Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Alteration to Schedule, Surrey Muse: Val's Poems Read Early


night walk by elizabeth mcclung of SCREW BRONZE

Doesn't sound like much of a news flash but if you were thinking of not going on Friday because you are not able to stay up (or out) late in the evening, this could make the difference in whether you go.

It's been decided to read Val's poems at the beginning of the evening rather than reserving them for the end, when the Open Mic usually occurs. So the info again is:

There will be a Tribute Gathering for Valerie with various performers at City Centre Library in Surrey, room 418, behind the Surrey Central SkyTrain station, on Friday, 24 October from 5:30-8:30 PM.

Thanks, Surrey Muse!


Friday, October 17, 2014

Valerie B-Taylor's Celebration of Life

Valerie beautifully launching Eileen Kernaghan's "Sophie, In Shadow" in the midst of her health challenges.

:
We will be celebrating Valerie's life together
:

on Saturday, 8 November 2014

from 2 PM till 8 PM
Presentation at 3:30 PM

1928 West Broadway
Vancouver, BC
Near Maple (east of Arbutus)
778-882-2642



We love you, Valerie! Thank you for being a Sunburst and a Loving Friend!




Thursday, October 09, 2014

Goodbye to a Friend


Dear friend and writer Valerie B-Taylor died while we were having fun at VCon, unaware that, far from getting better during her stay at hospital, she was letting go of her life. It is a very sad parting, and I so wish I had had the chance to say goodbye.

Valerie was filled with humour and compassion. She was audacious and bold in her writing and her life; we called her seat in our writers group The Naughty Seat because of what she brought to it so many times. Yet she also brought encouragement, joy, deep sorrow, fierce protectiveness, and a wild intelligence that I will miss for years to come.

Goodbye, dear one. Thank you for your love and wisdom. Many blessings on your journey.

Photo from New West Writers

Valerie was, among other supportive roles in the writing community, the president of New West Writers. This is something she posted on their site:








V.B.-Taylor (formerly Valerie P. Aelbers)

It is in that moment, that very moment, when my mind, spirit, and body converge that I know I am a writer. When story moves through me; when story translates through text onto paper another voice unheard.
V. B.- Taylor



The video above shows Valerie as she receives a Distinguished Poet/Writer Award (WIN Literary Festival) presented by Ashok Bhargava and Mabel Elmore, MLA, in Richmond, 2013.

There will be a Tribute Gathering for Valerie with various performers at City Centre Library in Surrey, room 418, behind the Surrey Central SkyTrain station, on Friday, 24 October from 5:30-8:30 PM.

Thanks to Eileen Kernagahn, our leader at the Kyle Center Writers Workshop, for making space for us to grieve and celebrate Valerie today, and to Eileen Mackenzie for bringing in her written memoir of Val, which opened the gates for all of us to speak who needed to.

Sitting In For SF Canada


Well, this is fun. Kristene Perron of SF Canada sent in this photo of me staffing the SFC table at VCon 39.

Casey at the SFC Table at VCon 39. Photo courtesy Kristene Perron

About SF Canada
SF Canada was founded in 1989 as Canada’s National Association for Speculative Fiction Professionals, and was Incorporated as SF Canada in 1992.
SF Canada exists to foster a sense of community among Canadian writers of speculative fiction, to improve communication, to foster the growth of quality writing, to lobby on behalf of Canadian writers, and to encourage the translation of Canadian speculative fiction. SF Canada supports positive social action.
“Speculative fiction” is understood by members to include science fiction, fantasy, horror and any other other weird fiction that invokes a sense of wonder.
SF Canada aims to provide a structure for socializing and maintaining links among members throughout Canada, from coast to coast to coast, in both official languages, and to promote the publishing and sale of works created, edited, and published by its members.
SF Canada provides free webhosting to members on the association website, and maintains a private internet listserver—an online discussion group that is unmoderated and completely uncensored! SF Canada also organizes critique groups and meetings, and operates an online bookstore to publicize and promote its members and their books. SF Canada members are eligible for non-profit health and dental insurance through the Writers’ Coalition Program in cooperation with the Writers’ Union of Canada, and have access to home and auto insurance at lower than market rates.
To qualify for SF Canada membership, an author must have published for payment at least two short stories or three poems in commercial markets, or received a royalty advance for a novel. An editor must have contracted for payment at least one book manuscript or three issues of a magazine. Other Canadians with a substantial professional interest in SF (specialized publishers, academics, librarians) will be considered for membership on a case by case basis. A one-year membership is worth $30; the fixed renewal date is on Canada Day, but members who join after January 1 are credited with the July 1 renewal. Two members living at the same postal address qualify for a common $30 rate.
For more information, or if you wish to apply to become a member, please contact us.

