are over, the destruction ends, From a copy of The Beautiful and the tides of ignorance and Mrs. Seidenman by Andrzej indifference recede. Szczypiorski, fall two photographs and a note from a They are our bulwarks against despair. friend:

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 e-mail Ray at

September/October 2010

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And Another Thing ... by Robert Calder I have been a member of the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild for twenty years. Sometimes, though, it seems that I belong to the Saskatchewan Riders’ (as in Roughriders) Guild. Like the province’s population as a whole, a large proportion of the Guild's members seem to think that, for six months of the year at least, the quality of its life is significantly affected by the fortunes of its football team. Geoff Ursell and Barbara Sapergia, normally serene sophisticates, become delirious at the sight of an Andy Fantuz touchdown catch. David Carpenter, the only Saskatchewan banjo-picker that I know, has been known occasionally to become nearly as excited at seeing a winning field as at spotting a rising brown trout. Saskatchewan’s Poet Laureate, Bob Currie, and his wife, Gwen, have long had seasons tickets to Roughrider games—on the rowdy east-side stands—and they even swelled the throngs of people who braved bitterly cold weather to welcome the team back after its unfortunate extra-play loss in last year’s Grey Cup game. Dave Margoshes once wrote an article about the Rider Pride phenomenon, and he has written a brilliant football poem for Heather Hodgson’s Fan Tribute as part of the Club’s 100th anniversary celebrations this year. And I seem to remember Bernadette Wagner being caught up in the playoff fever last November. SWG President, Jerry Haigh, I regret to say, after three decades or so in Saskatchewan remains sublimely—perhaps even proudly—indifferent to the Roughriders, preferring the English rugby he played as a boy and as a young man 24

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(on at least one occasion in Africa against a large rugged opponent named Idi Amin). Well, as they say, nobody’s perfect. A much more recent arrival to Saskatchewan, Yann Martel, on the other hand, has caught the bug. Early in the 2007 season, my wife, Holly, and Peter Stoicheff took him to a game at Mosaic Stadium. Yann has never been much of a football fan, but the electric atmosphere in a packed Mosaic Stadium and some dramatic scoring plays hooked him. As the season went on and his travels took him out of the country, Holly pursued him electronically with news of the Riders’ progress, and when they were about to face the BC Lions in the Western Final, she sent him a picture she had taken of me on the Yucatan peninsula. I was wearing a Roughrider

shirt and standing beside the Chacmool, the famous reclining figure of Chac, the rain god of the Maya and one of their most important deities. He is poised with a bowl on his abdomen, implacably and relentlessly awaiting a sacrifice—frequently in the Mayan golden age it was a beating human heart—and those who did not pay homage to Chac frequently encountered drought and suffering. Seeing the picture, Yann channelled the spirit of Chac as only the author of Life of Pi could. “Chac?” he wrote. “Holly, have you not looked at your Rider roster? CHAC PLAYS FOR THE RIDERS. Chac will eat the children of the BC Lions. Chac will strike them with palsy for twenty years. Chac will crush their bones to a fine white sand. Chac will rip their vocal cords out so that they cannot speak

CALL FOR SWG BOARD NOMINATIONS The SWG Board elections will be conducted once again at the AGM in October during the fall conference. In accordance with the Guild bylaws, several term positions are available. This year the Nominations Committee of the Board is seeking volunteer SWG members to let their names stand for President for a one-year term and as one of five members-at-large, one of which is a one-year term (completing the last half of a two-year term), while four are the usual two-year terms. The Board of the SWG is made up of members from across the province, both urban and rural, dedicated to serving the membership. Members-at-large are elected for a term of two years on a rotating basis with new members being elected every year. The President and other members of the board are eligible to serve two consecutive terms. There are a minimum of five Board meetings per year and usually no more than eight, which are held in various locations around the province to accommodate Board members as much as possible. Members are encouraged to submit their names, or if you wish to nominate someone, please be sure of their willingness to serve before sending their name forward. For information about the SWG Board or to submit a nomination please contact the Chair of the Nominations Committee, Danica Lorer, at or the SWG office. September/October 2010

even to themselves.” As we know, the Roughriders did play with a particular ferocity on the day and defeated the Lions soundly and moved on to the Grey Cup game against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. Saskatchewan then faced the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the Grey Cup game, and a few days before the championship game, Yann wrote again to say that he had received an e-mail from Chac. “He informed me,” Yann said, “that he has already visited the Bombers, taken their bodies in spirit, eaten their limbs and is using their living bodies as doorstops on his palace, with one on the outside as the doorbell—you should have to step on his testicles. So they should be good and weak on Sunday.”

