Tag Archives: Edmonton

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


After a quiet weekend dabbling in a manuscript and reading, this week I have a couple of writing related events. The first is a workshop organized through my writing group. It is an interesting theme and I’m sure we will have fun with it.

wine

How can I add wine or alcohol to a story to enhance it? Can a drunk add interest to a story? How can I talk about these topics believably in my writing?
And, as for whining – what could that possibly add and how can one whine in writing?
Do you attend workshops? What benefits did they give you?
My second event is the regular writing group for seniors I co-host with another member of my writing group. It is always a fun and enlightening evening. The stories of days past and the experiences these wonderful seniors have lived though are always amazing.
Have you heard stories from your elders? Did you write them down?
Our group’s memoir guide book can help organize memories into a cohesive format utilizing photographs, objects and letters etc. It gives a great kick start to your memoir.
YourLifetimeOfStories
The non-writing event I will attend this week is to see the Cirque du Soleil – Kurios with my daughter on Saturday. really looking forward to it.
 Have you seen one of their shows?

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


Shock up shock I have no events this week – wow that doesn’t happen often. Now what to do with all this ‘free’ time? Well writing of course. I will meet up with an author friend later in the week and probably ‘escape’ to the library one night for uninterrupted writing too.

How does your week look? I have a dog staying until Tuesday so it is nice to walk in the cool of early morning and later night.

I wrote this about my dog a few years ago.

Just Walking the Dog!

The air smells wonderful after the rain, all fresh and clean. The vetch and clover’s scent float like gossamer in the breeze. Drops of water glisten on leaves and grass, leaving wet patches on my feet and legs. The cool is so refreshing after the baking heat of the morning, when I had helped my husband do his lumberjack impression. Hauling branches and logs into the truck, so they can be piled up in the far side of the acreage.

This peaceful walk brings me respite and time to relax without the demands of house, husband and children.

The trials are damp underfoot, the sun dapples through the high branches, gradually making the air more humid as I walk. I watch dancing butterflies of orange and yellow and damsel flies of crimson, burnt orange and emerald green flitting quickly side to side. In front of me the sudden flash of black and white signals the flight of crickets in wave after wave throughout the long grass. As the grass brushes my jeans it leaves little tears of moisture dampening the fabric.

I find a new trail to explore, the earth is wetter here we leave our mark in the sticky mud: paws and shoes. The trial peters out emerging onto a huge earth mound, made by excavators. Looking around for a familiar landmark all I see is the main road I took to get to this off leash area. With no obvious exit, we retrace our steps back to a clearing and find another trial through the birch trees, which eventually brings us back to familiar territory.

Passing the time of day with other walkers, we watch our dog’s engage in the sniffing routine and then part again. Once back to the car park, it’s a bowl of water for my dog and a sip from a bottle for me. I really enjoy this place it gives me time to relax and enjoy the wildlife. One early morning we came across a deer and then a coyote ran across the meadow, quickly chased by my dog until I recall her, just in case there is a pack within the far wood – another story for another time.

Story Slam

Location: The Mercury Room, 10575 114 Street, Edmonton
Event Cost: suggested donation $5 at the door
Contact: Alison Hagan
http://www.edmontonstoryslam.com/
http://www.edmontonstoryslam.com

Story Slam is every third Wed of the month, every month
Competitive story telling event with no censorship. Up to 10 people have 5 minutes to tell a story. 5 random judges are in the audience. Winner takes home the donation hat and total glory.

OPPORTUNITY ALERTS

The Golden Quill Awards. The theme is “Liberation.” $500 first prize. Short fiction, poetry and personal essay categories. Up to 1500 words for prose, 40 lines for poetry. Entry fee $15. Deadline September 15, 2017. 

University of New Orleans Press Lab Prize. A prize of $1,000 and publication of your book-length manuscript by UNO Press for a short story collection or a novel. The selected manuscript will be promoted by The Publishing Laboratory at the University of New Orleans, an institute that seeks to bring innovative publicity and broad distribution to first-time authors $18 entry fee. Deadline August 15.

Writer’s Digest Popular Fiction Awards.  Write Romance, Thriller, Crime, Horror, Science-Fiction, and Young Adult? Short fiction: 4,000 words or less. $20 fee. Grand prize $2500. Deadline October 16th, 2017

What local events do you have coming up?

