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Abel constructed the source text of Un/inhabited by compiling 91 complete western novels found on the website Project Gutenberg, an online archive of public domain works. He then searched the document in its totality for words that relate to the political and social aspects of land, territory, and ownership. Each search query represents a study in context (How was this word deployed? What surrounded it? What is left over once that word is removed?) that accumulates toward a representation of the public domain as a discoverable and inhabitable body of land. Featuring a text by independent curator Kathleen Ritter – the first piece of scholarship on Abel’s work – Un/inhabited reminds us of the power of language as material and invites us to reflect on what is present when we see nothing.
Un/inhabited is a co-publication of Project Space Press and Talonbooks. A limited number of first editions will be available from Abel at his performance, Q&A session, and book signing on Sunday, October 5, 2014 (see the Vancouver Art Book Fair website for event details) and from Project Space Press. The trade paperback edition will be available from Talonbooks in early 2015 as part of Talon’s Spring 2015 season.
Phinder Dulai signs a copy of dream / arteries (Photo by Mandeep Wirk)
On Saturday evening, September 27, 2014, Phinder Dulai launched his book, dream / arteries, a collection of poetry that commemorates the Komagata Maru incident. The launch was held at the Surrey Arts Centre in Surrey, BC on Saturday evening, with about 70 people in attendance. Dulai’s reading was noted for its enthusiasm and eloquence. One audience member took and shared a gorgeous set of professional photos on Flickr.Monday September 29, 2014 in News
Photo by Kevin Williams
Congratulations to Chief Bev Sellars, who was awarded third place in the 2014 Burt Awards for First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Literature! This year’s winning titles are:
The awards were presented a gala in Winnipeg on Saturday evening, September 27th. Read the full press release online.
If you read on a tablet, e-reader, or smartphone, you may have noticed that the number of available Talon titles has grown steadily since we published our first electronic book back in 2011 (all part of Talon’s now completed renewal plan). There are now 100 Talonbooks available as ebooks (depending on which ebook vendor site one peruses; for example, there are currently 98 Talon titles available from Kobo). Here are some fun facts about our ebooks published to date:
Talon’s bestselling ebooks are
The most recent Talonbooks published in electronic formats are
By August 2013 Talon had sold more than 500 ebooks, and the total number sold to date has grown to about 2,975 – and counting! We work hard to publish words that matter and ebooks that are high-calibre, and we are happy to see evidence of our readers enjoying them!
The Montreal English Theatre Awards, or METAs, are a set of peer-juried awards that recognize and celebrate the artistic work that is outstanding in Montreal English Theatre.
This year, Seeds seems to have swept the nominations! Seeds was staged in 2013 by Porte Parole and the Centaur Theatre. Written by Annabel Soutar, Seeds offers perhaps the most balanced presentation of the Percy Schmeiser vs. Monsanto court case – a trial that brought to light farming practices and problems related to GMOs. A piece of “documentary theatre,” Seeds uses court transcripts and verbatim interviews as the basis of its thoughtful script.
The venerable Eric Peterson is nominated for Outstanding Lead Performance by an Actor; Tanja Jacobs for Outstanding Supporting Performance by an Actress; Alex Ivanovici for Outstanding Supporting Performance by an Actor; Julie Fox for Outstanding Set Design; Richard Feren for Outstanding Sound Design; and the play as a whole for Outstanding Professional Production.
See the full list of nominees here.
Congratulations to everyone involved with this fantastic, thought-provoking play!
Two English-language and two French-language playwrights are up for this year’s Siminovitch Prize, and Michel Marc Bouchard is one of them. We heartily congratulate him on this accolade!
Michel Marc Bouchard
The annual Siminovitch Prize, worth $100,000 over three years, celebrates a director, playwright, or designer whose work is transformative and influential. The other shortlisted playwrights are Colleen Murphy, Hannah Moscovitch, and Olivier Choinière. The 2014 prize will be awarded on October 20 at Hart House Theatre in Toronto. Learn more at the Siminovitch Prize website.
Congratulations to M.A.C. Farrant, author of The World Afloat, which has just been shortlisted for the 2014 City of Victoria Book Prize! Farrant is the author of 14 works of short fiction and non-fiction, five of which are available from Talonbooks.
The shortlist is as follows:
The City of Victoria Butler Book Prize acknowledges and celebrates Victoria’s extraordinarily accomplished writing community and the readers who support them. This prize and the Bolen’s Book Prize for Children’s literature are awarded at an annual Gala in October. See the Victoria Book Prizes website for more detail.
The duress of waiting for Peace in Duress is over, and we may have peace at last: it has arrived! This latest collection of poetry by Mohawk spoken-word artist Janet Rogers is now available for $16.95. Take a step into this collection by listening to some of its poems on Meta-Talon.
“Finding the Words: Linda Gaboriau’s struggle to translate a hit Quebec play” by Eric Andrew-Gee is a piece recently published in The Walrus about translator Linda Gaboriau’s efforts to translate the play Christina, The Girl King by Michel Marc Bouchard from French into English. Here is a teaser from the article, which is available online in full:
Gaboriau’s work has to perform a double translation, from French to English, and from page to stage—keeping faith with the meaning of the original text, but also sounding musical in the mouths of the actors. Ideally, her Christina will give anglophones a taste of Quebec drama’s distinctive grandiloquence: its luscious verbosity, its fondness for soliloquies and ruminative asides. English-speaking troupes often flatten these attributes into a muted psychological realism—Brando reading the Bard.
If you follow Talonbooks on Twitter, thank you! We have been happy to see our flock grow significantly over the past year and reach the thousands; Talonbooks currently has 3,962 followers.
Our 4,000th follower on Twitter, whomever that may be, at whatever time it may happen, will be contacted (via Twitter Direct Message) and offered a free book – anything Talonbooks has published up to September 2014 (including ebooks)! (See our Fall 2014 catalogue for release dates.) We’ll cover the shipping and handling costs too, if our 4,000th follower lives anywhere in North America.
Have a look at our full list of published books, and spread word about our little contest to your literature-loving friends!
St. Jerome, the patron saint of translators
Every September 30th, readers, writers, and publishers mark International Translation Day by honouring the translators who help bring great literature of all kinds to new audiences. At Talonbooks, we are particularly privileged to work with many of Canada’s most pre-eminent literary translators. On this day, we say thank you and submit a few intriguing passages on the art of translation.Wednesday September 17, 2014 in Meta-Talon
Daniel Canty in his London studio, September 2014. Photo by Michael Yaroshevsky
Daniel Canty, author of Wigrum (2013) and Les États-unis du vent (to be published in English by Talonbooks in 2015), is currently in London, England at the Studio du Québec, where he is in the midst of a six-month residency. He wrote us a few rather Wigrumian lines from across the pond…Thursday September 11, 2014 in Meta-Talon
By Janet Rogers
Peace in Duress is the latest collection of poetry by Mohawk spoken-word artist Janet Rogers, who is the current poet laureate of Victoria, BC. Today on Meta-Talon, listen to seven poems from Peace in Duress, two of which are accompanied by their textual counterparts from the book.Monday August 25, 2014 in Meta-Talon
In the below scene, taken from the first act of Christina, The Girl King, Queen Christina has a frank discussion with Descartes during their first meeting. This discussion catalyzes the dilemma Christina is to face, later in the play.
We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts; the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund (CBF); and the Province of British Columbia through the British Columbia Arts Council for our publishing activities.
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