2010 JOHN V. HICKS AWARD WINNERS We are pleased to announce the winners of the 2010 John V. Hicks Manuscript Awards. First Place: Two Rooms, by Mansel Robinson Second Place: Kobyla, by B.D. Miller Third Place: A Place in the Shade, by Rodney A. McLean We hope you will join us to hear readings by the award winners at the Fall Conference in Saskatoon. See page 12 for more information.

and comments. From the beginning we sent copies to two close friends, but in the past year or so the readership has to grown to family members scattered throughout the world and friends eager for Those who doubt the power more news than provided by of Chac might recall that the the local media. Bombers were severely weakened by the loss of their start- Our observations are a record ing quarterback, who had suf- of exhilaration and joy—emofered a season-ending injury tions felt much more frequentthe week before, and they suc- ly in Saskatchewan in recent cumbed to the Roughriders. years—and of frustration and In 2009, though, when the disappointment. They are a Riders won the West, we were catalogue of wild speculation so sure of their strength that about player signings, coachno one bothered to consult ing and managerial changes, Chac, and we lost the Grey analyses of upcoming games Cup game on the most bizarre and the inevitable postmorfinish in CFL history. Truly, one tems. They are tinged with the mocks—or ignores—the gods inevitable sporting schadenat one’s peril. freude as we relish the lamentations of fans of flounderGlen Sorestad, Saskatch- ing teams from Edmonton, ewan’s first Poet Laureate Calgary, and Vancouver; and, and recent inductee to the while they contain occasionOrder of Canada, dabbled ally brilliant foresight, they are with sportswriting before en- full of predictions that went joying a career in education, wildly awry. and he has long been an avid Roughrider fan. It was inevi- As zealous as we all are, table, therefore, that when we though, no one can match Rebegan to run into each other gina writer and editor, Heather at various events the conver- Hodgson, for devotion to the sation should turn to football. Roughriders. Growing up, she Soon it became obvious that was interested in, but never we weren’t seeing each other passionate about, football but often enough to do the sub- this changed in the late 1980s ject justice, and so we began when, curious about what atexchanging email observations tracted fans, she attended a September/October 2010

game in Taylor Field. Before long she was attending games regularly, and, when the Riders won the 1989 Grey Cup, she threw the biggest party in Regina. In the years since then, she has bought seasons tickets, written about the Riders, become a close friend of former defensive coach, Richie Hall, Ed McQuarters, Steve Mazurak, George Reed, and other Club personnel. And she has spent hundreds of hours organizing HeArt of the Rider Nation, the Roughrider fan art show at the Cumberland Gallery, and an accompanying parade through Regina streets in celebration of the Club’s 100th Anniversary. Why do you do it, you may ask. Why spend so much time watching, thinking, and fretting about a group of men or women playing a game, when you could be doing something useful like improving your mind with the poetry of Anne Carson, working your way through Jame Joyce’s Finnegans Wake, or absorbing the literary criticism of Jacques Derrida? Why waste words on pass receivers or place kickers when you could be writing another book (while people are still publishing books)?

