Monday, July 6, 2020

“Nana Loves to Eat Strawberries” by Lisa Reynolds



Nana Loves to Eat Strawberries
She slips out at dawn
In her nightdress
Leaves foot prints
In dew rich grass
Towards a trellis
Covered in vines
While I watch
From a window
As she plucks
A red shaped heart
And brings it to her lips


Lisa Reynolds is a writer, living in Durham Region, Ontario, Canada. She writes poetry and short stories about observations that bring joy.
“Nana Loves to Eat Strawberries” was previously published on The Wild Word. For information about submitting to The Wild Word, see here.

See Brian Henry's schedule hereincluding writing workshops, weekly online writing classes, and weekend retreats in Alliston, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Collingwood, Georgetown, Georgina, Guelph, Hamilton, Jackson’s Point, Kingston, Kitchener-Waterloo, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Southampton, Sudbury, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.

Sunday, July 5, 2020

Post-lockdown schedule for writing workshops and retreats continues to grow

Southampton, Ontario, lighthouse

Due to the pandemic, I’ve rescheduled all the Saturday writing workshops that were set to go in April, May, and June, and I had to reshuffle most of the July schedule, too. Here's what the new schedule looks like:

July and August
Algonquin Park Writing RetreatJoin me for a magical weekend at Arowhon Pines Resort, an outpost of luxury in the middle of the wilderness,  for a writing retreat. Two sessions: Thursday, July 9  – Sunday, July 12. (see here) and  Friday, Aug 28 – Monday, Aug 31 (see  here).
Burlington: Raising the Stakes: How to increase your story's tension, Saturday, July 18. Details here.
Southampton Art School: Join me at the height of summer in this lovely beach town on Lake Huron for two workshops: How to Build Your Story, Saturday, July 25. Details here.
and How to Write Great Characters, Sunday, July 26. Details here.

Downtown Collingwood, Ontario
Oakville: "You can write great dialogue," Saturday, Aug 8. Details here.  
Collingwood: "You can write great dialogue,"  Saturday, Aug 15.  Details here.
St. Catharines: How to Make Yourself Write,"  Saturday, Aug 22.  Details here.

September

Mississauga: Writing for Children and for Young Adults with Anne Shone, Executive Editor, Scholastic Books, Saturday, September 12. Details here.


October
Toronto: How to Get Published with Evan Brown of Transatlantic Literary Agency, Saturday, Oct 3. Details here.
Guelph: How to Get Published with literary agent Paige Sisley of CookeMcDermid, Saturday, Oct 24. Details here.
London: How to Write Great CharactersSaturday, Oct 31. Treats for everyone in costume.  Details here.

November
Jackson's Point: Writing Retreat at the Briar's Resort on Lake Simcoe, Friday, Nov 13  Monday, Nov 16. Savwe the date - details to come.

See Brian’s complete current schedule hereincluding writing workshops, weekly writing classes, and weekend retreats in, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Collingwood, Georgetown, Georgina, Guelph, Hamilton, Jackson’s Point, Kingston, Kitchener-Waterloo, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Southampton, Sudbury, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.

Friday, July 3, 2020

Green Ghost, Blue Ocean by Jenifer M. Smith – Available now!



After suffering stormy seas en route to publication, Green Ghost, Blue Ocean is now available! Yay, Jennifer!
Green Ghost, Blue Ocean is a travel memoir about a 40,000 nautical mile adventure that spans seventeen years. Early in their careers, Jennifer and her husband Nik come to realize that the rewards in the corporate world will always be the same—more money to buy more things, but never time off for self-discovery. When they begin to imagine a life outside the norm, they seize on the idea of long-distance sailing as the perfect way to journey down a road less travelled.
Green Ghost, Blue Ocean is a story about taking time and taking a risk, about unwittingly losing your identity while simultaneously redefining yourself in ways never imagined. It is a story about the importance of starting and the acceptance of an imperfect plan. It is a tale of the triumph of conviction: if you believe that you'll figure it out when you get there, it’s amazing how far you can go.
Order your copy from your favourite book store or directly from the distributor, Nimbus publishing, here.
Note:In 2019, Jennifer’s manuscript for Green Ghost, Blue Ocean won the Pottersfield Prize for Creative Nonfiction prize. For more on the prize, see here.


