Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

Profile of Pivot at the Press Club

Share |
Profile of Pivot at the Press Club

OB:

When did you decide to start the Pivot reading series, and how did it develop?

CT:

Pivot at the Press Club is a direct result of the demise of the IV Lounge Reading Series. That series was started by Paul Vermeersch 10 years ago and more recently was organized by Alex Boyd. I was slated to read at the IV the week after the bar closed down, thereby ending the series as well. It was a shock and a disappointment, to say the least.

While talking with Alex about it afterward, he mentioned that he was considering moving on to do other things, and wondered if I was interested in taking over hosting a new series. My first reaction was "no way in hell!" but after he reassured me that it wouldn't take over my life, I came around.

Alex has been an incredible source of advice and support as I've gone about finding a new location, coming up with a new name, and publicizing the new series. I couldn't have done it without him. The Press Club was my first choice for venue - it's a cozy, art-filled space with a stage and mic ready to go, a wonderfully friendly and relaxed staff and management, a well-stocked bar and a big back patio. And it's on Dundas, like the IV Lounge was, although a little to the west, just three blocks west of Bathurst. As for the name, I wanted something unique that incorporated the letters "iv."

OB:

Tell us about yourself.

CT:

I grew up in Alberta, moved to Toronto at 17 to take a journalism undergraduate degree at Ryerson, and then subsequently moved to Scandinavia for six years, with a short stint in the Middle East in 2003-4. I love travelling and have done all kinds of silly work to support that habit - web copywriting, start-ups, custom publishing, proofreading and copyediting. While I was in Europe I got my master's degree in English literature and linguistics, and wrote a thesis about Elizabeth Bishop's Nova Scotia poems.

I moved back to Toronto with my husband last fall and now I work as a magazine editor during the day and write at night. I've been writing poetry for several years now and have had a few poems published in CV2, the TSPBF's Fevered Spring anthology and others, although overall I'm not great with the whole submitting thing - counterintuitive to my journalism background, I know. I'm enrolled in a poetry masterclass with Ken Babstock at the U of T this year, which is very exciting. It's almost decadent to be back in a native-English speaking country and have access to all of this!

I'm also going to be reading at Tinto at 89 Roncesvalles on October 24 with Faye Guenther and Dani Couture, and Emily Schultz will be hosting. The show starts at 8 p.m. and it's free.

OB:

What is the structure for the Pivot series?

CT:

Pivot will follow the same structure as IV Lounge did: three readers a night, poetry and fiction, emerging and established. No open mic. We don't pay readers, although they are more than welcome to bring books to sell.

OB:

How do writers sign up to read at Pivot?

CT:

They email me at careytoane[at]gmail[dot]com. If they're new or from out of town, they should include a brief bio, link to a website, writing samples, etc. Right now, we're giving precedence to those readers who were booked to read at the IV Lounge this fall - yet another way Pivot is indebted to IV: there's a lot of great talent in that list.

OB:

What readings are scheduled for the fall?

CT:

I'm happy to say the series is already fully booked from here till January 2009! The launch is October 15 at 8 p.m., featuring Alex Boyd and Paul Vermeersch reading poetry, and Leigh Nash and Rebecca Rosenblum reading fiction. It's a four-for-the-price-of-three special offer, one time only. Come early, as it's promising to be a full house.

I'll be announcing further lineups at the launch event, or people can check the site (http://pivotreadings.wordpress...) and email me to join the Pivot mailing list. I'd also like to plug patchysquirrel.ca - a great source of info on Pivot and other quality literary events happening each week in Toronto.

Related item from our archives