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


After a busy weekend, I am now into Board meeting week! Firstly, Tuesday will be with the Writers Foundation of Strathcona County meeting. We have our annual Words in the Park to plan and organize for 30th September, this will be our 10th year! So we are endeavoring to make it bigger than ever.

Web site banner WitP 2017_0

As part of the Canada 150 celebrations we are also publishing a book of Canadian themed stories. This project entails reading, editing and approving members submissions. The book will be launched at Words in the Park. We have already voted on a cover – to be revealed at the launch!

book project

My second, board meeting will be on Wednesday for the Arts & Culture Council of Strathcona County. We too will be organizing and planning our event, Culture Days in conjunction with our partners the Writers Foundation. The event is also part of Alberta Culture Days, which is celebrating 10 years. In all a busy time for everyone. We will have artisans and performers throughout the day.

Friday evening I will meet up with a writer friend for coffee/tea after work. It is one of my favorite things to do. Connect and discuss with other writers. Our venue is a local non-profit coffee shop, which incidentally stocks several books from my publisher, Dream Write Publishing.

What are you up to this week?

Other events:

From July 13-16, The Saskatchewan Festival of Words takes place in Moose Jaw, SK, featured authors including Marty Chan, Dawn Dumont, Marina Endicott, Anosh Irani, Jael Richardson, Alissa York, and more.

The Lakefield Literary Festival runs July 14-16 in Lakefield, ON, (near Peterborough), with a line-up including Zoe Whittall, Marni Jackson, Lynne Katsukake, Jane Urquhart, Kerry Clare, Douglas Gibson, Steven Price, Lindy Mechefske, and children’s events with Andrew Larsen and Kari-Lynn Winters. The program also includes Craft Talks for writers.

Add your upcoming events – no matter where you are located!

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


canadadaysouthhuron

This week began with Canada Day and the extra special Canada 150 celebrations on 1st July. My ‘new’ country is so young compared to my ‘old’ country, England. It is unique to see the excitement and pride my fellow Canadians take in their country.

road trip

I am away with my dear friend, Linda in Red Deer for the next three days, enjoying the scenery, wildlife, and relaxing in writing companionship. It has been sometime since we have been able to ‘escape’ and it is certainly appreciated by us both. 

I will miss our writing group’s monthly meeting on Tuesday but as it seldom happens I think I’m forgiven. Someone else can take the reins on my behalf.

Saturday will be my joint author signing with Eva Blaskovic at Audreys Bookstore in Edmonton. We are hoping to draw a crowd to buy books and ask us questions. Preparations have been made, a draw basket created and advertising blasted.

New and Improved Author Signing-page-0

On Sunday 9th July I will be once again attending an annual event for Strathcona County- Savor Strathcona. It celebrates the best independent food and art in our area. I will be doing double duty as Secretary of the Writers Foundation and President of the Arts & Culture Council, luckily the tables are together! 

Savor Strathcona

What are you up to this week?

Other events:

Hylke Speerstra, Meet & Greet

hylke

Hylke Speerstra will be presenting ‘The Comfort Bird’, his new book in English translation.

Monday at 11:00–14:00 at Dutch Delicious – 13232-118th Ave, Edmonton, Alberta T5L4N4

And Author Reading and Book Signing 4 July at 11:00–14:00 at The King’s University 9125 -50 Street, Edmonton, Alberta T6B 2H3

Toys, Bikes and Books Swap
Hosted by Edmonton Chinatown Chinese Library – 9 July at 13:00–17:00 at 9540 – 102 Ave. Edmonton

china

Recycle Book Sale

book sale

8 July at 11:00–15:00
The Village at Pigeon Lake
6b Village Dr RR#2, Westerose T0C 2V0

HAPPY 150th CANADA


canadadaysouthhuron

I’m sharing my story of my first visit to Canada – this will be published in my writing group’s Canada 150 special anthology.book project

My First Taste of Canada by Mandy Eve-Barnett

My first visit to Canada was in the early eighties, a last big vacation before starting up my company, knowing vacations would be impossible for at least a few years while the company grew. I believed, at the time, that it would be a once in a lifetime trip.

