Saturday, March 15, 2008

gritLIT comes to Lit Live in April 2008

This month Lit Live joins the gritLIT festival, presenting poets, fiction writers and artists from across Canada as part of Hamilton's major annual literary event. Click the links on the right to see who's coming!

Steve McOrmond

Steve McOrmond was born in Nova Scotia and grew up on Prince Edward Island. His poems have been published internationally in literary magazines and online at Maisonneuve, nthposition (UK) and Jacket (Australia). His work also appears in the anthology Breathing Fire 2: Canada's New Poets. His first book of poetry, Lean Days, was short listed for the 2005 Gerald Lampert Award. His second collection, Primer on the Hereafter, was awarded the 2007 Atlantic Poetry Prize. He lives in Toronto.

Shari Lapeña

Shari Lapeña worked as a lawyer and as an English teacher before turning to writing fiction. She is a graduate of The Humber School for Writers, where her mentor was David Adams Richards. An excerpt from her first novel, Things Go Flying, appeared in the Spring 2005 issue of The Dalhousie Review. She won the Globe and Mail’s Great Toronto Literary Project contest, and was short listed for the 2006 CBC Literary Awards. She lives in Toronto and is currently at work on her second novel, The Poets’ Preservation Society.

Sharon English

Sharon English was born in London, Ontario, where, for a while, she excelled mostly at memorizing song lyrics and episodes of Star Trek. She eventually studied English literature at the University of Western Ontario and at the University of British Columbia, where she dropped out of a Ph.D. program to pursue fiction writing. Since then she has held various jobs, and now works as a teacher and freelance editor in Toronto.

Sharon English has published two books of short fiction, Zero Gravity and Uncomfortably Numb.

Klyde Broox

Internationally respected dub poet Klyde Broox (a.k.a. Durm-I) has decades of performance experience in North America, Europe and the Caribbean. A consummate stage artist, he blends speech, song, dance and mime into a powerful package that is inspirational, entertaining and intellectually provocative.

Born in Jamaica, Broox won the Nathan Brissett poetry competition at Mico Teachers’ College, with the poem “Ode To The Bamboo.” in 1978. Nine years later Broox (as Durm-I) had become one of Jamaica's most promising dub poets. In England and the United States he did readings, workshops and guest lectures. His chapbook, Poemstorm was launched in Wales in 1989 and later in Jamaica. Broox received a James Michener Fellowship to the University of Miami's Caribbean Writers' Summer Institute, and therafter a scholarship.

In Canada, Klyde Broox has established himself as an influential literary figure Hamilton. In 2004, he was nominated for a John C. Holland award for community service. He is also active in the Toronto community and has coordinated both the 2004 and 2007 International Dub Poetry Festivals. Klyde's book My Best Friend is White was published by McGilligan Books.

Emily Holton

Originally from Hamilton, Emily Holton graduated from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design before moving to Toronto. She recently had her first solo art show at The Centre for Culture and Leisure No. 1. Her drawings have been published in Brick, Matrix, Kiss Machine and Broken Pencil.

Little Lessons in Safety is a collection of Holton's book works and drawings, produced over the past five years. Her "scratchy intelligent line drawings" (Broken Pencil) and lean text play with the format of children's readers, comics, celebrity fashion magazines, and cut-and-paste murder mysteries. A boy grows a bird for hair, monkeys are shot out of cannons, feral children grow up to be cowboys, treeplanters never come back. Karl Lagerfeld takes over, as we all knew he would.

George A. Walker

In his latest book Blurring the Boundaries: Images from the Neocerebellum George Walker presents wood engravings inspired by dreams. Walker has been creating artwork and books and publishing at a variety of private presses since 1984. For over twenty years he has exhibited his wood engravings and limited edition books internationally. Among many book projects, he illustrated two hand-printed books by the American novelist Neil Gaiman and has also illustrated the first Canadian editions of Alice in Wonderland and Alice Through the Looking Glass (from Cheshire Cat Press). Walker was elected to the Royal Canadian Academy of Art in 2002 for his contribution to the cultural area of Book Arts. He lives in Toronto. Blurring the Boundaries: Images from the Cerebellum was recently published by Porcupine’s Quill.