Category Archives: Uncategorized

June 27: George Murray, Meaghan Strimas, Gillian Wigmore, and Julie Wilson

Pivot blasts off into summer with a quick-cut reading extravaganza: in other words, 3 hot girls and George Murray! Come out and hear two poets read poems, one poet read from her novel-in-progress, and one literary voyeur cut you in on her Peeping Julie escapades. Pivot Host Elisabeth de Mariaffi is about to blast off into a new Atlantic life on the island of Newfoundland, so come out and have a drink and say goodbye, while we’re at it.

George Murray’s six books of poetry include Whiteout (ECW, 2012), Glimpse: Selected Aphorisms (ECW, 2010), The Rush to Here (Nightwood, 2007),The Hunter (McClelland & Stewart, 2003). He has been widely anthologized and has published poems and fiction in journals and magazines in Canada, the United States, Australia, and Europe. He has won or been shortlisted for several awards, and he has been on the part time faculty at University of Toronto, New School University, and Humber College. He lives in St. John’s, Newfoundland. From 2003 to 2011, he was the editor and operator of the popular literary website Bookninja.com, but he is most famously Pivot host Elisabeth’s new boyfriend. You can find him at http://georgemurray.wordpress.com/.

Meaghan Strimas  is the editor of The Selected Gwendolyn MacEwen, and the author of two collections of poetry, Junkman’s Daughter and A Good Time Had By All (all Exile Editions). At work on a new poetry book, and a novel, Strimas lives, works, and writes in Toronto.

GIllian Wigmore is the author of two books of poems: soft geography (Caitlin Press, 2007), which won the 2008 ReLit Award, and Dirt of Ages (Nightwood, 2012). Her poems and non-fiction have appeared in journals and anthologies and been nominated and short-listed for many awards including the Dorothy Livesay BC Book Prize for Poetry and the Great BC Novel Prize. She lives in north-central BC and has fewer farm animals than you would assume.

Julie Wilson is The Book Madam, a self-professed “professional publishing fan” living and working in Toronto. She’s the past Online Marketing Manager for House of Anansi Press and recent Host of the CBC Book Club. She thinks reading looks good on you.
Seen Reading has been featured in/on or at The Toronto Star, The Globe and Mail, CBC and as part of a guerrilla media campaign that resulted in 100 transit readers receiving a Kobo e-reader just for reading in public.
Follow Julie on Twitter: @BookMadam and @SeenReading. Post your own reader sightings using the hashtag #seenreading.
Julie’s website: www.seenreading.com


Pivot Readings at the Press Club
Featuring George Murray, Meaghan Strimas, Gillian Wigmore, and Julie Wilson
Wednesday, June 27
8 PM
850 Dundas Street West
PWYC
Hosted by Elisabeth de Mariaffi

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June 13: Tamara Faith Berger, Alessandro Porco, Moez Surani

Get your hot self down to the Press Club on June 13, when three blazing writers – Tamara Faith Berger (Maidenhead), Alessandro Porco (The Minutes I-X) and Moez Surani (Floating Life). Sachiko Murakami hosts – and may just bring her water spritzer to combat the sparks that will be a-flying!

Tamara Faith Berger was born in Toronto. She wrote porn stories for a living and attempted to make dirty films before publishing her first book, Lie with Me, in 1999. In 2001, The Way of the Whore, her second book, was published. In 2004, Lie with Me was made into a film. Maidenhead, recently released from Coach House, is her third book. Berger is presently working on a novel about a Russian hired killer. She is a graduate student at UBC working on her Masters of Fine Arts.

Alessandro Porco is the author of two collections of poetry, The Jill Kelly Poems (2005) and Augustine in Carthage (2008), both published by ECW Press. BookThug recently published a chapbook of poems, The Minutes: I-X (2011). And ECW will publish The Minutes: I-XL, just as soon as he’s finished writing it. He holds a Ph.D. from the State University of New York at Buffalo and is currently employed as a Visiting Assistant Professor in upstate New York, in the shadow of the Adirondacks.

Moez Surani is a poet, reviewer and short fiction author. His writing has been included in numerous anthologies and literary journals, including The Literary Review of Canada and The Walrus. He has attended writing residencies in Finland, Latvia and Switzerland, and his writing has won the Chalmers Arts Fellowship, the Kingston Literary Award and the Antigonish Review’s Great Blue Heron Poetry Contest. He has published two poetry collections: Reticent Bodies (2009) and Floating Life (2012), both with Wolsak and Wynn.

Pivot Readings at the Press Club
Featuring Tamara Faith Berger, Alessandro Porco, and Moez Surani
Wednesday, June 13
The Press Club (850 Dundas Street West)
8 PM
PWYC ($5 suggested donation)
Hosted by Sachiko Murakami

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May 30: Sarah Goldstein, Joshua Harmon, Jamie Popowich

Pivot fans, get in the receiving line! On May 30 we welcome two far-flung visitors, Massachusetts-based writers Sarah Goldstein and Joshua Harmon. We also welcome Jamie Popowich, Metraville’s ambassador to Toronto. Come represent Toronto as we strengthen our international literary relations.