                Arriving in Edmonton in late July invaded my senses with big city life. A country girl all my life with only occasional trips to London, UK for art galleries, museums and shows, the buzz of the city around me was hard to acclimatize to – the heat, noise, fumes, people and sirens – all assaulted my senses. Added to this was attending the unforeseen wedding ceremony and reception of a distant cousin. My mind became blurred at names and faces of people I had no real knowledge of before that day. Maybe a few too many glass of cheer didn’t help!

                The next day my Uncle and Aunt took me on a tour of the city sights, I marveled at the height of the buildings – glass and metal reflected the heat and I quickly became uncomfortable. Air conditioning, an unknown phenomenon until then, was soon my best friend. Large department stores all encased in cool aired malls saved me from heat exhaustion. Fashions, ornaments, accents and manners intrigued and delighted me. An evening meal at a nice restaurant satisfied, but a visit to a local club with a younger cousin was more enlightening than first expected. The club looked like many discos of the era and it took me a while to realize the absence of young men. Not knowing my cousin very well I was wary to ask the obvious question. All was revealed once we sat down and the lights dimmed. One after the other male strippers entertained the all female audience. With a room full of excited and tipsy women the doors opened to the young men who had queued outside waiting on nine o’clock. It was certainly an experience!

                My Uncle and Aunt owned a small RV and this was our mode of transport to Vancouver, their home town. Our route would take us through the Rocky Mountains and until I saw those magnificent structures I had no field of reference to their size and magnitude. Used to rolling hills and lush greenery these monoliths in dark steel grey, snow capped and craggy were awe inspiring. Mile upon mile of evergreen firs spread outwards in all directions, rising sharply to the base of the mountains and becoming sparse on the rocky outcrops. Taking it all in was mind blowing; my head turned this way and that at speed trying not to miss a single view, a glimpse of a wild animal or roaring river.

After several hours we took a rest stop in what seemed to me an isolated cabin restaurant overlooking a lake. The food was good, the ability to walk and stretch even more welcome. Just as we were leaving a thundering sound filled the air and the owner of the establishment urged us outside. Fearing something awful was about to happen I stayed close to my Uncle. We stood in awe as an avalanche crashed its way down the mountainside on the far side of the lake. The sound echoed around us, the ground beneath our feet shivered, and our chests felt the shock wave of air as it rushed past. In that moment I understood the absolute power of nature, trees snapped like twigs, huge boulders rolled and were consumed and the landslide of snow and ice crashed into the lake water making a tidal wave. Nothing could stop that power, that motion.

                When the last of the avalanche snow slid downwards, we returned into the restaurant by kind invitation of the owner to celebrate with a glass of champagne. He admitted in the fifteen years he had owned the restaurant it was the first avalanche he had seen. We were there no more than an hour and a half and witnessed such a spectacular event. I will always remember the sight and sound of that avalanche it has stayed with me for decades.

                Our onward journey was not without more adventure however. The temperature dropped quite significantly as we drove further into the Rocky Mountain range and I huddled under a blanket, peering out at the scenery that changed dramatically as the sky became overcast. Snowflakes began to fall much to my surprise but not to my Uncle and Aunt, who assured me it was common in the higher altitudes. The snow fell heavier and the mountains disappeared under a white curtain. Our reduced speed and burgeoned windshield wipers made me anxious but my Aunt comforted me saying my Uncle had driven in such conditions before. Then there was a sputter, a sudden decrease in speed and then all was quiet. The engine died and I saw my relative’s shoulders tense. Now what? Unfurling a map my Uncle plotted his route and estimated our location.

“There is a hotel around the next bend, if I’m correct on our position. We will make it that far.”

   Easing the RV along slowly he inched our way toward the hoped for hotel. At the bend we saw a grey shape materialize and formed into a hotel. Spluttering to the front of the building the RV stalled as if to say my work is done. There were only a couple of vehicles outside the hotel so my Uncle went in to investigate. On his return he advised us the hotel staff were working on a grand opening after a refurbishment and that they were not actually open yet. However, understanding our predicament they made up a couple of rooms for us and one young man helped fix the RV the following morning, allowing us to continue to Vancouver. A place I really loved mainly due to the ocean view and salty air so like home for me.

Canada is now my home and I have come to know a small part of it through incredible road trips with my dear friend, Linda. I will never ‘see’ all of Canada – the continent is just too vast but my experiences and friendships have given me some knowledge of Canada and it’s inhabitants.