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always been underestimated by the rest of Canada. Every spring, as predictably as the appearance of new potholes in the city streets, sportswriters forecast modest—or even disastrous—seasons for the Saskatchewan team. More often than not, the season ends in surprise for the scribes as unheralded players, many of them Saskatchewan men bred to work hard and persevere against the odds, push the team to unexpected success. Surely Saskatchewan writers, frequently ignored and underestimated by the Toronto gliterati, and often achieving Throughout these years, the remarkable success against Roughriders, like the province the odds, can feel a strong kinAny art, whether it be paint- itself and its people, have ship with such a sports club. ing, music, ballet, drama, or writing, presents the artist with sets of rules—the canvas, the sonnet or free form OSITIONS TILL VAILABLE FOR verse, short fiction, the symphony, the two-hour play—and ENTORS AND PPRENTICES the artist has to perform with inspiration, originality, craft There are spaces still available for both mentors and and technique within this apprentices in the 2010 Mentorship Program. frame of reference. And our breath is taken away by those To be an apprentice, the following criteria applies: who can most creatively work • they will have a body of work of sufficient quality to within those rules. benefit from the program • they will have work in progress when they apply The other great attraction • they will not have had a book published (or have had to sport, as Globe and Mail a book-length manuscript accepted for publication) sportswriter Stephen Brunt in the genre in which they wish to apprentice eloquently explained recently • they will have demonstrated their commitment to at the Festival of Words, writing by having participated in some form of foris that it can be a place of mal or informal professional development deeply felt communal coming • they will be free to devote a significant amount of together. It is the powerful time to the program: a minimum of 20-25 hours per sense of a community sharmonth ing the same emotion at the • they will be Saskatchewan residents 19 years of age same time that occurred in or older churches in a more religious age and more often in ancient Mentors must meet the following qualifications: Greek theatres than in mod• the possession of a significant body of published ern playhouses. No one who work has cheered a last-minute, • experience as a teacher, workshop leader, mentor, come-from-behind Roughrider writer-in-residence, or editor victory in Taylor Field or who • the ability to commit time (15-20 hours per month) walked out of Calgary’s Mcduring the mentorship period Mahon Stadium with 43,000 • Saskatchewan residency Saskatchewan fans grieving in funereal silence and gloom folFor more information visit the website at www.skwritlowing the Grey Cup loss can or contact Tracy Hamon at (306)791-7743 or fail to experience the intensity of shared emotion. One answer is that there are more parallels between sport and art than there might seem at first glance. The fascination of any sport is seeing how the athletes perform in a particular frame of reference with particular rules and limitations. Sometimes, as in baseball or football, those rules are complex and almost arcane; sometimes, as in soccer or curling, they are simple. In either case, the athletes have to have craft and technique and the physical ability to carry out that craft; and frequently—as in a boxing match or an Olympic marathon—they need courage or at least indomitable will.

Few sports organizations in the world are as intimately and utterly attached to its community as the Roughrider Football Club. The oldest continuous football club in western Canada, its history parallels that of the province: it began optimistically in the boom year of 1910, it lost some of its best players in the Great War, it nearly disappeared in the Great Depression, it struggled to keep up with more affluent Canadian clubs in the late twentieth century, and today it is prosperous, dynamic and successful.



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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 threemonth 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 were 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 three-month 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. There is no application form for this program. Instead, send the following material: • a cover letter which includes the following information: • all your contact information (including mailing address and work and home phone numbers) • a statement confirming that you are 19 years or older • a statement confirming that you were a resident of Regina as of January 1, 2010 • a statement of intent—this is to be separate from the cover letter • include a description and brief outline of your writing project (no longer than two pages total) • a sample of your writing • the sample should be double-spaced for prose, single or double-spaced for poetry • pages should be numbered sequentially • this sample must be a portion of the project to be worked on • this sample should be ten pages long; do not send extra pages as they will be discarded • an outline or synopsis of the project is not considered to be part of your writing sample Do not submit literary resumes, letters of support, reviews of previous work, or evaluations; these will be discarded. To • • • • • • • • • • •

ensure that your application is processed, please follow the submission guidelines below: all material must be on 8½ x 11-inch white paper entries must be typed in black ink all material must be typed in plain text fonts (e.g. Times New Roman, Arial, Courier) and not in display fonts such as Handel Gothic keep font size to 11 or 12 point entries must be single-sided at least a one-inch margin on all sides avoid hole-punched paper do not send illustrations or photos to fasten submissions, use paper clips (including fold-back clips)–avoid staples or any other fastener which goes through the paper (including binders and presentation covers) good-quality photocopies are acceptable if the writer's name appears on any page of an entry, statement, or writing sample, it will not be accepted for the competition. The writer's name may appear on the cover page only. All entries will be numbered upon receipt so they can be judged anonymously

Keep a copy of your submission; material will not be returned. Applications must be postmarked by Friday, January 28, 2010 or via email by midnight at Please Note: Material sent to the box number may take an extra day for processing and may therefore arrive late. If you are sending material close to the deadline, please consider Xpress Post, Priority Post, courier, or special delivery. If sending by courier, send to the courier address listed below, not the box number. Mailing Address City of Regina Writing Award Saskatchewan Writers' Guild Box 3986, Regina SK S4P 3R9