See Brian Henry's schedule hereincluding writing workshops, weekly online writing classes, and weekend retreats in Alliston, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Collingwood, Georgetown, Georgina, Guelph, Hamilton, Jackson’s Point, Kingston, Kitchener-Waterloo, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Southampton, Sudbury, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.

Thursday, July 2, 2020

A ninth agent at Canadian-based Transatlantic Literary is looking for authors

From the Ashes by Jesse Thistle
represented by Transatlantic
Transatlantic Agency
2 Bloor Street East
Suite 3500
Toronto, Ontario, Canada 

Note: Don't ever miss a post on Quick Brown Fox. Fill in your email in the Follow Brian by Email box to the right under my bio, and get each post delivered to your Inbox. If you’re not yet on my newsletter list, send me an email, including your locale to:  brianhenry@sympatico.ca ~Brian

Chelene Knight has just joined Transatlantic Literary as an Associate Agent and is actively building a list of fiction writers and memoirists.
Chelene has worked on the editorial side of publishing and in the magazine industry for years. She is the author of the poetry collection Braided Skin and the memoir Dear Current Occupant, winner of the 2018 Vancouver Book Award and long-listed for the George Ryga Award for Social Awareness in Literature. Her essays have appeared in multiple Canadian and American literary journals, plus the Globe and Mail, the Walrus, and the Toronto Star. Her work is anthologized in Making RoomLove Me TrueSustenanceThe Summer Book, and Black Writers Matter, winner of the 2020 Saskatchewan Book award.
Chelene has worked as a substantive editor for manuscripts in literary fiction, historical fiction, hybrid and traditional memoir, and most recently, children’s books. She has juried for many literary prizes, including the Amazon First Novel Award. She’s also been on many arts boards’ granting juries, including the Canada Council for the Arts, and participated in numerous literary festivals across Canada.
Chelene was the previous managing editor at Room magazine and festival director for the Growing Room Literary Festival in Vancouver. She is now founder and CEO of Breathing Space Creative Literary Management. She often gives talks about home, belonging and belief, inclusivity, and community building through authentic storytelling. She teaches poetry at the University of Toronto online.
Chelene is primarily interested in literary fiction and memoir. For fiction, she is drawn to character-driven narratives with rich language that push boundaries (think Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye). She also looks for books that encourage the setting to be a living character (think Amber Dawn’s Sub Rosa).
For memoir, beyond a compelling story, she needs an unconventional structure that amplifies the narrator’s experiences and contributes to the reflective voice in a unique way (think Lidia Yuknavitch’s Chronology of Water).
“I have a soft spot for gritty stories where human nature, resilience, and experience take centre stage,” says Chelene. “The ‘grit’ lends its qualities to books where the story and its characters have some of the roughness, imperfection and complexity of the real world.”
She especially encourages BIPOC writers to submit.
Please include a 20-page sample of your work.

Eight other agents at Transatlantic are also looking for authors. See here and here.

Evan Brown
If you’re interested in meeting an agent and in getting published, don’t miss our upcoming  How to Get Published  workshops Saturday, Oct 3, in Toronto with Evan Brown of Transatlantic Literary Agency (see here) and Saturday, Oct 24, in Guelph with Paige Sisley of the CookeMcdermid agency  (see here).

In the meanwhile, the best way of upping your game as a writer may be with a weekly course. This summer, Brian’s offering several courses online and accessible everywhere:
Online:  Writing Personal Stories, Tuesday evenings, July 7 – Aug 18. Details here.                          
Online: Welcome to Creative Writing, Wednesday afternoons, July 8 – Aug 19. Details here
Online: Intensive Creative Writing, Tuesday afternoons, July 7 – Aug 25 and Wednesday evenings, July 8 – Aug 26. Details here. – Both Intensive classes are currently full, waiting list only. 

