Free Admission 🙂
So, over the last few years, I kept seeing Events posted on Facebook about the Chiaroscuro Reading Series in Ottawa. And I was really keen to go… but well, life happens.
Until THIS event – June 6th 2017! I said ‘screw you life!’ and decided rather last minute that I was going to attend one of these events – and I’m glad I made the hour-long drive to get there! It was great!
I’ve heard a few sample readings from Authors before at writer conferences, but this was a different experience.
ChiSeries Ottawa had just moved to a new location The Clocktower Brew Pub where everyone met in the cozy and intimate party room down stairs. A whole room, and bar, all to ourselves with most excellent service!
With the evening’s special Host Sandra Kasturi , we heard samples from Authors: Kathlyn Bradshaw who read an excerpt from her novel The Frankenstein Murders , Michael Libling read from his novella Hollywood North and Julie Czerneda beautifully read excerpts from 3 very different works. AND there was a hat story from none other than Marie Bilodeau!
Plus, there were enough donations raised that we were privileged to witness Matt Moore rock a rather dapper basket-hat (of Marie’s choice) for the rest of the evening.
I believe the next Ottawa reading event will be in September – BUT, they have reading events all across Canada! So, if you don’t live near Ottawa, or just can’t wait till September, there are 5 cities choose from (with more to come in the near future) and you can go and support Canadian Authors there/then – because supporting home talent is a good thing 😉
As I had posted on Twitter later that evening –
There really is something magical about hearing author’s works in their own voices.
LIMESTONE GENRE 2016 was this conference’s second year, and was held July 23 &24 in downtown Kingston Ontario (my favourite Canadian city) at Kingston Frontenac Public Library. I’m late in posting about this conference since summer was insanely busy with family affairs, but better late than never!
This year I focussed on the panels all weekend, but there were a lot of great Readings and Workshops available too. The Author list was extensive and the dealer room was impressive and consistently packed with buyers and minglers.
There was a nice mix of all Spec-Fic Genre topics – Fantasy, Mystery, the world of Comics, Science Fiction, Comedy, Thriller, Horror and Romance etc.. and the Cross Genre discussion to round it all up.
In mystery, with my love of history, specifically Canadian history – I was quite interested in Janet Kellough ‘s Thaddeus Lewis series set in historical Eastern Ontario. And there was Y.S. Lee ‘s Agency series set in Victorian London.
Derek Newman-Stille interviewed Jay Odjick on the topic of Comic creation and Jay’s KAGAGI: The Raven project. They discussed everything from the details of Comic artistry and publication to the Kagagi television series production and Jay’s background and success as a First Nations artist and businessman – which for him is important as a role model to his Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg community. It was a great interview -Derek always has insightful questions and commentary to every discussion he attends, while Jay’s charisma and energy make 2hrs fly by.
Another panel I always find interesting is the Horror discussion which aside from great book lists, also leads to reflections on human nature through fear. Some of this panel’s attendees included David Nickle , Alyssa Cooper and Matt Moore .
Through all of the discussions I listened to over the course of the weekend, the underlying theme in many topics was acceptance and change in diversity in the publishing world. Panels about Feminism, LGBTQ2 Identities and Disability representations in fiction. These topics have been growing at every convention with open discussions amongst authors reflecting diversity and promoting them. It’s great to see the social changes being made through art and the frank dialogue over what has changed and how to navigate what still needs to be improved.
Thanks to Liz Strange and her crew for all the work put into organizing this event!