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 involved
five four events, one per month from May until September (the June event had to be canceled due to the record-shattering heat dome). Each event featured two or three guest poets who 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.
May 27: Sadiqa de Meijer, Luke Hathaway, Sue Sinclair
July 15: Aidan Chafe, Tanja Bartel, Diane Tucker
August 11: Dallas Hunt, Tolu Oloruntoba, Shaun Robinson
September 11: Jen Sookfong Lee, Barbara Nickel, 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 were small in-person gatherings at various parks throughout the Lower Mainland.
I’m Sad I Missed It.
I’m sad, too! We had a really great time! Check out my “Readings” page for future events.