Beyond that, Brian’s post-lockdown workshop schedule continues to take shape:

Diving tower at Arowhon Pines in Algonquin Park
July and August
Algonquin Park Writing RetreatsJoin me for a magical weekend at Arowhon Pines Resort, an outpost of luxury in the middle of the wilderness,  for a writing retreat. Two sessions: Thursday, July 9  – Sunday, July 12 (see here) and Friday, Aug 28 – Monday, Aug 31 (see here).
Burlington: Raising the Stakes: How to increase your story's tension, Saturday, July 18. Details here.
Southampton Art School: Head out to this lovely beach town on Lake Huron for two workshops: How to Build Your Story, Saturday, July 25 (see here) and  How to Write Great Characters, Sunday, July 26 (see here).
Oakville: "You can write great dialogue," Saturday, Aug 8. Details here.  
Collingwood: "You can write great dialogue," Saturday, Aug 15.  Details here.
St. Catharines: How to Make Yourself Write," Saturday, Aug 22.  Details here.

September
Mississauga: Writing for Children and for Young Adults with Anne Shone, Executive Editor, Scholastic Books, Saturday, September 12. Details here.

Fall Classes
Online: Welcome to Creative Writing, Thursday afternoons, Sept 24 – Dec 3. Details here.
Online: Writing Kid Lit, Thursday evenings, Sept 24 – Nov 26. Details here.
Burlington: Intensive Creative Writing, Tuesday mornings, Sept 15 – Dec 15
Online: Intensive Creative Writing, Wednesday evenings, Sept 16 to Dec 9 – this class is almost full. Details here.
Online: Intensive Creative Writing, Friday mornings. Sept 18 – Dec 11 – this class is almost full. Details here.

See Brian’s complete current schedule hereincluding writing workshops, weekly writing classes, and weekend retreats in, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Collingwood, Georgetown, Georgina, Guelph, Hamilton, Jackson’s Point, Kingston, Kitchener-Waterloo, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Southampton, Sudbury, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.


Navigation tips: Always check out the Labels underneath a post; they’ll lead you to various distinct collections of postings. If you're searching for more interviews with literary agents or a literary agent who represents a particular type of book, check out this post.

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

How to Get Published, with literary agent Paige Sisley, Saturday, Oct 24, in Guelph

The Innocents by Michael Crummy
represented by CookeMcDermid
How to Get Published
An editor & a literary agent tell all
Saturday, October 24, 2020
10 a.m. – 3:30 / 4:45
Harcourt United Church, 87 Dean Ave, Guelph, Ontario (Map here.)

If you've ever dreamed of becoming a published author, this workshop is for you. We’ll cover everything from getting started to getting an agent, from getting your short pieces published to finding a book publisher, from writing a query letter to writing what the publishers want. Bring your questions. Come and get ready to be published!
Special Option: Participants are invited to bring a draft of a query letter you might use to interest an agent or publisher in your book. You don’t need to bring anything, but if you do, three copies could be helpful.
And be sure to bring your elevator pitch! Following the end of the formal workshop at about 3:30 – 3:45, Brian Henry will be staying to help interested attendees, who didn’t have their queries critiqued earlier, write query letters that will get a yes, while literary agent Martha Webb will be listening to your pitches. Agents come to these events wanting to hear what you’ve got and hoping to find authors they want to represent.
Guest speaker, Paige Sisley, is a literary agent with the CookeMcDermid agency. 
CookeMcDermid represents  more than 300 writers, among them Man Booker nominees, Giller and Governor General’s award–winning authors, prize-winning journalists, New York Times bestsellers, international authorities in their field, and some of the literary world’s most notable names. 
Clients include Jen Agg, Omar el Akkad, Michael Crummey, Cherie Dimaline, Robyn Doolittle, John Irving, Rupi Kaur, Scaachi Koul, Karen Le Billon, Geddy Lee, Robert Munsch, Maye Musk, Alison Pick, Nino Ricci, Guy Vanderhaeghe, Jeff VanderMeer, and Jesse Wente.
Paige joined CookeMcDermid (then The Cooke Agency) in June 2013 following an internship. Paige has her Master of Arts from Ryerson University's Literatures of Modernity program and a Bachelor’s degree in English from the University of King's College and Dalhousie.
Paige is currently building her list as a keen and market-focused reader. When it comes to fiction she is looking for smart, well-written commercial novels that both entertain and have something to say (e.g. Liane Moriarty's Big Little Lies and Eliza Kennedy’s I Take You). She’s seeking books that can compete with Netflix for people’s time, but that someone like Reese Witherspoon might in turn be interested in adapting for Netflix.
Paige also represents nonfiction books in the lifestyle and health and wellness space. In both categories, Paige is attracted to books that enhance lives, either through a practical application or by shifting and expanding their reader’s worldview.
When Paige’s head isn’t in a book you can find her baking, at a concert, or simply watching the world go by in her busy downtown Toronto neighborhood. A born and bred Torontonian, Paige loves to travel and has also lived in LA, a sleepy New Zealand surf town, and Halifax, Nova Scotia. 