Happy Birthday Canada

 

Flag_of_Canada_150-dated_svg

Busy Planning and Friday Fun…


eventsThere seems to be a plethora of upcoming events on my calendar at the moment. Some are writing related but others are with family. These are only the highlights!

This weekend I will accompany my daughter to a reptile show. She has a table and will be selling several lizards of the leopard and crested kind as well as accessories for the maintenance of same. She has prepared a new enclosure in her reptile room (yes it’s in my house and I’m fine with it). She will be purchasing a chameleon – an animal she has wanted for over a decade. If you are in the area why not drop in and discover fascinating creatures. http://www.edmontonreptiles.com/  Sands Hotel, Fort Road, Edmonton, Alberta. Saturday & Sunday.

fall_2014_poster

With Thanksgiving on 13th October – my family will enjoy a meal together in the new home of my son and his girlfriend. We prepared apple pies for the occasion a couple of weeks ago utilizing the bounty of their own apple tree.

THANKSGIVING

 

 

 

 

On 25th October I will be attending Words in the Park  http://words.sclibrary.ab.ca/  launching my new children’s book, Ockleberries to the Rescue. And will of course use the delightful door I purchase some weeks back. As I have a whole table my spare time for the coming weeks will involve positioning my range of books in the best possible way to attract people to my display.

Sprite door 4Book cover

I will divide the table into four so each book has it’s own unique place with relevant display items and promotional materials beside them. Ockleberries with the door and animal ornaments, Rumble with his prizes for the competition winners of hats and T-shirts and special books marks and glowing orb for The Rython Kingdom as well as writing items for Your Lifetime of Stories (memoir workbook).

How is your calendar looking?

QUOTES: 

Until one has loved an animal a part of one’s soul remains unawakened. Anatole France

Pets are humanizing. They remind us we have an obligation and responsibility to preserve and nuture, and care for all life. James Cromwell

FunDay

I thought today’s prompt could be about pets – either some you have always want to own, pets you do own or pets you would never have!

Author Reading Tonight in Edmonton, Alberta – Come and Join Us…


Lisa and Sharon Audrey's launch eviteAlso reading Karen Probert from your new book of short stories, Colouring Our Lives and Natasha Deen from her novel, Guardian.

Meet the authors, ask questions and heart their wonderful words.

Guardian

Colouring Our LivesJust had to share photos from the reading last night – it was a marvelous evening. Lisa Audreys reading 1Mandy Audreys 20AugKaren Audreys 20AugNatasha reading Audreys 20AugSharon reading 20Aug

Loving the Pluvious… 26Dec


Pluvious – definition: of or pertaining to rain : rainy

Fig1

It may sound bizarre to a lot of people but one of the things I miss about England is the rain. Yep, the rain! England gets a lot of rain, hence the ‘green and pleasant land’. As an island surrounded with sea water the formation of rain clouds is a constant.

I should be more precise on what it is I miss about rain. It is the smell of freshly drenched earth and foliage and the actual sound of rain drops hitting the ground and any objects in its path. Watching rain rivulets down a window pane when you are warm and dry is a wondrous moment. Splashes of water rippling outward into infinity.

The majority of precipitation in Alberta, Canada is snow so a rainy day is a treat for the British expats living here. We have actually run outside to stand in it. As I said at the beginning – bizarre!

If you have moved a great distance, what do you miss?

My writing group used a single raindrop as the illustration on the book cover on the history of the group. A single drop causes a ripple effect and that is what one writer, one group can do for others. From a solitary drop the encouragement spreads

Solitary

http://www.dreamwritepublishing.ca/retail/books/solitary-drop

Another book with a raindrop as the theme is this one. I love this little story and it is perfect for a rainy day to read to your children.

raindrop

http://www.amazon.com/Journey-Raindrop-Suzanne-Burkett-ebook/dp/B004F9P84U/ref=la_B0038NJFW0_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1388067915&sr=1-4

Enthusing & Promoting…


Enthuse – definition: to be or become excited or enthusiastic; to show enthusiasm

snow road

I certainly was not enthusing about driving to my hair appointment this morning. We had heavy snow fall over night and there were police warnings regarding low visibility and slick roads. http://globalnews.ca/news/971634/alberta-highways-in-poor-winter-driving-conditions-travel-not-recommended/

However, as an intrepid Albertan, it did not deter me and I drove carefully to my hairdressers. With a new look, I am happy and safely back home. Hence the late post today!

