On Fiction, Nonfiction and Femininity

September 2013 News

2013 has been a very busy year so far, although not much has been visible on the writing front. In June I qualified as an Expressive Arts Therapist after three years of part-time study at Langara College. In July I was hired on as permanent faculty in the Creative Writing Department of Kwantlen Polytechnic University where I am now teaching half-time. In August I spent another great week at the Banff Centre working on my novel. I have been published in two great anthologies this year: Force Field: 77 BC Women Poets, edited by Susan Musgrave and published by Mother Tongue Press, and How to Expect What You’re Not Expecting: Stories of Pregnancy, Parenthood and Loss, edited by Jessica Hiemstra and Lisa Martin-DeMoor out from TouchWood Editions this fall. I am excited by friends’ 2013 publications across the genres, including Jane Silcott’s Everything Rustles: Memoirs (Anvil Press), Cynthia Flood’s Red Girl Rat Boy: Stories (Biblioasis) and Lydia Kwa’s sinuous: poems (Turnstone Press) as I navigate another incubation phase of my own writing and look forward to more news of my own publications soon.

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“Force Field” anthology launch

I am happy to be included in the new mothertongue press anthology Force Field: 77 BC Women Poets, and have been celebrating this at launches in Vancouver and Burnaby. I will also be helping launch the anthology on Sunday May 19 at the Seymour Art Gallery in Deep Cove, at 2 pm.

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November 2012 news

A round-up of recent literary activities:

In early 2012 I was fortunate enough to receive grants from the Canada Council and BC Arts Council to work on a novel which examines, among other issues, the impact of the Falklands War on both a British and an Argentinian combatant. I also recently spent a fabulous if too-short week on a self-directed literary residency at the Banff Centre working on it.

The talented musician and poet Rodney deCroo recently featured one of my poems on his new website, which is worth investigating for the range of poetic and musical gems it contains. Two poems will also be featured in an upcoming anthology of 75 BC Women Poets by Mother Tongue Press, due out in 2013, entitled Force Field. An essay will also be published in an intriguing creative nonfiction anthology, focused on experiences of pregnancy, childbirth and parenting, entitled How to Expect What You’re Not Expecting, edited by Jessica Hiemstra and Lisa Martin-deMoor, due out in the fall of 2013. I also continue to review fiction, including a review of Carmen Rodrigues’s novel Retribution in a recent issue of the Literary Review of Canada.

Finally, I was excited that Grace Shiver was long listed for the ReLit Poetry Award, an award I admire for its independence and integrity. Congratulations to the winners in all genres.

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Not entirely quiet on the Western Front

As a result of being fortunate enough to receive both a Canada Council and a BC Arts Council grant this year, I am currently working on a new project. Hopefully one which will bear fruit! This has (obviously) involved pulling back on public events and blog postings. Nevertheless there are a few items to share:
I will be participating in the Humber School of Writing’s Summer School “Success Stories” panel on July 7 in Toronto. I developed parts of my short fiction manuscript through Humber, under the mentoring of novelist David Bergen.
I was invited to contribute to the upcoming Mother Tongue anthology Fire and Rain, featuring 75 BC women poets. The anthology will be published this fall.
I also recently joined the newly established CWILA, a collective of Canadian women writers focused on increasing the role of women in Canadian literary journalism—an idea long overdue. Congratulations to poet Gillian Jerome and others for getting this up and running.
Plus, a new review of Animal in The Malahat Review, and one of Grace Shiver in subTerrain (two longstanding Canadian journals I respect and enjoy):
“Stonehouse’s skill lies in her ability to render a topsy-turvy world without alienating the reader.”—The Malahat Review.
“A sophisticated volume of poetry that explores, through many stances, the place of the mother … What pleases me most about Stonehouse’s collection is that what she writes is not always what the reader is left holding. She follows Heidegger’s suggestion that ‘what is spoken is never, and in no language, what is said.’”—subTerrain.

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New reviews, new projects

Check out the March edition of the Quill and Quire which has a review of Grace Shiver in it, as well as the March edition of the Literary Review of Canada, which features a lengthy and wonderful review of Animal. The latter may be available online eventually, but for now you need to find the print edition.