Courier or Drop-off Address #205-2314 11th Avenue Regina, SK S4P 3R9

For more information: Tracy Hamon, Program Officer, Saskatchewan Writers' Guild; Phone: 791-7743; Fax: 565-8554; Email:

September/October 2010

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Five Days/Five Writers/Five Stories by Jeanette C. Montgomery Retreats are meant to invigorate and revitalize. A writers’ retreat allows you to break away from your normal routine and concentrate solely on writing. Mark Labrow, founder of World Retreats states, “When you participate in a writing holiday, you’ll be inspired in the presence of St. Therese Institute of Faith and Mission others and potentially find that final push that allows you to turn your dream of Bruno is a town of 600 people to our wing of the "new" writing professionally into a located 86 kilometres east building. Story Refiner memof Saskatoon. There were bers Verley Robson, Beth reality.” rumours of highway flooding Matheson and Dianne Young Hoping for some peace and on # 5 but a quick stop at the registered shortly after I had creative time, five writers service station at the junction arrived. Myrna Guymer, a converged on St. Therese of Highway 2 & 5 confirmed Round Robin member, had Institute of Faith and Mission the road was fine as far as arrived the previous evening in Bruno, Saskatchewan (for- Bruno—"but don’t try to go to due to the travel time from merly the Ursuline Convent) in Humboldt," I was told. I have The Pas, Manitoba. nothing against Humboldt but the last week of July. the information was exactly A short while was spent setting up our rooms to creDianne Young, a member of what I had hoped to hear. ate the perfect writing nest, Saskatoon’s Story Refiners Check in time at St. Therese followed by a walk before and Round Robin Writers, had Centre was after lunch so, supper which resulted in the organized the retreat for chilarriving in Bruno at 11:45, I discovery of the All Citizens dren’s writers as she has done decided to grab some lunch at Centre, an art collective and for the three previous years. the Bruno Café. All conversa- music venue as well as café For those who work full time tion stopped when I entered run by visual artist Serena and have family commit- and I was greeted by the silent McCarroll and artist/musician ments, finding time to write stares of the diners—eight Tyler Brett. We were in luck. is always a challenge, so I males in work clothes. It That evening All Citizens was jumped at the chance when I seemed rude to turn and run featuring music by Wax Manso I grabbed a copy of the nequin, John Kirby and Trevor received Dianne’s email. Saskatoon Sun from a rack Howard. We also checked out It can be an ordeal to pack for and sat at the first unoccupied the grocery store, pharmacy a stay at an unfamiliar facility. table. It had been a number of and hours for the public liI knew clothing would be cas- years since I’d been the object brary—all this within a few blocks of St. Therese’s. ual but Saskatchewan sum- of so much male attention! mers require attire for +30 days and +10 evenings. Into the suitcase went the jeans and sweatshirt as well as the tanks and shorts. Better to have them than not. For me a laptop is a must and since it plays CDs, it covers that function as well. In the end I took the fan and left the printer and radio. (Next year I will take the printer and radio too.) 28

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I was relieved when a young family and then an elderly couple entered. The menu had a selection of Chinese and typical Saskatchewan fare. My lunch was delicious, just like Mom used to make.

We had an hour’s writing before supper—what a delight to have someone else prepare delicious food and have it appear before us. Meals were available for special diets as well.

After lunch I checked in at Dianne, Beth and I chose to St. Therese’s and was taken attend the musical entertainthrough a maze of hallways ment at All Citizens Centre September/October 2010

