>>From Magazines Canada
JUNE 02, 2015 – Ontario’s Type Books has been named Magazines Canada’s Retailer of the Year for 2014.
A neighbourhood bookstore on bustling Queen Street West in Toronto, Type opened in April 2006 at a time when few other bookstores were starting up. The store has been devoted to magazines from a wide array of distributors and publishers, and has been committed to Canadian magazines from the beginning.
This past year, their famous window designer Kalpna Patel helped Chickadee magazine celebrate its 35th anniversary. Their staff, as is customary with Toronto indie bookstores, is made up of artsy types: from writers (Derek McCormack, Kyle Buckley, James Lindsay) to small record label owners (the busy Lindsay ran Pleasence Records) to magazine publishers (Serah-Marie McMahon of Worn), among others.
Their extensive art book collection makes Type a natural fit for bestsellers Border Crossings andCanadian Art. Indeed, the Winnipeg publisher of Border Crossings Meeka Walsh tells us, “Whenever I’m in Toronto, I make sure to visit Type!”
In 2014, in addition to giving Chickadee the front window treatment, the store also helped with in-store promotions for Canadian Art and generously provided the setting for Magazines Canada’s short film, Anything Can Happen at a Magazine Stand. Three Magazines Canada staffers, two actors and a crew of a dozen took over the store after closing to film the video against the backdrop of Type’s magazine rack. The romance and warmth of the store was the perfect setting for the video’s magazine love story.
The Magazines Canada Retailer of the Year Award recognizes the vital role retailers play in the Canadian magazine landscape, and is awarded annually to an outstanding client of Magazines Canada’s distribution service who cultivates this connection between consumers and their Canadian magazines. Congratulations to Type!
>>From The Writers’ Union of Canada
The Writers’ Union of Canada (TWUC) has released today a summary report from its latest income survey of Canadian writers. Devaluing Creators, Endangering Creativity contains the very bad news that writers in Canada are making 27% less from their writing than they were making in 1998 (when last surveyed to this extent). What’s more, a full 45% of those surveyed indicated they are working harder in order to earn that lower amount.
The Writers’ Union believes these results represent a cultural emergency for Canada. For 81% of respondents, income from writing would not allow them to live above the poverty line, and the average writer’s income ($12,879) is a full $36,000 below the national average. This despite the fact that writers have invested in post-graduate education in large numbers.
“This is not a sustainable situation,” said TWUC Chair Harry Thurston. “If we want a strong and diverse publishing and cultural industry in Canada, it’s essential that creators are reasonably rewarded. Everyone — governments, corporations, institutions, and individual consumers — have a part to play in fairly compensating writers for the content they expect, need and enjoy.”
Similar findings have emerged from recent income surveys in the U.S. and the United Kingdom. Writers’ incomes are in steep decline across the English-language publishing industry. Changes to contracts and publishing practices (declines in royalty percentages and advances on sales), industry consolidation, as well as worldwide pressure on professional creators to work in a disastrously weakened copyright environment are all likely contributors.
“The effect of weaker copyright protection in Canada is clearly indicated,” said TWUC executive director, John Degen. “Writers traditionally cobble together their income from many sources. Copyright royalties are a key part of that income mix, and our survey clearly shows that income slipping away from Canadian writers.”
Worse still, Devaluing Creators, Endangering Creativity, shows an embarrassing gender gap in writers’ incomes in Canada, with women writers earning just 55% of the income earned by their male counterparts.
The Writers’ Union of Canada believes there are near- and long-term solutions to this emergency. TWUC has proposed tax incentives, strategic investments and regulatory changes to the federal government. Through the International Authors Forum, TWUC is also helping to lead the international discussion on contract best practices for writers.
>>From the Writers’ Trust of Canada
Toronto – May 26, 2015 – The Writers’ Trust of Canada has announced Alessandra Naccarato as the winner of the RBC Bronwen Wallace Award for Emerging Writers. The award spotlights Canada’s most talented developing writers, giving them much needed funding, exposure, and mentorship opportunities, and has a strong track record for discovering and promoting the brightest young writers in Canada.
Naccarato won the $5,000 RBC Bronwen Wallace Award for Emerging Writers for her poetry collection “Re-Origin of Species.” She has previously won the public vote for the 2014 CBC Poetry Prize and Event magazine’s 2014 Creative Nonfiction Award. Her writing has appeared across Canada and the United States, and she has toured nationally and internationally as a spoken word artist. She is currently completing an MFA in creative writing at the University of British Columbia.
The award recognizes writers who are under 35 and unpublished in book form, and alternates each year between poetry and short fiction. It is supported by the RBC Emerging Artists Project, which invests in up-and-coming artists to help build their professional careers. The award was presented at an event at Toronto’s Royal Conservatory of Music hosted by author Tanis Rideout, who was a finalist for this prize in 2001.