Sarah Goldstein was born in Toronto and now lives in Massachusetts. Her writing has appeared in Bateau, Barrow Street, Caketrain, and Denver Quarterly, and is forthcoming in the online journal Anti-. Her first book, Fables, was released in 2011 from Tarpaulin Sky. Originally trained as an artist, she has exhibited her artwork in the US and Canada.

Joshua Harmon is the author of two books of poems-Le Spleen de Poughkeepsie and Scape-and a novel, Quinnehtukqut. His fiction, poetry, and nonfiction have appeared in journals such as Agni, The Believer, Colorado Review, New England Review, The Normal School, TriQuarterly, and Verse, and he has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts. He lives in western Massachusetts.

Jamie Popowich is the author of the short fiction collection Metraville (Insomniac Press). Popowich has also produced the documentary Run Run It’s Him.

In Metraville, Popowich creates an absurd and delightful”fake-believe” city. In a recent review, Broken Pencil says: Popowich pulls together an engaging world with an often playful twist. But Metraville is no mere confection piece: underneath all the fun lies some biting social criticism and big questions. By the time we meet the accused thief, his lawyer and the presiding judge who inhabit the centre of the book, we’re shown that for all its absurdities, Metraville is also addressing Toronto’s uncertain fate: “Because whose fault is all this really? And by ‘all this,’ I mean your own befuddled life.”

Pivot Readings at the Press Club
Featuring Sarah Goldstein, Joshua Harmon, and Jamie Popowich
Wednesday, May 30
The Press Club
850 Dundas Street West
8 PM
PWYC
Hosted by Elisabeth de Mariaffi

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May 16: Eric Foley, Nicole Markotić, Natalie Zina Walschots

Come greet  fictioneer Eric Foley, Windsor’s Nicole Markotić, and local hero Natalie Zina Walschots Something tells me that the Press Club back patio will be in full effect this coming Pivot, so be sure to come early and stay late to save a seat inside – and outside!

Eric Foley has been a finalist for the Random House Creative Writing Award and the Hart House Literary Contest, and the winner of Geist Magazine and the White Wall Review’s postcard story contests. Some of his work can be found online at Numero Cinq and InluencySalon.ca. Eric has traveled to over thirty countries on six continents, and currently attends the University of Guelph’s MFA Program in Creative Writing, where he is at work on his first novel, and a memoir about living in Morocco.

Nicole Markotić is a fiction writer and poet. Her latest book, Bent at the Spine Her first novel, Yellow Pages: a Catalogue of Intentions, was a prose narrative about Alexander Graham Bell. She has also published two books of poetry, Connect the Dots and Minotaurs and Other Alphabets and a chapbook, more excess, which won the bpNichol Poetry Chapbook Award. A former resident of Calgary, she now teaches English Literature and creative writing at the University of Windsor. Dr. Markotić specializes in the subjects of Canadian Literature, Poetry, Children’s Literature, Disability in Film and Disability in Literature and she wrote a critical book on disability in film. She is also the Managing Editor of the chapbook series, Wrinkle Press.

Natalie Zina Walschots is a poet and music journalist. Her first book of poetry, Thumbscrews (2007), won the inaugural Robert Kroetsch Award for Innovative Poetry. Her second, Doom: Love Poems for Supervillains, is just out with Insomniac Press. She holds an M.A. in English and Creative Writing from the University of Calgary and her poetry has appeared widely in literary magazines. She currently serves as the managing editor for Canada Arts Connect and the reviews editor for This Magazine. Her secret lair is located in Toronto. Visit her at www.nataliezed.ca.

Pivot Readings at the Press Club
Featuring Eric Foley, Nicole Markotic, and Natalie Zina Walschots
Wednesday, May 16
8 PM
The Press Club
850 Dundas Street West
PWYC.

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May 2: Gabe Foreman, Catherine Owen, Steven Price, and Claire Tacon

Three poets and a novelist walk into a bar…

Punchline to follow on May 2, as Pivot welcomes Gabe Foreman, Catherine Owen, Steven Price, and Claire Tacon to the Press Club for a night of spring revelry and literary madness. Or literary goodness. Anyway, there’ll be some revelry, and some literature, and it’s a bar. You’re coming, right?

Gabe Foreman was born in Thunder Bay. He has worked as a tree planter in British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario, and is the author of one collection of poetry, A Complete Encyclopedia of Different Types of People (Coach House Books, 2011). He’s a co-founder of littlefishcartpress, and his writing has appeared in a number of literary journals, including Grain, Fiddlehead and Event. His work placed second in CV2’s two-day poem contest and a selection was shortlisted for the CBC Literary Awards. Currently, he lives in Montreal, where he manages the soup kitchen at a long-established mission.