that evening. The opening acts, John Kirby and Trevor Howard, were outstanding, and Wax Mannequin was an excellent guitarist with an unusual lyric style. (His music was described in the August 12 StarPhoenix as mutant psyche-folk. I’d say that’s pretty accurate.) All three musicians hail from Hamilton, Ontario. The next morning early risers had time for a walk and a bit of writing before our 8:00 a.m. breakfast. The habit of socializing for a short time (or longer) after each meal began at Tuesday’s breakfast. Although eager to write we still wanted social interaction. That morning`s conversation revealed Verley and I had both loved writing in early grade school, Beth started her first novel during grade five math class and Dianne and Myrna both began writing as adults. Subsequent discussions disclosed, although we were all children’s or young adult writers, some also write magazine articles, adult short stories, non-fiction or blogs; some write long-hand while others write directly to computer. Beth obviously loved the outdoors since she made another writing hideaway on the 2nd floor balcony, spending most daytime hours there writing (and sometimes conversing with crows); Diane jogged; I enjoyed early morning walks. Later that day Dianne was cheering for Tuesday since that meant we still had two and a half days to write, write, write. St. Therese has one drawback, no internet access. However the public library, located two blocks down Main Street, has two terminals for public use. We made regular use of these for research, checking and sending emails and, on one visit, to print the Periodic

Table of Elements. (What was Dianne concocting behind her closed door?) Unfortunately Bruno’s library is not yet active on the Provincial Library Services Consortium so we were unable to withdraw any books. (I would expect by next summer’s retreat this will be resolved.) Evenings were filled with writing, walks and rousing games of Scrabble or Balderdash. Even with five writers Balderdash tripped us up with keedah and niddy noddy (no, it’s not the Enid Blyton character).

sidewalk back five blocks and found myself half-way down Main Street. From there I was able to find my way back to St. Therese, situated at the end of the street. It made for a humorous tale at the breakfast table. That evening the St. Therese director, Jim Anderson, joined us for supper. He is also known as James Anderson, co-author of the Legacy of the Stone Harp saga. What a fortunate coincidence for a group of writers. Topics ranged from self-editing to publishers and the differences of writing for

Front: Verley Robson, Beth Matheson, Dianne Young Back: Jeanette Montgomery, Myrna Guymer

Wednesday morning I got lost in Bruno! Well, not really lost, but definitely turned around. Rising at 6:30, I decided to go for a walk in the beautiful morning sun. The grounds around St. Therese boast a cherry orchard, apiary, flower beds, vegetable garden and the town cemetery. I wandered through the cemetery and followed a path through some trees ending up on a residential street. Not realizing the lane had taken me about two blocks past the convent I continued along the sidewalk and, in a short time, was facing a grain field and wide open prairie—very disconcerting for a city dweller. I followed the

September/October 2010

various age groups. Jim was off to Saskatoon on Thursday for a reading and signing of Darkling Fields of Arvon, the second book in the series. Each day some of us slept late, some had afternoon naps but by Thursday, Dianne, Verley and Beth had finished their projects and were working on other writing. Thursday evening we each read a portion of our stories and gave encouragement and feedback to each other. I found it inspiring to hear the others’ excerpts and hope the books are picked up by publishers soon so I can read the whole of them.

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Friday’s breakfast brought the sad reality that this was our last meal together. We lingered longer than usual over our coffee but finally returned to our rooms to set furniture to rights, pack up and depart. Looking over what I had accomplished in the week, I was satisfied and hoped I could keep up the momentum once I returned home to my usual time crunch. On the drive back to Saskatoon I had to pull over twice in order to jot down plot twists that occurred to me. There is nothing like a writers’ retreat to get the creativity flowing.

Information on other Saskatchewan writing retreats can be found at http://www. St. Therese: All Citizens:

MANUSCRIPT EVALUATION SERVICE 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 whom you select. If you want a certain writer to evaluate your work, you must obtain his or her approval. Please check the SWG database and indicate your preference. Your choice must be approved by our program officer. For more information please visit http://www.skwriter. com/?s=programsservices&p=manuscriptevaluation service; phone (306) 791-7743 or email programs@

An aside note: All Citizens Centre will be hosting Brecken Hancock as Writer-inResidence beginning November 2010. Brecken is a poet and essayist originally from Saskatchewan. Her chapbook, Strung, was published by JackPine Press in 2005. Currently, Hancock is also completing her PhD at the University of New Brunswick in contemporary fiction and the hermeneutics of reading. During her time at the All Citizens residency, Hancock will be working toward the completion of her first fulllength manuscript of poetry, Broom Broom.


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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.