A jury composed of poets Fiona Tinwei Lam, Rachel Rose, and Nilofar Shidmehr selected the winner from 136 submissions. Their full jury citation reads:
Alessandra Naccarato’s poems are visually powerful and sensually charged. Her imagery is as unexpected as it is memorable. These are poems adept at evoking the textures and sensations of place, even as they pay careful attention to sound, to the music of the line. Ranging from the sting of personal loss to navigating landscapes full of promise, Naccarato’s poetry interrogates the place where the personal meets the wild.
The winning and nominated poetry collections are available for free download on iBooks at iTunes.com/BronwenWallace.
“Alessandra Naccarato joins a stellar list of winners of an award known for identifying the upcoming stars of Canadian literature,” said Mary Osborne, Executive Director of the Writers’ Trust of Canada. “We look forward to watching her career flourish and celebrating her future successes.”
“The RBC Bronwen Wallace Award for Emerging Writers provides unique opportunities for young writers to gain audiences, recognition, and mentoring support,” said Shari Austin, Vice President, Corporate Citizenship of RBC and Executive Director of the RBC Foundation. “We are proud to support the Writers’ Trust of Canada through this award, and want to extend our sincere congratulations to all of the finalists, and to this year’s winner Alessandra Naccarato, on such a significant achievement early in her writing career.”
>>From PEN Canada
TORONTO, May 26, 2015 – Writer, artist and environmental activist Franke James will receive the inaugural PEN Canada/Ken Filkow Prize at PEN Canada’s Ideas in Dialogue event, June 2.
Introduced in 2014 in memory of Kenneth A. Filkow, member of PEN’s Canadian Issues Committee and former Chair of the Manitoba Human Rights Commission, the annual award is presented to an individual or institution in Canada who has shown courage in freeing information and ideas from restraint or interference.
James discovered she was under censure from the Canadian government while attempting a European tour of her visual essay on climate change. The Federal government cancelled her funding, and through freedom of information requests James was able to prove that the cancellation occurred because “the artists’ work dealt mostly with climate change, and was advocating a message that was contrary to the government’s policies on the subject.” James shared her story inBanned on the Hill: A True Story about Dirty Oil and Government Censorship (2013).
PEN Canada presents James with the inaugural PEN Canada/Ken Filkow Prize to reward her tenacity in uncovering an abuse of power, and commitment to fostering a national conversation in the face of censorship.
“James’ struggle shows what lengths the government will go to in order to suppress dissent on key policy issues,” said William Kowalski, chair of PEN Canada’s Canadian Issues Committee. “It shows what certain leaders will try to get away with when they think no one is watching, and it shows just how important one voice can be when it comes to speaking the truth.”
The award, valued at $1000, will be presented by Filkow’s son-in-law, Brian Borzykowski, and is funded by an endowment from Philip Slayton and Cynthia Wine.
>>From the Ontario Library Assocation
TORONTO, ON (May 13, 2015) – The votes are in! Over 250,000 children have participated in the Ontario Library Association’s (OLA) annual Forest of Reading program and have helped to choose the best Canadian authors and illustrators of our time. The awards were presented on May 12 and 13 at the Toronto Festival of Trees, a “rock star concert for authors” hosted at the Harbourfront Centre.
2015 FOREST OF READING WINNERS:
The 2015 Blue Spruce Award™ Winner: The Day My Mom Came to Kindergarten by Maureen Fergus, illustrated by Mike Lowery
The 2015 Silver Birch Express Award® Winner: Kung Pow Chicken #1: Let’s Get Cracking! by Cyndi Marko
The 2015 Silver Birch Fiction Award® Winner: The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier
The 2015 Silver Birch Non-Fiction Award® Winner: Annaleise Carr: How I Conquered Lake Ontario to Help Kids Battling Cancer by Annaleise Carr, Deborah Ellis
The 2015 Red Maple Fiction Award™ Winner: The Rule of Three by Eric Walters
The 2015 Red Maple Non-Fiction Award™ Winner: The Last Train: A Holocaust Story by Rona Arato
The 2015 White Pine Award™ Winner: Rush by Eve Silver
Lauréat du Prix Tamarac 2015: La plus grosse poutine du monde by Andrée Poulin
Lauréat du Prix Tamarac Express 2015: Guiby – Une odeur de soufre by Sampar
Lauréat du Prix Peuplier 2015: Le voleur de couche by Nadia Sévigny, AnneMarie Bourgeois
Every October, the Forest of Reading releases a nominated list of titles for each Forest of Reading award category. Children read the titles through their school library, public library, or on their own, and vote on their favourite titles in April. Through this unique program, children are inspired to read for the love it and are given the power to choose the best authors for their age group.
Congratulations to all our award recipients! To view a full list of the winners and honourable mentions, please visit www.accessola.com/forest.