Monday, October 01, 2007

Community: Word On The Street and Words Alive!

I was going to write this blog about community and then I reread the blogs about TV and it was so fun so I thought I'd blog about Dexter but I passed out on the couch and missed everything but the end -- thank you PVR - thank you. So - back to community - which is a better post anyway.

Big weekend for writers in the Toronto area -- Word On The Street on Sunday and the first ever Words Alive! North of the city on Saturday. I was asked to speak on Saturday and so I ditched the kid with the in laws and spent the whole day. Fantastic event. Beautiful location - the Sharon Temple and all the chopped egg sandwiches I could eat (I love hospitality rooms). I saw two amazing speakers - both Toronto writers with new books. Prisoner in Tehran by Marina Nemat - an amazing woman with a shocking story to tell. Check it out. I don't think I breathed the entire time she talked.

The other Canadian author was Robert Hough talking about the voice that told him to write a book about the Russian/Chechen conflict and when Robert balked the voice told him it was going to be funny. The Culprits was born.

Next year the event will be bigger and better so I really urge everyone to check it out. Thanks to the familiar faces that came to fill the Cookhouse for my talk.

Word On The Street on Sunday was as usual an exhausting, inspiring, exciting day to be a part of . Toronto Romance Writers had a both and I was stunned by the number of women who are writing romance and haven't heard of us or checked us out - I hope all of them come to a meeting and realize it's so much nicer writing outside the vacuum. I was also stunned by the number of very creepy and smelly men who took the opportunity to tell us any number of strange and inappropriate things about themselves and their romantic inclinations.

I did a signing at the Harlequin tent and - my theory that readers of category romance don't come out to events like signings or Word On the Street was utterly and totally trashed. It was a mob scene. My wrist hurts today. It was wild. Of course it's always good to catch up with Margaret Moore and Kate Bridges before the mob sucked them in too.

Bev Katz Rosenbaum did a reading of her second YA novel - Totally Cool. I so recommend any parent of a young reader pick up this book. It's smart and funny and totally plugged in to right now. And I got a chance to talk cover art with Danielle Young Ullman - and seeing the cover art I have to say WHAT A LOOK!!! Fantastic cover.

It was a good weekend to be a writer. It made me very glad that I got out of the vacuum and so, walking around these events I didn't feel like an outsider or a pretender. I felt like a writer among writers. Which is such a good feeling.

6 comments:

Christine d'Abo said...

It sounds like a fantastic time! I plan on being there next year to participate. :)

Molly O'Keefe said...

We look forward to having you around to participate!!! It was a great event -- I look forward to it next year too - though I am ridiculously tired today. All that smiling I think.

Sinead M said...

Christine, so excited you're returning to T.O.

Molly, sounds like the event went really well. I'm thrilled there was a good turnout.

Maureen McGowan said...

Oh, Marina Nemat's book was the "one that got away" from my friend and I when we were buying an evening with the author event for our bookclub during a charity silent auction. Bummer. (Although the one we did "win" was good, too.)

Molly O'Keefe said...

OMG! that would have been an amazing evening with her -- her story is unbelievable -- truly wild and terrible. But I found the most amazing part to be that once she was out of Iran and in Canada she worked as a waitress at Swiss Chalet for years before writing this book and now she is literally a voice for female political prisoners - for political rpisoners around the world! She's on the world stage in a scary way. Amazing woman.

Molly O'Keefe said...

You know I think that events like this just really tune you into what's happening in Toronto -- thee are so many writers worth reading and watching and they are our neighbors!! In Young Adult alone there seems to be a huge number of Canadian Authors making a splash. I just get such tunnel vision --

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