Pivot on February 24th: Jeff Blackman, Hoa Nguyen, Patrick Warner & Zachariah Wells

We’re in the thick of it now, just the last few shows before the annual spring floodgates of new books open up. And we have a really incredible show, with three poets and a poet-slash-fictionaut. Folks from Newfoundland and Ottawa and Halifax. The great Hoa Nguyen. Worth coming out for on a winter night, I’d say.

Cast List

Jeff Blackman’s poetry has appeared in periodicals such as Blacklock’s Reporter, In/Words, and the Steel Chisel, the anthology Five (Apt. 9 Press), and Best Canadian Poetry in English 2015 (Tightrope Books). He keeps warm in Ottawa, Ontario, with his growing family.

Born in the Mekong Delta and raised in the DC area, Hoa Nguyen studied Poetics at New College of California in San Francisco. She is the author of eight books and chapbooks including her early selected, Red Juice published by Wave Books. With the poet Dale Smith, Nguyen founded Skanky Possum, a small press journal of poetry and poetics. She currently lives in Toronto, where she curates a reading series and teaches poetics privately and at Ryerson University. In the fall, Wave is publishing her next collection, titled Violet Energy Ingots.

Patrick Warner was born in Claremorris, Co. Mayo, Ireland in 1963. He has published four collections of poetry: All Manner of Misunderstanding (Killick Press, 2001), There, there (Signal Editions, 2005), Mole (House of Anansi Press, 2009), and Perfection (Goose Lane/Ice House, 2012). He has also published two novels: Double Talk (Breakwater, 2011) and One Hit Wonders (Breakwater, 2015). He is the rare books and special collections librarian for Memorial University Libraries.

Zachariah Wells is the author of several books, most recently the essay collection Career Limiting Moves and the poetry title Sum. Originally from PEI, he has hung his hat on all three coasts and several points in between. He now lives with his wife, writer Rachel Lebowitz, and their son in Halifax, from whence he rides the rails to Montreal aboard Via Rail’s “Ocean” train.

Pivot Readings at The Steady Cafe
Featuring Jeff Blackman, Hoa Nguyen, Patrick Warner, and Zachariah Wells
Wednesday, February 24th
8 PM
1051 Bloor St West
PWYC (Suggested: $5)
Hosted by Jacob McArthur Mooney

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Pivot on February 10th:Madhur Anand, Trevor Cole, Lana Pesch, and Kim Trainor

Pivot is experimenting a bit with spacing out our winter shows in the interest of season-avoidance. So, the next Pivot is happening three weeks after the last one, instead of the usual two. Hopefully this will not result in a bunch of sad Pivoteers piling into the Steady on Feb 3rd and seeing no poems nor stories.

Cast List:

Madhur Anand’s acclaimed debut collection of poems is A New Index for Predicting Catastrophes (McClelland & Stewart/Penguin Random House Canada, April 2015). Her work has recently appeared or is forthcoming in The Rusty Toque and The Walrus. She is a professor in the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of Guelph.

Trevor Cole’s first two books — Norman Bray in the Performance of His Life and The Fearsome Particles — were both short-listed for the Governor General’s Literary Award and long-listed for the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. His third novel, Practical Jean, was nominated for the Rogers’ Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize and won the Leacock Medal for Humour. Trevor’s latest novel, Hope Makes Love, has been called soulful, harrowing, graceful and full of life. He lives in Toronto.

Lana Pesch is a Saskatchewan born, Toronto-based writer and producer. Her debut short story collection, Moving Parts, was published in October 2015 by Arsenal Pulp Press. Lana’s writing has appeared in Elle Canada, Taddle Creek, 49th Shelf, and Little Bird Stories: Volumes I and II. She was long-listed for the 2014 CBC Short Story Prize, and won the Random House of Canada Creative Writing Award at the University of Toronto in 2012.

Over the years Kim Trainor has worked at a campus radio station, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, a biomedical library, and is currently a sessional lecturer at UBC. Her poetry has won the Gustafson Prize and the Malahat Review Long Poem Prize, and has appeared in the 2013 Global Poetry Anthology and The Best Canadian Poetry in English 2014. She lives in Vancouver. (tw: violence)

Pivot Readings at The Steady Cafe
Featuring Madhur Anand, Trevor Cole, Lana Pesch, and Kim Trainor
Wednesday, February 10th
8 PM
1051 Bloor St West
PWYC (Suggested: $5)
Hosted by Jacob McArthur Mooney

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PIVOTcast for January 4th: McCormack, McGuire & Munro

We’re pleased to again partner with our friends at The Scope to offer PIVOTcast. This time around, we have a recording of our January 4th Season Opener featuring work from, in order: Derek McCormack, Andy McGuire, and Jane Munro.

PIVOTcast Episode 2 was produced by Emily Joveski.

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Pivot on January 20th: Jean Marc Ah-Sen, James Lindsay, and Carolyn Smart

Pivot keeps moving unafraid into what we are told is the winter. We have three great readers on the twentieth, with debuting novelist Jean Marc Ah-Sen and debuting poet James Lindsay joined by the much-loved poet and professor Carolyn Smart.

