Sunday, 5 January 2014




Brandon University * January 10 & January 24





Everyone Welcome, Free Admission, Books for Sale


*Red Carpet* Literary Celebration
(revised program)

BLUE SWING   Friday, January 10  

11:00 – 12:00   Literary Readings     BU Library Gathering Area
           Kim McCullough, Laurelyn Whitt & Katherena Vermette
1:30 – 4:00 Creative Writing Master Class    BU Library Archives
            Kim McCullough & Katherena Vermette

7:00 – 10:00   Literary Readings and Panel    BU Louis Riel Room
            Jazz by Slow Spirit
            Readings     Kim McCullough & Katherena Vermette
            Literary Panel   “Literature as Love Song”

                                  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

CROW NEST   Friday, January 24

10:30 – 12:00    Literary Readings     BU Library Gathering Area                 
              Joanne Arnott & Staged Reading from Crow Nest,
                        with Darrell Racine & others

1:30 – 3:00    Creative Writing Master Class   BU Library Archives
              Joanne Arnott

***Creative Writing Master Classes:  Open to anyone interested in honing  creative writing skills.  Please come to the BU Archives (2nd floor of the BU Library) with paper & pen, an active imagination & an open mind!      Limited to the first 20 people.   Please tell your colleagues, students & friends.



Joanne Arnott is a Canadian Métis/mixed-blood writer & arts activist, originally from Manitoba, now nestled on the west coast. Her first book Wiles of Girlhood won the League of Canadian Poets’ Gerald Lampert Award for “best first book of poetry in Canada” (1992). She has published essays and poetry in anthologies, and seven further books, including My Grass Cradle (Press Gang 1992), Mother Time: Poems New & Selected (Ronsdale 2007), and A Night for the Lady (Ronsdale 2013). Active with the Aboriginal Writers Collective West Coast, she volunteers with The Writers’ Union of Canada and The Writers’ Trust, and is an active blogger. Watch for Halfling Spring: An Internet Romance (poetry, Kegedonce, Spring 2014).

Kim McCullough has published reviews and commentary on a number of literary websites. Clearwater is her first published book of fiction, just out with Coteau Press. She is currently working towards her MFA in Creative Writing at UBC. Originally from Regina, Kim now teaches junior high language arts and drama in Calgary. She also leads various writing workshops for students of all ages, including a writing class for women in recovery from trauma.

Darrell Racine is Métis from the Turtle Mountains in Southwestern Manitoba. He learned to tell stories from his father who was a trapper and hunter. He holds a Ph.d from Oxford University and teaches in the Department of Native Studies at Brandon University. He has published two plays with Dale Lakevold, Stretching Hide and Misty Lake, which have received several awards; Stretching Hide won the Theatre BC Canadian National Playwriting Competition, and was produced by Theatre Projects Manitoba in Winnipeg, to a full house and critical acclaim.  His screenplay Crow Nest recently won the prestigious Praxis National Screenwriting Award at SFU, which includes an opportunity to develop the screenplay with directors and producers of international repute.  He was featured as the keynote speaker at the Praxis Centre for Screenwriters in the School for Contemporary Arts at SFU; his talk was titled “Oral Culture and Narrative Style: A Dialogue with Darrell Racine.”
Katherena Vermette is a Métis writer of poetry, fiction and children's literature. Her first book of poetry North End Love Songs (J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing 2012) won the Governor General’s Award for Poetry, and some of the poems landed on the front page of the Winnipeg Free Press, surely a first in the history of newspaper publishing in Canada!!   She also received the Lena Chartrand Poetry Award from Contemporary Verse 2.  Her upcoming project The Seven Teachings Stories is a children’s picture book series (forthcoming 2014 with Portage and Main Press). Her poetry and fiction have appeared in several literary anthologies and literary magazines, including Manitowapow: Aboriginal Writings from the Land of Water, edited by Warren Cariou and Niigonwedom Sinclair, and the Exile Book of Native Fiction and Drama, edited by Daniel David Moses. Katherena Vermette lives in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, where she is the mother of two teenage daughters, where she is also completing a graduate degree in Creative Writing at UBC (long distance program) – the most illustrious student in the history of the program ever!!  

Laurelyn Whitt is an award-winning poet, whose poetry has appeared in numerous journals in Canada and the US, including Nimrod International, The Tampa Review, Puerto Del Sol, The Malahat Review, PRISM International, Rattle, Descant and The Fiddlehead Review. Her poetry collection Interstices (Logan House Press, 2006) received the Holland Prize for Poetry in the US.  Words for Relocation (Will Hall Books 2001) received the Norma O. Harrison Chapbook Award. a long dream of difference (Frith Press 2001) received 2nd prize in the Frith Open Chapbook Competition.   Her new collection is Tether, just out from Seraphim Editions.  Dr. Whitt is a professor of Native Studies at Brandon University.  She completed her doctorate at the University of Western Ontario. Her academic monograph Science, Colonialism, and Indigenous Peoples:  The Cultural Politics of Law and Knowledge was published by Cambridge University Press in New York in 2009. 

she wants to
open her arms
wide enough
stretch them out
like an elm’s long branches
to catch
a thousand birds
and hold them close

Katherena Vermette, “treegrr”
              North End Love Songs (2012)

Thank you most of all to our illustrious guest writers for coming to Brandon & sharing your new writing & creative insights with us.   Thank you to the Manitoba Writers Guild, the Brandon University Dean of Arts, the BU Library, the Department of Native Studies, the Department of English & Creative Writing, the Indigenous Peoples Centre, the BU Bookstore, the BU Students’ Union, J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing Co., Ronsdale Press, Seraphim Editions, Coteau Books, Root Sky Productions, & our gracious community donors for generous financial & in kind support.  Thank you for to the Manitoba Métis Federation (SW region), the Brandon Friendship Centre & the Brandon Folk Music & Arts Society for promoting the event.  Thank you to the following people for contributions & assistance of various kinds:  Alex Beshara, Betty Braaksma, Amber Clark, Glen Kirby, Trish Kotz, Dr. Della Lee, Roberta McKinnon, Lisa Murray, Darrell Racine, Katie Solbeck, Bruce Strang, Audrey & Darrell Tiessen, Laurelyn Whitt & Erlin Zurawski.

We hope you enjoy our Celebration – & don’t forget to buy the books!!

                Di Brandt and Dale Lakevold, BU HAWKWEED Literary Forum

                                                      *  *  *  *  *  *  *  * 

The newly established Brandon Works In Progress Cabaret is hosting its first biweekly cabaret evening at the Park Community Centre on Friday, January 24, from 7:00 to 10:00.  Both Joanne Arnott & Darrell Racine & his actors will be featured at this event, along with musicians & other performers, TBA.  Please come to the Brandon Works In Progress Cabaret for more adventurous literary & creative arts fun!!  Admission $8.  Food & drinks available. 

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