Note: Due to the, uh, weirdness of publishing contracts, I talked to her about this book…but the second in the series, It All Falls Down, is already available!
Summer fun is exhausting. Yet I manage to plug away at the new book! In the meantime I understand The Captain of Kinnoull Hill is finally going to be reviewed…I’ll obviously be posting that when it happens 🙂
In the meantime, this week’s show. I spoke with David Layton about his new book The Dictator. He’s a successful author of fiction and memoir, a creative writing teacher, and if you want historical context, the son of famous poet Irving Layton (and, fun fact, Leonard Cohen was his godfather). Enjoy!
Hey all! On today’s show I’ll talk about my own personal impression of gritLIT, and then feature an interview with Trevor Cole, one-time Hamilton resident, HarperCollins author and the man behind The Whisky King: The remarkable true story of Canada’s most infamous bootlegger and the undercover Mountie on his trail. Now that’s a serious title.
Rocco Perri was one of Hamilton’s – and, indeed, Canada’s – most notorious gangsters. He was also notoriously good-natured and gregarious, and most of the city loved him. A great read!
As for gritLIT, it was a highly entertaining weekend. We managed to sneak in some interviews with Leslie Shimotakahara and Rebecca Rosenblum, which we’ll get to in future weeks. I also managed to stay up way too late talking to the likes of Denise Donlon (one of my music journo heroes, former host on The New Music, telling me Tom Waits stories for cryin’ out loud…NBD, though, right?). Stayed up even later with the immensely entertaining Lesley Livingston, doing Guy Gavriel Kay impersonations and telling stories until far too much wine was drunk. Look forward to next year’s festival already!
That’s not really the title of it, but hey, it’s better than just putting “Episode 18.”
My dear friend and fellow author Sherri Vanderveen (look her up, read her books!) has many friends in the Canadian publishing business. Through her contacts, Get Lit was able to set up a round-table discussion between myself and three fantastic individuals – Alana Wilcox from Coach House, Jennifer Lambert from HarperCollins, and Barbara Berson from the Helen Heller Agency.
Coach House has a fascinating space. If you weren’t aware, they actually print their own publications in-house. Alana gave us a tour through the printing presses new and old, and it was amazing; if I’d been thinking, I would have filmed the whole thing for you. I did not, but here’s a great Quill and Quire piece that shows you the exterior and some of the space inside. We sat in the coffee room and chatted for about forty-five minutes. It’s such a fantastic room, accessible via narrow wooden steps that clonk and creak in the background of the interview (an audio detail I love, by the way), lined by hundreds of books.
The conversation is enlightening. These are people in different positions in the business – an indie publisher, an international publisher, and a literary agent/freelance editor. They each have different yet dovetailing perspectives on the state of publishing in Canada, on what they’re looking for in a book, and on what writers should and should not do when trying to get published.
Enjoy, and come back next week for part two!