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

VCon 39


Survived the con, and a good time was had by all. Somehow I was always in a whirl--I still see tracks when I turn my head.

I especially hanging out with the kids--Frank, Jules, and Flora--and brother-in-law Nick, doing the Writers Workshop on Sunday, and the Turkey Readings shortly thereafter. Also enjoyable was reading with Eileen Kernaghan, she from her new novel Sophie, In Shadow, and me from "Posture of the Infinite", published in Red Tuque Books' Canadian Tales of the Fantastic Vol. IV.

Eileen won her third Prix Aurora Award on the weekend, to my (and I gather her) delight. From Wattle and Daub Books, who published her book of poetry:

Congratulations to Wattle and Daub Books author Eileen Kernaghan who this weekend won the 2014 Prix Aurora Award for Best Poem or Song in English for “Night Journey: West Coast”, published in Tesseracts Seventeen: Speculating Canada from Coast to Coast to Coast, EDGE (2013).

For more of her excellent speculative poetry, her collection Tales of the Holograph Woods: Speculative Poetry can be ordered here.

Now, a little photographic evidence, and I'm back to the rest home.

En Route to VCon 39

Rose and Her Companion

Human Battleship

Bug-Eyed Monster

Action Shot
Best In Show! (And Man, Did She Deserve It.)

Monday, September 22, 2014

The Selfy Challenge


One thing I am not pulling my weight on is getting good recent photos of me out there for the roaring fan-crowd to dream over. That, my friends, is about to change. I have taken

The Selfy Challenge!

First, something serious and arty:


Next, something gay and quirky:

(Confession: Not Actually a Selfy)

One showing my deep appreciation of nature:


And finally, an image that truly defines my personality:

Self Portrait in Herbs

My work here is done.


Saturday, September 20, 2014

New eStory: "Finding Creatures"


Here it is. My second venture into epublishing: the title story from my collection, Finding Creatures & Other Stories. Follow this link for a free download.

"Bernadette is a lonely little girl...until she meets Angel, a horse nobody else can see, a friend like she has never known before. But is she really the only one who can see Angel? Is she really Angel's only friend?"



Another Fine Day in the Scriptorium



St Birgitta of Sweden

A hedge of trees surrounds me, a blackbird’s lay sings to me, praise I shall not conceal,
Above my lined book the trilling of the birds sings to me.
A clear-voiced cuckoo sings to me in a gray cloak from the tops of bushes,
May the Lord save me from Judgement; well do I write under the greenwood.


Time to confess. I have been working on another writing blog.

It isn't meant to replace this one, exactly. The Den is still where I will post updates and so forth. But during a period when I was feeling out of sorts with the whole Promote Publish or Perish caterwaul, I realized I needed a peaceful place to take myself to think about writing, and to share writing, mine and others. It is still gestating, really, but I have a few elements there that I like, and I do, indeed, feel calm and happy when looking over the quite, lovely look of the place.

One thing I decided was that I wanted to share my stories rather than sell them—if not all, at least some. So one of the pages links to free fiction online, including to my first ebooks, both of which are short stories from Finding Creatures & Other Stories. Indeed, one of them, just published tonight, is "Finding Creatures" itself.

In addition there are woodcuts to admire and be inspired by, links to interviews of Eileen Kernaghan and Mike Coney, as well as interviews of me, reviews of some books I have read and loved, and a couple of peaceful poems.

I'm not sure where it will lead over time, but I do invite you to have a look and to say hello if you are so moved. Maybe there is a way that others can participate as well. I am interested in your suggestions.

I think we all need a peaceful place to retreat to at times, and the scriptorium is one that is filled with the love of the pen.

 Please Visit Another Fine Day in the Scriptorium by Following This Link.

 
Manuscript Book mural in Evolution of the Book series John White Alexander 1896