Catherine Owen is from Vancouver. She’s published nine collections of poetry as well as the new Catalysts (Wolsak and Wynn, 2012), a collection of prose, essays, and memoirs. Her work has won the Alberta Book Prize and been nominated for the BC Book Prize, the CBC Award and the Re-lit. She plays metal bass and collaborates with multimedia artists, including Sydney Lancaster who created the cover of Catalysts, the book she will be reading from at Pivot. P.S. Her website is www.catherineowen.org.

Steven Price‘s newest collection of poetry is Omens in the Year of the Ox (Brick Books, 2012). His first collection, Anatomy of Keys (Brick Books, 2006), won the Gerald Lampert Award and was named a Globe & Mail Book of the Year. His first novel, Into that Darkness (Thomas Allen, 2011), has recently been nominated for the Ethel Wilson Award. His work has been translated into several languages, including German, French, and Hungarian. He teaches writing at the University of Victoria.

Claire Tacon is the winner of the 2010 Metcalf-Rooke award for her first novel, In the Field (Biblioasis, 2010). Her fiction has been short-listed for the Bronwen Wallace Award and the Playboy College Fiction Contest, and has appeared in journals such as The New Quarterly and sub-TERRAIN. She is a past fiction editor of the magazine PRISM international and is a lecturer at St. Jerome’s University.


Pivot Readings at the Press Club
Featuring Gabe Foreman, Catherine Owen, Steven Price, and Claire Tacon
Wednesday, May 2
8 PM
850 Dundas Street West
PWYC
Hosted by Elisabeth de Mariaffi

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April 18: Marianne Apostolides, Gregory Betts, Margaret Christakos

When we read we begin with A B C – When we read at Pivot we begin with Marianne Apostolides, Gregory Betts, and Margaret Christakos (see what we did there?)! What else do our readers have in common besides their place in the alphabet, you might be wondering? All three have recent books with one of Pivot’s favourite small presses, BookThug. Come smack literature around with our Thugs and your host, Sachiko Murakami.

Marianne Apostolides is the author of four books, including Voluptuous Pleasure: The Truth about the Writing Life (BookThug 2012) and The Lucky Child: A Novel (Mansfield Press 2010), which was long-listed for a ReLit Award.  She is a recipient of the 2011 Chalmers Arts Fellowship.

Gregory Betts is the author of five books of poetry, including The Obvious Flap (BookThug 2011), co-written by Gary Barwin, and The Others Raisd in Me (Pedlar 2009), a finalist for the Re-Lit Award. His writing has appeared in hundreds of magazines, journals, anthologies, and chapbooks, and has been taught in schools and universities throughout Canada, the United States, and in many European nations. His history of early Canadian avant-garde activity will be published by the University of Toronto Press in fall 2012. He lives in St. Catharines and teaches at Brock University.

Margaret Christakos is the author of a Trillium-nominated novel and 8 collections of innovative poetry, most recently Welling (Your Scrivener, 2010, a Globe 100 Book) and What Stirs (Coach House Books, 2008, shortlisted for the Pat Lowther Memorial Award). Some of her other books include Sooner (Coach House, 2005, also nominated for the Lowther) and Excessive Love Prostheses (Coach House, 2002, winner of the ReLit Award). Her work is widely anthologized and she has supported many emerging writers and given seminars and readings across Canada and in the United States since the publication of her first book in 1989. Born and raised in Sudbury, ON, she has three teenaged children and lives in Toronto. She’ll read from her new BookThug chapbook, The Chips & Ties Study, from Tumultetudes.

Pivot Readings at the Press Club
Featuring Marianne Apostolides, Gregory Betts, and Stephen Cain
Wednesday, April 18
8 PM
The Press Club
850 Dundas Street West
Hosted by Sachiko Murakami
PWYC.

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April 4: Julie Cameron Gray, Grace O’Connell, and Matthew Tierney

April showers? Put down those umbrellas and put back a spring cocktail of all new work as Pivot brings you first-time novelist Grace O’Connell, and helps The Emergency Response Unit launch new poetry chapbooks by Julie Cameron Gray and Matthew Tierney.

Julie Cameron Gray has published poems in Carousel, Lichen, The Windsor Review, Queens Quarterly, The Amethyst Review and a chapbook with Cactus Press (2006), entitled The Distance Between Two Bodies. Her first full-length book of poetry will be released by Tightrope Books in Spring 2013. She is a contributing editor for Misunderstandings Magazine, and is originally from Sudbury, Ontario.

Grace O’Connell is the Contributing Editor for Open Book Toronto. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing, and her work has appeared in publications including The Walrus, Taddle Creek and EYE Weekly. Her first novel, Magnified World, is forthcoming in May 2012 as part of Random House Canada’s New Face of Fiction program.

Matthew Tierney is the author of two collections of poetry, most recently The Hayflick Limit (Coach House Books), which was shortlisted for a Trillium Book Award. His next book, titled Probably Inevitable, considers the science and philosophy of time. It will come out Fall 2012. He lives in Toronto.

Pivot Readings at the Press Club
Featuring Julie Cameron Gray, Grace O’Connell, and Matthew Tierney
Wednesday, April 4
8 PM
850 Dundas Street West
PWYC
Hosted by Elisabeth de Mariaffi

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