17 November 2007

Mansfield Launch and Poetry Boot Camp!

A couple of upcoming events in Toronto....

Late last year, Mansfield Press publisher Denis De Klerck offered to let me select and edit a couple of poetry books for his fall 2007 list. Needless to say I was very excited about the prospect, and I made a list of dream books I'd like to work on. Denis himself was concentrating on his new City Building Book imprint and on growing Mansfield's fiction list, as well as the second book of poetry by Toronto poet and critic Christopher Doda.

Well, the deed is done, and the launch is imminent, and Denis has asked me to do another two titles for fall 2008. I hope you can come to this Tuesday's release party, and listen to some poetry and play some pool and meet some neat people.


Mansfield Press celebrates the launch of fall poetry titles by Christopher Doda, Lillian Necakov and Steve Venright with a reading and billiards party!

Tuesday, November 20, from 6:30 till late.
The Rivoli Pool Hall, 334 Queen West

Readings at 7:30. Pool tables on the press till 10.
Door prizes, munchies, and cash bar.

Your host: Denis De Klerck, Mansfield publisher and editor
Your emcee: Stuart Ross, Mansfield associate editor

Your authors:

Christopher Doda - Aesthetics Lesson
Lillian Necakov - The Bone Broker
Steve Venright - Floors of Enduring Beauty

We'd love to see you there!

With his first full-length work since the acclaimed Spiral Agitator (2000), Steve Venright sails even further out onto uncharted literary waters. Floors of Enduring Beauty is laden with delirious extended prose poems, distorted philosophical musings, elaborate advice for instant gratification, a spoonerist narrative that rollicks on the high seas and other products of Venright’s ecstatic, hilarious and sometimes downright rude vision. It’s Baudelaire meets Lewis Carroll meets Monty Python—and it’s unlike anything else in Canadian literature.

In The Bone Broker, Lillian Necakov steps into the operating room of human history to take the pulse of a troubled world. This is visceral poetry that bears witness to a “landscape haunted by centuries of rage,” in which the drama of public life takes a personal toll on those who are “infected with the ceremony of war.” Necakov’s montage of startling imagery is a powerful antidote to indifference and an elegaic testament to the elements of the human condition that once made us whole.

Ranging in form from elegy to satire to metaphysics to blues, Christopher Doda’s latest book, Aesthetics Lesson, is an exciting meditation on art and power. His poems investigate the ‘unnamed cities of light’ created by the artist, reflecting and dissecting how the creative impulse can lead to both solace and destruction. Centred around the title piece, a crown of self-generating glosas that examine the role of the artist in our mechanized and digitized society, Aesthetics Lesson offers a potent landscape not easily forgotten. Love and anger, rage and compassion burst and oscillate as Doda looks to the past and future to document ‘half-lives trembling on the lip of time.’ Doda’s gift is to challenge notions of progress and change and to take an unflinching look at the curious and dangerous metamorphosis of the human spirit.


* * *


There are still a few spaces available in my November 25 Poetry Boot Camp. Email me at hunkamooga@sympatico.ca if you're interested in registering, and please pass this info on to anyone else you think might enjoy the session.

This workshop has just been recommended as a way of writing "new, interesting and original poems" by Toronto poet David Clink in his essay "The Mechanics of Creation," in Imagination in Action (The Mercury Press, 2007).

Sunday, November 25, 10 am to 5 pm (includes lunch break)
95 Wychcrest Avenue (Fred Dowling Co-op Boardroom, near Christie & Dupont)

Fee: $75 (advance registration required - please phone or email for payment options)
Includes materials and light refreshments.
Enrolment limited to 12 participants.

Poet, editor and writing instructor Stuart Ross offers an intensive one-day workshop for beginning poets, experienced poets, stalled poets, and haikuists who want to get beyond three lines. Poetry Boot Camp focuses on the pleasures of poetry and the riches that spontaneity brings, through lively directed exercises and relevant readings from the works of poets from Canada and abroad. Stuart also touches on revision, collaboration, and publication. Arrive with an open mind, and leave with a heap of new poems and writing strategies!

Stuart Ross is the author of five full-length poetry collections, including the acclaimed I Cut My Finger (Anvil, 2007) and Hey, Crumbling Balcony! Poems New & Selected (ECW, 2003). He is the editor of Surreal Estate: 13 Canadian Poets Under the Influence (Mercury, 2004). His other books include Confessions Of A Small Press Racketeer (Anvil, 2005) and Henry Kafka & Other Stories (Mercury, 1996). In spring 2007, DC Books will launch its new Punchy Poetry imprint with Stuart's collection Dead Cars In Managua.

Stuart has been active in the Canadian poetry scene for more than 30 years. He is the co-founder and three-time coordinator of the Toronto Small Press Book Fair and has appeared at festivals across the country, including Bookfest Windsor, the Ottawa International Writers Festival, Banff-Calgary WordFest, Vancouver Jewish Book Fair, Words in Whitby, Ashkenaz Festival of Yiddish Culture, and MayWorks.

Stuart is the Fiction & Poetry Editor for This Magazine, and associate editor for Mansfield Press. He has taught writing to adults and teens for over a decade, and was the 2005 writer in residence for the Writers' Circle of Durham Region. Visit his online home at www.hunkamooga.com.

Over and out.


At November 19, 2007 1:46 pm , Blogger Spring Melody Warren said...

Wow, this sounds great Stuart! If only I weren't on the other side of that curtain. I was glad to hear from you on my blog, send me your e-mail and we can keep in touch. I am enjoying your book over and over again. You are such an amazing word smith. Best, Spring


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