Second Chances: Stories of Brain Injury Survivors by Lynda Monahan Saskatchewan Acquired Brain Injury Association

Second Chances is a unique collection of individual stories of eighteen survivors of acquired brain injuries. These are stories of pain and loss, of recovery and hope. As survivor Robert Bear says in his introduction, "Survivors of acquired brain injuries need to talk. They need to tell their stories. They need to know that someone listening understands their invisible wounds—the loneliness, rage and grief that they bear. And they need hope, to live well in spite of their scars." Lynda Monahan is the author of two collections of poetry, a slow dance in the flames and what my body knows, both published by Coteau Books. Her work has been published in a number of Canadian literary magazines and broadcast nationally on CBC Radio. She has recently completed a third manuscript “red boots in the snow” currently being considered at a publishing house.

The Secret of the Stone Circle by Judith Silverthorne Coteau Books

Twelve-year-old Emily Bradford travels to Scotland to trace her family’s roots and to get to know her father again. Something leads her to take along a 700-year-old mirror, inherited from her grandmother. A face appears in the mirror—a woman from the time the mirror was made. She asks Emily to find her lost child. The mirror helps Emily travel in time to an ancient battle at the stone circle of Aikey Brae. As warriors with claymores slay people all around her, she helps save the life of Kiresz, a child who will grow up to be one of her ancestors. Judith Silverthorne is a multiple award-winning Regina-based writer. She is the author of 10 books for young readers with Coteau books, including: The Secret of Sentinel Rock, The Secret of the Stone House, Dinosaur Hideout, Dinosaur Breakout, Dinosaur Stakeout and Dinosaur Blackout.

September/October 2010

A Time for God: my reflections by Adriana Marella Wolfe

A Time for God is a meditative exploration of the author's personal experiences and insights about God moments in her life. Adriana Marella Wolfe is a teacher, historian, freelance writer, mom, and is currently in a lay ministry program.

Face Off by Maureen Ulrich Coteau Books

Things are perfect for Jessie: high school, hockey and Mark. Jessie thinks she has things under control. She can

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handle the new environment and the new pressure. One party, one wrong choice and all that changes. MySpace; YouTube—her actions are everywhere. And worst of all Mark is gone and doesn’t want to ever speak to her. How will she fix this? Once again, hockey is the antidote to life’s mysteries and navigating the ice is a whole lot easier than high school. Jessie learns who her true friends are and maybe, just maybe, she can put things right for Mark and her. Face Off is Maureen Ulrich's second hockey novel for teens. Its prequel, Power Plays, received critical acclaim and was a finalist in the Saskatchewan Book Awards. Maureen obtained Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Education degrees from the University of Saskatchewan, and has taught middleyears students for 23 years. Maureen currently lives in Lampman, in southeastern Saskatchewan

This book teaches valuable lessons about leadership and offers a pragmatic look at how the business world works. Whether you are a young employee, a manager, a mentor or a CEO, The Leadership Formula will be helpful in managing your own and others' careers. Terry Tuharsky is a business consultant and writer living in Regina. A former chairman of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce in Korea, he is also an honorary citizen of the city of Seoul and a former member of its Foreign Investment Advisory Council. Terry received his Masters in Business Administration from the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario and his Bachelor of Science degree from Northwest Missouri State University.

Blue Duets by Kathleen Wall Brindle and Glass Publishing Ltd.

The Leadership Formula: What do fifty-year-olds know? by Terry Tuharsky Dakota Publishing

A novel in three voices, Blue Duets probes the lives of its middle-aged characters: Lila, a pianist whose mother is dying of cancer; her husband Rob, a history professor accused of harassment by his


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September/October 2010

department head; and Kevin, a gay violinist who is also Lila’s musical partner. In this novel, life at middle age is a time for questioning, not for settling comfortably into one’s compromises with life. Lila decides she cannot afford to passively follow a score someone else has written, but must listen intently to the dissonances of her marriage and learn to improvise both life and music; in turn, Rob and Kevin find that their own reassessments of their lives are on the horizon. Kathleen Wall is an English professor at the University of Regina, an award-winning teacher, and the author of two books of poetry, most recent of which is Time's Body (Hagios 2005), which won an SWG Manuscript Award and was a finalist for the Saskatchewan Book Awards. An avid quilter and knitter, Kathleen lives in Regina, surrounded by family, music, and cats. Blue Duets is her first novel.