I am enthusing about several events I will be attending in the next few weeks. These local events give me the opportunity to connect with my readers, new and old. They are also a valuable resource for networking as an author and freelance writer.

FUN AND THEN SOME
– AN ALL AGES EDUCATION FAIR AND EXPO!

The first is tomorrow’s Fun and Then Some in Sherwood Park. It is an educational and recreation fair and I will be attending with my publisher, Dream Write Publishing. We have organized all the current children’s books in singles, doubles and Christmas wrapped packages.  Our second role will be  informing the attendees of the Writers Foundation of Strathcona County, its mission, meetings and workshops.

Christmas Market 5

On November 30th, I will be at the Christmas Marketplace in Fort Saskatchewan, again with Dream Write Publishing, promoting the company and the wide range of books available.

 

 

 

header

December 7th will see me promoting myself as an author at Authors for Altruism Charity Book Sale in Edmonton. Part of the money raised will be given to Alzheimer Society of Alberta & North-west Territories and The Rainbow Society of Alberta.

No argument here…


ph-FAC-artintheplaza-2013Argumentative – definition: fond of arguing and disputing

I will take no argument – if you can possibly make it to the Arts in the Plaza today, please do. It is a free event and there is original work by authors, artists, potters, weavers – well you get the idea!

Today’s event is in conjunction with Strathcona Celebrates so there is lots of activities for everyone. A free pancake breakfast is a great way to start the day. Here’s the link : http://www.strathcona.ca/strathcona-celebrates.aspx

Strathcona

Pancake breakfast 8 a.m. – 11 a.m.         Community Centre (401 Festival Lane)

  • Free pancake breakfast supported by Canadian Progress Club, Sherwood Park
  • Free family activities
  • Verve Salon & Spa Ltd. will help you show your pride at their hair zone
  • Stage entertainment from Cooper Pump Record Studios Inc. – stage schedule
  • “Strathcona’s pioneering spirit at 10 a.m.”
  • Storytelling

Official Key to the County Ceremony followed by Roll Past and Parade         In front of County Hall (2001 Sherwood Drive)

Welcoming Tea 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.         In front of County Hall (2001 Sherwood Drive)

  • Enjoy free refreshments and cookies
  • Entertainment provided by Crescendo Music Studios

Strathcona Mounted Troop Musical Ride         1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.         Former Archbishop Jordan Catholic High School (160 Festival Way)

The Mounted Troop is reminiscent of Lord Strathcona’s Horse in the 1920s and 1930s. The 20-horse, 25-member Troop performs the Musical Ride. The ride is drawn from the Regiment’s traditions of the 1920s and 1930s.

Celebration continues with free activities for everyone         12:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.         The former Archbishop Jordan Catholic High School (160 Festival Way)

  • Exhibition of both modern and antique military vehicles and meet the troops (Festival Way in front of Elk Island Catholic School Board)
  • Military activities by Navy League of Canada, 2551 PPCLI Army Cadets
  • Agricultural opportunities by Green Hectares
  • Aboriginal activities and performances
  • Experience life 120 years ago in Strathcona County by Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Village and City of Fort Saskatchewan
  • Zipline
  • Inflatables
  • Family activities by Strathcona County Museum and Education Station
  • Stage entertainment provided by Crescendo Music Studios
  • Face painting and much more

Please note: zipline and inflatables will close between 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. for the Military Musical Ride.

Miok-McCormack Memorial Unveiling         4 p.m.         Festival Place (100 Festival Way)

Official military unveiling ceremony for The Miok-McCormack Memorial located in Broadmoor Lake Park. This memorial is dedicated to the memory of two Sherwood Park soldiers killed in Afghanistan in 2009. This is a community event and everyone is welcome to attend.

Free Movie in the Park and family activities

6 p.m. – 11 p.m. (Movie starts at 9 p.m.)         Former Archbishop Jordan Catholic High School (160 Festival Way). Also includes free family activities from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. Click here for more details.

Food Services         12:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. & 6 p.m. – 11 p.m.         Former Archbishop Jordan Catholic High School (160 Festival Way)

Enjoy great food and refreshing drinks from

  • Royal Treats
  • Funky Pickle
  • Uncle Milts Old Fashioned Rootbeer