Cast List:

Jean Marc Ah-Sen is the Toronto-based author of Grand Menteur, a novel about Mauritian street-gangs that the Globe and Mail included in their top 100 books of 2015 and which the National Post hailed as an “inventive escape from the conventional.” He is working on a second novel called The Lost Norman. (tw: violence, racial slurs)

James Lindsay has been a bookseller for more than a decade. He is also co-owner of Pleasence Records in Toronto, a record label specializing in post-punk, odd-pop and avant-garde sound pieces. His debut collection of poems, Our Inland Sea came out this fall from Wolsak & Wynn.

Carolyn Smart has written seven collections of poetry including Careen, Hooked, and The Way to Come Home. She is the founder of the Bronwen Wallace Award for Emerging Writers, poetry editor for McGill-Queen’s Press, and since 1989 has taught Creative Writing at Queen’s University. (tw: violence)

Pivot Readings at The Steady Cafe
Featuring Jean Marc Ah-Sen, James Lindsay, and Carolyn Smart.
Wednesday, January 20th
8 PM
1051 Bloor St West
PWYC (Suggested: $5)
Hosted by Jacob McArthur Mooney

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PIVOTcast for December 2nd: Farah,Clarke & Ball

Pivot’s experiment in podcasting is now live. Thanks to our friends at The Scope @ Ryerson U, and especially to Emily Joveski who acts as producer for what we are calling The PIVOTcast.

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Pivot’s Year Opener on January 6th: Derek McCormack, Andy McGuire & Jane Munro

Pivot hopes you had a fun and relaxing whatevers with your friends and maybe family. But time moves forward, and soon it’ll be January and time to start up again for the winter. The traditions of Great Big Pivots to kick off the season continue with local hero Derek McCormack, debuting Coach House poet Andy McGuire, and reigning (reigning? I’m going to say “reigning”, I like how it sounds…) Griffin laureate Jane Munro.

Cast List

Derek McCormack is a writer who lives in Toronto. His books include The Show that Smells, Grab Bag, The Haunted Hillbilly, and most recently The Well-Dressed Wound, out last year from Semiotext(e). (TWs: Sexual violence, illness)

Andy McGuire is from Grand Bend and currently resides in Toronto. He is pursuing an MFA in creative writing from the University of Guelph. McGuire’s poems have appeared in Riddle Fence, Hazlitt and The Walrus. His first collection, Country Club, came out in the fall from Coach House.

Jane Munro’s previous books include Active Pass (Pedlar Press, 2010), Point No Point (McClelland & Stewart, 2006) and Grief Notes & Animal Dreams (Brick Books, 1995). Her work has received the Bliss Carman Poetry Award, the Macmillan Prize for Poetry, been nominated for the Pat Lowther Award, and is included in The Best Canadian Poetry 2013. She is a member of the collaborative group Yoko’s Dogs  whose first book, Whisk, was published by Pedlar Press in 2013. Her most recent collection, Blue Sonoma (Brick), won the 2015 Griffin Prize for Canadian Poetry. (TWs: Illness-Alzheimer’s/Dementia)

Pivot Readings at The Steady Cafe
Featuring Derek McCormack, Andy McGuire, and Jane Munro
Wednesday, January 6th
8 PM
1051 Bloor St West
PWYC (Suggested: $5)
Hosted by Jacob McArthur Mooney

 

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Pivot on December 2nd: Jonathan Ball, Laura Clarke, and Amina Farah

After seventeen shows and fifty-eight readings, Pivot closes down its 2015 with a trio of writers emerging and established, local and visiting. We have Manitoban trickster figure Jonathan Ball, Torontonian prose writer Amina Farah, and debuting ex-Bronwen Wallace winner Laura Clarke. Last chance to Pivot until after the holidays.

Cast List:

Jonathan Ball holds a Ph.D. in English and teaches literature, film, and writing at the University of Manitoba and the University of Winnipeg. He is the author of the poetry books Ex Machina, Clockfire, and The Politics of Knives, and the co-editor of Why Poetry Sucks: An Anthology of Humorous Experimental Poetry. Visit him online at JonathanBall.com, where he writes about writing the wrong way.

Laura Clarke is the author of Decline of the Animal Kingdom (ECW, 2015). You can find her poetry, criticism and other writing in publications like The National Post, PRISM International, Riddle Fence, Grain and The Puritan. She is the 2013 winner of the Bronwen Wallace Award for Emerging Writers from the Writers’ Trust of Canada. She’s from Hamilton and now lives in Toronto.

Amina Farah is a Somali-Canadian writer who has roots in Nairobi, Vancouver and now calls Toronto home. She has worked as a youth worker and educator in communities across Canada, participated in Diaspora Dialogues Emerging Writers Program, and completed a MFA in creative writing at the University of Guelph.

Pivot Readings at The Steady Cafe
Featuring Jonathan Ball, Laura Clarke, and Amina Farah.
Wednesday, December 2nd
8 PM
1051 Bloor St West
PWYC (Suggested: $5)
Hosted by Jacob McArthur Mooney

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