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: November 30 Prairie Fire Press and McNally Robinson Booksellers`annual poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction contests. Details at Deadline: November 30 Tesseracts Fifteen: A Case of Quite Curious Tales The Tesseracts anthology series is open to submissions in either English or French from Canadians, landed immigrants, long time residents, and expatriates. French stories must have been translated into English prior to submission. The theme for Tesseracts Fifteen is young adult speculative fiction (includes science fiction, fantasy, and horror). Submissions must appeal to the YA audience and be PG-14 in content. Tesseracts Fifteen is open to both short fiction and poetry.

Chicken Soup for the Soul book by Canadians for Canadians. Send your inspirational, humorous, or heartwarming stories that take place in Canada or are written by Canadians. Stories or poems need to be true and about personal experiences. Stories should not have been previously published by Chicken Soup for the Soul or other major publications. Submit to:http://chickensoup. com/> Deadline: March 31 The 2011 National Indie Excellence Awards are open

NIEA recognizes excellence in independent and selfpublished books, a category that accounts for a rapidly growing segment of a publishing industry going through almost constant transformation. For information about the contest including how to submit books, please visit

Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve written your book . . .

ow what?

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

The maximum length for stories is 5,500 words, with shorter works preferred. Inquiries and submissions can be sent to tesseracts15@ Guidelines are available at http://www. tess15/t15-catalog.html

Our extensive list of publishing services include:     

Deadline: December 17 RBC Bronwen Wallace Award for Emerging Writers. Details at http://www.writerstrust. com/Awards/RBC-BronwenWallace-Award-for-EmergingWriters.aspx

for submissions. Books published by self-published authors, small press, and independent publishers can be submitted for consideration in the categories of their choice. Winners and finalists will be announced nationally in May 2011.

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:

Deadline: January 30 101 Stories Celebrating The Country and the People, a

Benchmark Press . . . Your Partner in Publishing

September/October 2010

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EVENTS REGINA October 30, 1:00 p.m. Adriana Marella Wolfe, A Time For God, Sherwood Village Library October 29, 6:30 p.m. Marie Donais Calder, the first three novels in The Other Side series: The Other Side of War, The Other Side of Fear, and The Other Side of Pain November 27, 5:00 p.m. Saskatchewan Book Awards Gala The eighteenth annual Saskatchewan Book Awards Gala will take place at the Conexus Arts Centre. During the Gala, all 14 writing and publishing awards will be presented. This year’s guest speaker is Steven Galloway, author of three novels: Finnie Walsh; Ascension; and The Cellist of Sarajevo. For more information on Steven Galloway, go to www. For more information on the Gala, go to www. awards-gala.html. Tickets

are $70 each and can be purchased on-line through PayPal after October 14 or by contacting (306) 5691585 or info@bookawards. November 30, 7:30 p.m. Poet Laureate announcement at Government House. Stay tuned to the SWG's website for more information. SASKATOON October 17, 1:30 p.m. Remember 1885! You are invited to a gathering at the Saskatoon Indian and Métis Friendship Centre, 168 Wall Street, hosted by Louise Halfe [Crooked Good] and featuring Rita Bouvier [The Batoche Musical], Doug Cuthand [Tapwe], Myrna Kostash [The Frog Lake Reader] and Morningstar Mercredi [A Warrior's Spirit]. This event follows the closing of the SWG AGM, so please join us before heading home.

McNally Robinson October 19, 7:30 p.m. John Ralston Saul and Joseph Boyden, reading and signing their new additions to Penguin's Extraordinary Canadians, Louis-Hippolyte La Fontaine & Robert Baldwin, and Louis Riel & Gabriel Dumont October 16, 1:00 p.m. Saskatchewan Science Fiction and Fantasy Authors. For a list of authors visit the McNally Robinson website: _ events October 20, 7:30 p.m. John Gormley, Left Out: Saskatchewan’s NDP and the Relentless Pursuit of Mediocrity October 23, 1:00 p.m. Saskatchewan Kids Author Celebration WEYBURN October 24, 2:00 p.m. Marie Donais Calder, the first three novels in The Other Side series: The Other Side of War, The Other Side of Fear, and The Other Side of Pain, 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 Colonies ❍ SWG Foundation ❑ I'd like to join or renew my SWG membership. ($75; $55 for students and seniors)

