Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

The Questionless Books Interview: Poet, Literary Organizer and Raconteur Sachiko Murakami

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Sachiko Murakami

In The Questionless Books Interview, I get a whole bunch of books people (from authors to editors to publishers to sales/publicity/production people, booksellers, designers, librarians, readers, etc) to "answer" a series of unspoken "questions". The results highlight a delightful mix of the opportunities and challenges facing our sector: from doom and gloom to sunshine and rainbows, and every irony in between.

Sachiko Murakami's first collection of poems, The Invisibility Exhibit (Talonbooks 2008), was a finalist for the Governor General's Literary Award and the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award. Her second collection, Rebuild, also from Talon, is hot off the presses. She has been a literary worker for numerous presses, journals, and organizations. Most recently, she initiated Project Rebuild, a collaborative poetry project. She lives in Toronto where she co-hosts the Pivot Reading Series and is at work on a novel.

Sachiko's Links:

The Invisibility Exhibit
Toronto New School of Writing
University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies
Project Rebuild
Pivot Readings at the Press Club
Twitter @PivotReadings

I am probably napping.

I am known to write in fits, and support the literary community.

I do this in between naps.

I do this because I believe poets need to come out of their basement suites occasionally.

I do this when I am awake.

The way I do this is send many emails, tweets, and updates with many exclamation points.

At his/her core, a Writer is a thinker in collision with language.

As opposed to an Author, who is an idea in collision with history.

A Writer is responsible for translating synapse to syllable.

As opposed to an Author, who is responsible for updating her Wikipedia entry regularly.

At its core, Publishing is outward from the text.

As opposed to Editing, which is inward to the text.

A Publisher should always believe in the writer.

As opposed to an Editor, who should challenge the writer's beliefs.

A Manuscript that's ready to be read by others is naked and shivering.

As opposed to a Book that's ready to be ready by others, which is up to its knees in the mud.

A Manuscript should always be photocopied and ready for inking.

As opposed to a Book, which should always be ready to have its spine cracked.

At its core, Bookselling is finding that book? That came out a few years ago? That's blue?

As opposed to Book Marketing, which involves sparklers. On the Internet.

The smallest unit of narrative is !

The biggest reason to anticipate the future is it's always arriving.

The biggest reason to be scared of the future is it's always bloody arriving.

In the future we will all lla lliw ew erutuf eht nI

At his/her core, a Reader opens.

However, the ideal Reader speaks.

The views expressed in the Writer-in-Residence blogs are those held by the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Open Book: Toronto.

Related item from our archives

George Murray

George Murray’s six books of poetry include The Rush to Here and The Hunter. His most recent books, Whiteout and Glimpse: Selected Aphorisms, are published by ECW Press. He is the editor of the popular literary website

Go to George Murray’s Author Page