05 August 2010


The always surprising Chicago poet Gabriel Gudding leads a poetry workshop in Toronto on August 12, 5:30 to 7:30 at the offices of Mansfield Press, 1 Wiltshire, Unit 204A (near Dupont & Symington).

Here's the skinny:

Encomium and Petition

This workshop will explore the writing of these two kinds of poems. We'll examine contemporary and experimental, as well as ancient and consecrated, examples of these subgenres in order to understand the practices, methods, uses and relevancy of this ancient cultural work done by poetry.

To register for this rare opportunity, write hunkamooga [at] sympatico [dot] ca. Cost is $25. Preregistration is a must.

The workshop is co-presented by Meet the Presses and Mansfield Press.


Gabe will also be reading later that evening with Gary Barwin and Stuart Ross at The Piston (Bloor & Ossington). Further details coming your way soon.

Gabriel Gudding is a poet and essayist. His books include A Defense of Poetry and Rhode Island Notebook. He teaches experimental poetry writing at Illinois State University, and his work has been translated into French, Vietnamese, Spanish and Danish.

This reading marks the launch of his chapbooks Congratulations on Being Here (Paper Kite Press) and Small Celestial Theater (Proper Tales Press).

"In a crowded field, Gudding's work demands attention." — The Boston Review

"This is the first 21st-century classic." — Alan Sondheim

"This book is one of the best books of poetry I've seen for many years." — Stride Magazine

"Rhode Island Notebook is an act of kindness — to his daughter, to himself, even to poetry." — Cultural Society

Over and out.

03 August 2010

my imprint logo, residency at Queen's University, & other stuff

So, publisher Denis De Klerck at Mansfield Press has given me my own imprint, under which I'll publish some fiction, some non-fiction, and mainly poetry. Have I mentioned this here before? I'm not sure. Anyway, the first two titles that will be released under the "a stuart ross book" imprint are set to launch in October, at the press's 10th-anniversary hoedown. The books are both first collections of poetry: Goodbye, Ukulele, by Leigh Nash, and Stray Dog Embassy, by Natasha Nuhanovic.

I think the plan is that the previous books I've acquired for the press and edited will become retroactively "a stuart ross book" books. Those'd be titles by Alice Burdick, David W. McFadden, Lillian Necakov, Peter Norman, Jim Smith, Robert Earl Stewart, Steve Venright and Tom Walmsley. It'd be great if you could go buy tons of them so they go out of print and the logo can appear on the second printing.

Oh, my logo: there it is up there. I wanted it to be stark and a bit goofy, to maybe undercut any ego. Hey, it wasn't my idea to have my name in the imprint title!

Very sad that This Ain't the Rosedale Library has been closed. Pages and This Ain't both, in such a short period of time. What happens to small presses as indie booksellers close? Well, I think they'll have to push for direct sales to the public from their websites. You can visit Mansfield (and order books [free postage in Canada!]) right over here. Meanwhile, somebody oughta give Charlie Huisken a big shiny medal for all he's done in the past 30 years for the Toronto literary community. I look forward to seeing what he's up to next.

In other news, I'm going to be writer in residence at Queen's University in Kingston this fall. I just sent in my office hours, which was pretty exciting. I'm hoping to meet with a dozen students a week about their manuscripts, as well as doing various events in the off-campus community: workshops, stuff on radio, and readings (giving and hosting).

Also, after a lot of back-and-forth-and-back between me, ECW editor Michael Holmes and Underlines Studio designer Fidel Peña, we have a prototype cover for my 2011 novel, Snowball, Dragonfly, Jew. I hope to post it here soon.

I also hope to post soon exciting news of a Toronto visit by Chicago poet Gabriel Gudding, one of my favourite American writers. Stay tuned.

What else? Last week's Poetry Boot Camp was a sell-out and a lot of fun. Some good writing happened amid a really interesting group of people. That'll probably be my last Toronto Boot Camp until the new year.

Over and out.