Mail cheque or money order to: Saskatchewan Writers' Guild, Box 3986, Regina, SK, S4P 3R9. Thank you for your donation. A tax receipt will be issued for the donation portion. You can also donate via Paypal at: http://www.skwriter. com/?s=payments_and_ donations&p=guild

❑ I would like a subscription to grain. ❍ 1 year individual: $30 (includes GST & shipping) ❍ 2 year individual: $46 (includes GST & shipping) ❍ Sample copy of the most recent issue: $13 (includes GST & shipping) 34

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September/October 2010

The Backbone Contributors (up to $50) Allan, Sandra Archibald-Barber, Jesse Biasotto, Linda Bircham, Doris Crooks, Sarah Dow, Jeannette Episkenew, Jo-Ann Givner, Joan Gossner, Carol Grandel, Loaine Guymer, Myrna Hamilton, Sharon harding-russell, gillian Leech, Robert MacFarlane, Sharon McRae, Bronwen Meadows, Sally Miller, Dianne Mitchell, Ken Morrell, Kathleen Muirhead, Laurie Nicholson, Wynne Olsen, Joan Ramshaw, Betty Rice, Bruce Rogers, Evelyn Slade, Anne Roussin, Thomas St. George, Marie Elyse 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 Dorion, Anne Epp, Joanne Federico, Meg Halsband, Ilonka Kostash, Myrna Kroetsch, Robert Lorer, Danica Martin, Miriam McLuhan, Jean Monahan, Lynda Parley, Kathleen Parley, Kay Quigley, Ellen Richards, David Robertson, Deanna Vail, Deborah Ward, Donald Willow, Rose Witham, Janice

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 Lorer, Danica MacKenzie, Jean Malcolm, David Merle, Charles Monahan, Lynda Mulholland, Valerie Silverthorne, Judith Toews, Terry Ulrich, Maureen Walter, Murray Wilock, Robyne Wilson, Garrett

Benefactors ($200-$499) Alford, Edna Boerma, Gloria Byers, Shirley Currie, Robert Goldman, Lyn Klassen, Karen Schmidt, Brenda

Patron (over $500) Balogh, Mary Calder, Robert Goldman, Lyn Wilson, Lisa

Writers Assistance Fund Currie, Robert Glaze, David MacIntyre, R.P. Mikolayenko, Linda Ursell, Geoffrey


Banks, Shelley Bower, Annette Campbell, Sandra Carpenter, David Clark, Hilary Deeley, Anne Galbraith, William Kostash, Myrna Lawrence, Katherine LeBox, Annette September/October 2010

McCaig, JoAnn Robson, Verley Sarsfield, Pete Semotuk, Lydia Semotuk, Verna Sorensen, Susan Westmoreland, Cherie


Kloppenburg, Cheryl and Henry Nelson-Mile, Amy


Adam, Sharon Glaze, David Jeerakathil, Rangi NoĂŤl-Maw, Martine Sorestad, Glen Stewart, Sue

Facilitated Retreat

Adam, Sharon Armstrong, Robert Blenkinsop, Sandra Boerma, Gloria Buhr, Nola Carpenter, David Currie, Robert Dickinson, Rodney Friesen, Bernice Garreck, Denis Goldman, Lyn Haigh, Jerry Hall, Marlene Hawley, Maureen Hill, Gerry Hogarth, Susan Kellner, Hazel Lauder, Shirley Louise, Sandra MacIntrye, R.P. MacKenzie, Kevin Margoshes, Dave Michaelson, Andy Miller, Dianne Minogue, Leeann Mitchell, June Mourre, Helen Nelson-Mile, Amy Remlinger, Paula Jane Ryan, Edda Shah, Ravi Topas, Marianna Trussler, Michael White, Gayle Wright, Wendy

Judy McCrosky Bursury Buhr, Nola Romanow, James Kirk, Drew McCrosky, Judy

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freeLance September/October 2010 Volume 39 Number 5

Publication Mail Agreement #40063014 Return Undeliverable Canadian Addresses to: Administration Centre Printing Services 111â&#x20AC;&#x201C;2001 Cornwall Street Regina, SK S4P 3X9 Email:


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September/October 2010

October 2010 Freelance