Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015


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Festival Victoria is an oxymoron, hemlock, big toukas kissoff. The most liveable city in Canada, The Garden City, The Poetry Capitol of Canada can't seem to keep a festival going to save it's life. We have lost First Night, ROOTSFEST, Manulife Literary Festival etc etc even though the city of the newly wed and nearly dead is arts friendly and the biggest per capita book consumer in the country. Go figger.

Miracolo! Pacific Festival of the Book is in its third year; and the reason for its ongoing success is a grass roots approach. This year the main venues are St. John the Divine Church with its beautiful interior spaces and gardens, Intrepid Theatre, the Victoria Public Library, the Community Arts Council of Victoria, and Centennial Square, donated by the city of Victoria.

I gave Mister Mandolin season's tickets to dance Victoria for his birthday last year and this week we saw the Hubbard Street Dance Company from Chicago. I was reminded in the brilliant final act, when audience members were invited to come on stage (including one granny who really know how to shake her bootie), that inclusivity is an important receptor for audience bliss. Kids love it when my husband and I ask them to participate in music or write a collective song. People like to move together and, when they read, they enter the writer's experience.

This is the key to the PFB. Everyone is invited to participate on some level, whether it be graphic novel workshop, a discussion of ethical writing, open mike, or a nostalgic journey with the beat poets.

The theme this year is THE BEAT GOES ON, deadbeat, downbeat, upbeat and heartbeat. There is something for everyone, including mothers at the HEARTBEAT Mother's Day performance in Centennial Square, where the ladies who lay down for us will be treated to music, poetry, chocolates, flowers and free poetry books.

I am hosting that one; and will have the thrill of hearing Light Sweet Crude play songs I have co-written with the band in addition to Tongues of Fire performance poets. Robert Priest, the San Francisco Beats, and more.

One of the perks of being Poet Lareate is that I can get free stuff. Bernard Callebaut is donating the chocolates.

If you are within four thousand miles of Victoria next weekend, y'all come.

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.

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Linda Rogers

Linda Rogers is the author of the novels Say My Name (Ekstasis Editions, 2000), Friday Water (Cormorant Books, 2003) and The Empress Letters (Cormorant Books, 2007). She has also published several collections of poetry, including Love in the Rainforest (Exile Editions, 1996), Heaven Cake (Sono Nis Press, 1997), The Saning (Sono Nis Press, 1999) and The Bursting Test (Guernica Editions, 2002).

Go to Linda Rogers’s Author Page