Thursday, July 28, 2011

National Blog Posting Month (August 2011)

I just signed up for next month's National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo) -- now I have to come up with 31 daily blog posts!

The August 2011 theme is "fiction." Should be a slam dunk, right? I write fiction. I edit fiction. I publish fiction. And they're looking for quantity, not quality. I like to think I can provide both, but I know there will be days when I'll be lucky to post a link to one of my other blogs or to someone else's content.

In an effort to avoid those dreg days, I'm asking all of you to send me your ideas for fiction-related content. What do you want me to write about? Are you interested in reading excerpts from some of my stories or publications? Post a comment or sent me a message.

Are you new to blogging or looking to kickstart an existing blog? Give NaBloPoMo a try. Even if you don't manage to post every day, you'll stretch yourself and grow your content. And you'll promote your blog to potential new readers along the way.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Winners of CAA Literary Awards Revealed

Yesterday, the Canadian Authors Association announced the winners of their annual literary awards, including Nova Scotia resident Julia McCarthy.

I've singled out Julia because I'm reviewing her book and interviewing her for this blog. I arranged both when she was named as a finalist, and I'm thrilled that she's come up a winner. Stay tuned for both review and interview in the near future.

I also want to send congratulations to all the winners. You're doing Canadian writers proud!

MEDIA RELEASE from the Canadian Authors Association:

July 24, 2011 - Last night the Canadian Authors Association (CAA) continued its long-held tradition of writers honouring writers and announced the winners of its 2011 Literary Awards competition at the Leacock Summer Festival in Orillia, Ontario.

Shelagh D. Grant was awarded the Lela Common Award for Canadian History for Polar Imperative: A History of Arctic Sovereignty in North America (Douglas & McIntyre). An adjunct professor and research associate at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario, Grant received a silver medal and $2000 cash prize. The shortlist for this award included Ross King (Defiant Spirits: The Modernist Revolution of the Group of Seven) and co-authors Stuart Houston and Bill Waiser (Tommy's Team: The People Behind the Douglas Years).

Tom Rachman was named the recipient of the CAA Award for Fiction for his debut novel The Imperfectionists (Dial Press). A resident of London, England, Rachman will also receive a silver medal and $2000 prize. This year's fiction shortlist included television and film writer, producer and actor Ken Finkleman (Noah's Turn) and multiple award-winning sci-fi author Robert J. Sawyer (Watch).

Julia McCarthy won the CAA Poetry Award for Return from Erebus (Brick Books). A resident of Upper Kennetcook, Nova Scotia, McCarthy receives a silver medal and $1000 prize. The 2011 poetry shortlist also included acclaimed poet, teacher and horse rancher Garry Gottfriedson (Skin Like Mine) and multiple award-winning poet and novelist Don Coles.

Titilope Sonuga was named the 2011 Emerging Writer for her collection of poems called Down to Earth. Sonuga is a Nigerian-born spoken word poet based in Edmonton who plays an active role in the local and regional poetry community. Currently completing an artist residence in Cape Town, South Africa, she receives a $500 cash prize.

The awards finalists were announced by CAA National President Matthew Bin at the association's annual literary awards dinner, held this year in Swanmore Terrace at the Leacock Museum National Historic Site. "It is a privilege to present the awards at the Leacock Summer Festival," said Bin. "What better way is there to celebrate our 90th anniversary than at a literary festival named in honour one of the association's founders."

During the evening, keynote speaker and renowned playwright and novelist Tomson Highway regaled the audience with a lively and anecdote-filled address on the beauty, rhythm and magic of the Cree language and on his lifelong dedication to using the language as a means of conserving the wisdom and lessons of the past to be shared with generations to come.

Introduced in 1975, the CAA Literary Awards honour Canadian writers who achieve excellence without sacrificing popular appeal - a  tradition originally begun in 1937 with the creation of the Governor General's medals for literature (now overseen by the Canada Council of the Arts). The competition is open to all writers who are Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada. This event marks the first time the awards have been held during the Leacock Summer Festival.

Founded by Stephen Leacock and several other prominent Canadian writers in 1921, the Canadian Authors Association has continued to maintain a focus on "writers helping writers" since its inception.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Travel Up the Amazon(.com)

After cutting my POD teeth on Lulu Press in 2007 -- Has it really been that long? -- I finally started making the move over to CreateSpace last summer. As a result, five paperbacks are now available at, along with two Kindle editions produced through Amazon's Digital Text Platform.

The August Gale
Baby Angels
Backless, Strapless & Slit To The Throat
A Boy Named Wish
The Communal Desk
Holiday Writes
Paper Wings

You can also find them all in one location by following this link or by searching "inkspotter" from any page.

InkSpotter Publishing's paperback titles are all still listed on Lulu, where they're gradually creating ebook versions for iTunes. But CreateSpace gives me the distinct advantage of getting listed on automatically. I haven't ventured into additional distribution channels yet, but I'm sure that will come soon enough.

In the meantime, why not get some of your summer reading from InkSpotter Publishing? Now you can have them delivered with FREE Super Saver Shipping.