How do you launch a book at the tail end of a pandemic? Who the heck knows! But with my new poetry collection, Strangers, coming out, I had to try to come up with an answer. Obviously, a big, in-person gathering (my preferred option!) was off the table. So I thought, why not split up that one big event into many small, safe ones, and in the process create space for other poets caught in the same predicament? So, the “Strangers Summer Series” was born!
The series will involve five events, one per month from May until September. Each event will feature two guest poets who have published books during the pandemic (plus Sue Sinclair, who somehow snuck in there!): Aidan Chafe, Sadiqa de Meijer, Jen Sookfong Lee, Tolu Oloruntoba, Diane Tucker, Tanja Bartel, Dallas Hunt, Shaun Robinson, Barbara Nickel and Molly Cross-Blanchard.
The first event, on Thursday, May 27th, was online, free and open to all. You can watch the recording of my online launch here.
The rest are small in-person gatherings at various parks throughout the Lower Mainland. Those events will also be free, but will require pre-registration to ensure that the number of attendees stays well within provincial health guidelines. Confirmation of your attendance, and the event’s exact location within the given park, will be sent in the weeks leading up to the event.
The in-person events will be both COVID and weather dependent, and details around those events may change. All in-person events will BYOFCOB (Bring Your Own Folding Chair Or Blanket). We will provide hand sanitizer, books for sale, and socially-distanced good cheer.
Just Let Me Register Already!