How to Be Your Own Best Poetry Editor

Sometimes you get to a certain point and you just don’t know what to do with a poem. You might have many drafts and you don’t know what’s working anymore. You’ve lost perspective. And on top of that, maybe you’re surrounded by a whole bunch of other discarded poems that aren’t working either and you’re getting different critiques and you don’t know who to believe and you’ve kind of lost your mind. I’m going to give you an exercise to help you deal with that situation. Many people say one of the best ways to deepen your craft is to read in your genre, so in this case, go out there and read poetry. But I’m going to make it a little more specific in order to help you be your own best poetry editor. Exercise: Read three different literary magazines and find a poem in each one of them that you’re absolutely crazy about. Now, what can you glean from these poems? How does searching for favourite poems help you? 1. These poems hold a key to what you’re aiming for in your own poetry, what you’re …

The Ins and Outs of Submitting to Literary Magazines

Ten questions to keep in mind Choosing which Magazines to Submit to There are so many journals that it can be hard to choose. Here are some key questions to ask yourself to narrow them down: 1. What literary magazines do you like that match your writing style? It’s important to get a sense of the publications you’re going to submit to. Read a recent issue. You’ll have a better idea of what pieces you have that match the editorial aesthetic of the magazine and vice versa, not to mention that it’s worthwhile to read as much as you can in your genre. Check out the list of Canadian literary magazines at 2. Are you looking for a print magazine? An online magazine? Both? These days, writers are seeing the value of online magazines, which are readily accessible to readers. However, print magazines are still coveted by many writers, especially if they’re available in bookstores and newsstands. Some publications have their issues both online and in print—a decided advantage. Where wou…

Q&A with poet Robin Richardson

“The truth, and the vulnerability of sharing it, is liberation.

Robin Richardson is the author of two full-length collections of poetry, and is Editor-in-Chief atMinola Review, a Journal of Women’s Arts & LettersHer work has been shortlisted for the Walrus Poetry Prize, CBC Poetry Award, Lemon Hound Poetry Prize, and ReLit Award and has won the John B. Santorini Award and the Joan T. Baldwin Award. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in many journals including POETRY, Tin House, Arc, The North American Review, and Hazlitt of Random House. She holds an MFA in Poetry from Sarah Lawrence College and BA in Design from OCAD University. Richardson’s latest collection, Sit How You Want, is forthcoming with Véhicule Press. She is represented by Samantha Haywood at Transatlantic Agency, who is working with her debut memoir this year. 
A couple of weeks ago, Robin Richardson featured at the Art Bar Poetry Series. The atmosphere was warm and inviting, and the audience, full of young and…

Mad Men-esque — A Dark Look at Hollywood Filmmaking

In this Hollywood, art is all "lies, connivance and darkness." 
Scrolling through the books on Biblioasis' websiteThe Camera Always Lies, a novel by Hugh Hood, caught my eye. It's described as a story about "Hollywood politics and one woman’s struggle to survive them." I was intrigued, not only by the promise of an insider's view, but to boot, the main character is a woman. Sold. (Not to mention Hugh Hood's bio, which in itself is impressive.) I read the novel over two evenings and thoroughly enjoyed it. 
Set in 1966-67, this is a very dark look at Hollywood filmmaking. Love and Art are all but extinguished in this Holly-land. The greed, lust and misogyny are palpable. Hugh Hood strikes the right balance by injecting humour into the mix. Even the truly "bad guys" are funny. And the overall statement Hood is making about art versus commercialism/careerism elevates the whole thing. 
At the beginning of the novel, it appears that this is goin…

In Conversation with Poet Sonia Di Placido

“I found myself in an Akashic Wood.” 

Sonia Di Placido's poems, essays, and other writings have appeared in blogs, literary print and online journals such asThe Toronto Quarterly,Carousel,The Puritan,The White Wall Review38,Jacket2, The California Journal of Women Writers, and the Canthius Journal. Two anthologies worthy of mention:Walk Myself Home, An Anthology of Violence Against Women(Caitlin Press), andThe Poet to Poet Anthology (Guernica Editions). Sonia’s first full-length collection of poetry,Exaltation in Cadmium Red, launched in 2012 with Guernica Editions. Her second book of poems with Guernica Editions is forthcoming in 2018. Sonia's also currently working on an epistolary series about poetry and writing. 
Sonia's latest chapbook, The Akashic Woodwas published this past spring by LyricalMyrical Press. The opening quote by Emily Dickinson (from the poem “My Life had stood – a Loaded Gun”) sets the fiery and dangerous tone for this collection. This is not going t…

Q&A with poet Michael Fraser

I didn’t have to challenge myself. Numerous challenges emerged on their own.

BIOGRAPHICAL INFO: Michael Fraser has been published in numerous national and international anthologies and journals including:Paris Atlantic,Arc, CV2, andThe Caribbean Writer. He wonARC’s Reader’s Choice award for 2012, and was included in the Best Canadian Poetry in English 2013. He wonFreeFall’s 2014 and 2015 Poetry Contests. His latest book isTo Greet Yourself Arriving (Tightrope Books). He is the creator and former director of the Plasticine Poetry Series. 
Michael’s second collection of poetryTo Greet Yourself Arrivingwas recently published by Tightrope Books. As the title suggests, this collection explores self-awareness, fragmented selves, and the best self. Some of the poems are portraits of people who have accomplished rare achievements, such as Bob Marley, Joe Frazier, Maya Angelou and Barack Obama. With each poem, the reader is immersed in rich imagery and surprising metaphors. To Greet Yourself A…