Meanwhile I’m working on a new, top secret project (or two) which will hopefully see the light of day in the not too distant future. This means I’m holed up in my office, although I hope to do some more readings later in the spring. More soon.

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Grace Shiver launch: warm and fuzzy!

Grace Shiver LaunchThanks to everyone who came out to my launch event last Friday. It was a warm, intimate crowd tucked in between the shelves of People’s Co-op Bookstore (well, Ray did open them up a bit–they are on wheels!) Special thanks to Lydia Kwa for her great intro (“the Lisbeth Salander of Canadian poetry” indeed!) to Ray for hosting, Mary at Little Nest for coordinating the luscious dips, and to Luciana at Inanna for all her support (wish you could have been there!) The shiver has now officially been launched.

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Christmas shopping opportunity

This Saturday, December 10, I will be at local artist Jill Pilon’s studio in the afternoon as part of her collective holiday art fair. Copies of books will be on hand. The details:



Please join us for our annual holiday sale.
December 10th 2011
1125 Mclean Drive(down the side stairs)
We will have an array of treasure at affordable prices so don’t miss out!
**We will also have an amazing raffle***
See you soon!
Cathy Stonehouse–meet the author and see her latest book!
Sylvia Oates- acrylic/oil landscapes
Helen Spaxman–Pottery/knitted gloves
Robbie Vergara–Silkscreen t-shirts 
Jill Pilon– www.jillpilon.com
Milisa Gardy–beeswax candles, herbs and teas from cortez island
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Upcoming Readings

I’m delighted to be “headlining” for the SFU Writers Studio Reading Series this coming Friday, November 11, at Take 5 Cafe in downtown Vancouver at Granville and Hastings. The event kicks off at 7pm with readings from an enticing list of other writers, including Ingrid Rose, and ends promptly at 9pm. I plan to read from Something About the Animal, and to wear (if I can find it) my white peace poppy.

I’m also thrilled to be reading at the downtown Vancouver Public Library branch on Wednesday November 23, 7:30 pm, as part of a Biblioasis evening hosted by the Incite reading series. The wonderful Rebecca Rosenblum will be there, as will Ray Robertson, whose latest nonfiction title, Why Not? Fifteen Reasons to Live is shortlisted for the Writers Trust Nonfiction Award.

And last but not least, I will be launching my new collection of poetry, Grace Shiver, published by Inanna Publications, at People’s Co-op Books on Commercial Drive the evening of Friday, January 27 (tbc). The book should be in my hands in a couple of weeks, and I can’t wait.

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Animal play list

I’m excited to announce that David Gutowski of www.largeheartedboy.com has now posted my play list for Something About the Animal. This was a fun project to participate in, and there are lots of other interesting play lists to look at also on the site, so check it out here.

I was especially excited to see Laird Hunt and Brian Evenson’s lists on the site, as both these experimental fiction writers have been inspirational to me. I also studied poetry at Naropa back in 2003 with Laird Hunt’s partner, Eleni Sikelianos, a workshop I will never forget, in part because it involved inventing new worlds (why not aim high!) I was struck then, and still am, by how little alternative literary work (and literature in general) crosses the US-Canada border. So it’s great to see a cross-pollinated site like this one. Speaking of which, Rachel Rose’s Cross-Pollination Reading Series at the Vancouver Public Library is a notable exception to the rule. And also speaking of which I will be reading at the VPL this November as part of the Writers’ Festival Incite reading series, alongside Biblioasis’s Ray Robertson and Rebecca Rosenblum. Do come if you are in town.

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At Last

This is the title of the novel I am currently reading, by Edward St. Aubyn–the brilliant, excoriating follow-up to his Patrick Melrose series–and is also the way I feel about the upcoming publication of my second collection of poetry, Grace Shiver, due out this October with Inanna Press. I will receive the galleys shortly and am excited to think of these poems finally coming into print.

In other news, as they say, I will be participating in a Biblioasis reading tour » more

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