Workshop leader Brian Henry has been a book editor and creative writing instructor for more than 25 years. He publishes Quick Brown Fox, Canada’s most popular blog for writers, teaches creative writing at Ryerson University, and has led workshops everywhere from Boston to Buffalo and from Sarnia to Charlottetown. But his proudest boast is that he has helped many of his students get their first book published and launch their careers as authors. 
See reviews of Brian's classes and workshops here.

Fee: $43.36 + 13% hst = $49 paid in advance by mail or Interac
or $46.90 + 13% hst = $53 if you wait to pay at the door
To reserve a spot now, email: brianhenry@sympatico.ca

See Brian’s complete current schedule here, including Saturday writing workshops, weekly writing classes, and weekend retreats in Algonquin Park, Alliston, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Collingwood, Georgetown, Georgina, Guelph, Hamilton, Jackson’s Point, Kitchener-Waterloo, London, Midland, Mississauga, New Tecumseth, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Sudbury, Toronto, Windsor,  Woodstock, Halton, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.

Monday, June 29, 2020

“All Is Quiet” by Angela Varghese



All Is Quiet
5:30
Up early
Move around
Not a sound
All is quiet

Heads resting
On pillows nesting
Hearts are peaceful
Minds are blissful
All is quiet

Bodies stirring
Eyelids lifting
Bare feet touch the floor
Pitter patter down the stairs
Peering round the door

Mama turning
To noises stirring
Beautiful faces smiling

The day’s begun
Time for fun
All is busy now

Bread is toasted
Friends are hosted
Bicycles ridden
Lunch is given
Mama needs a nap

Noah, Josh, Elijah and Neha
Guitar is amped
Living room cramped
Play Station on
 Computer plays a song

Mama heads to kitchen

Dinner cooked
Tomorrow’s play dates booked
Children are fed
Stories well read

Noah, Josh TV watching
Neha, Elijah giggling and hopping
Mama tired nearly dropping
Heads upstairs to say goodnight
Foreheads kissed
Prayers well said
All are tucked in tight

The day is over
Heads are resting
In pillows nesting
Hearts are peaceful
Minds are blissful
All is quiet

Angela Varghese is a happy but tired mother of four.  She lives in Oakville.  By day she cleans houses allowing her time to think about writing and words.  By mid-afternoon she is home with the kids cooking and interacting with them.  In the evening she spends her time writing.  Angela thanks her mom for being the original storyteller and thanks her children for inspiring her to keep going.

See Brian Henry's schedule hereincluding writing workshops, weekly online writing classes, and weekend retreats in Alliston, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Collingwood, Georgetown, Georgina, Guelph, Hamilton, Jackson’s Point, Kingston, Kitchener-Waterloo, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Southampton, Sudbury, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.