Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Alteration to Schedule, Surrey Muse: Val's Poems Read Early

night walk by elizabeth mcclung of SCREW BRONZE

Doesn't sound like much of a news flash but if you were thinking of not going on Friday because you are not able to stay up (or out) late in the evening, this could make the difference in whether you go.

It's been decided to read Val's poems at the beginning of the evening rather than reserving them for the end, when the Open Mic usually occurs. So the info again is:

There will be a Tribute Gathering for Valerie with various performers at City Centre Library in Surrey, room 418, behind the Surrey Central SkyTrain station, on Friday, 24 October from 5:30-8:30 PM.

Thanks, Surrey Muse!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Valerie B-Taylor's Celebration of Life

Valerie beautifully launching Eileen Kernaghan's "Sophie, In Shadow" in the midst of her health challenges.

We will be celebrating Valerie's life together

on Saturday, 8 November 2014

from 2 PM till 8 PM
Presentation at 3:30 PM

1928 West Broadway
Vancouver, BC
Near Maple (east of Arbutus)

We love you, Valerie! Thank you for being a Sunburst and a Loving Friend!

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Goodbye to a Friend

Dear friend and writer Valerie B-Taylor died while we were having fun at VCon, unaware that, far from getting better during her stay at hospital, she was letting go of her life. It is a very sad parting, and I so wish I had had the chance to say goodbye.

Valerie was filled with humour and compassion. She was audacious and bold in her writing and her life; we called her seat in our writers group The Naughty Seat because of what she brought to it so many times. Yet she also brought encouragement, joy, deep sorrow, fierce protectiveness, and a wild intelligence that I will miss for years to come.

Goodbye, dear one. Thank you for your love and wisdom. Many blessings on your journey.

Photo from New West Writers

Valerie was, among other supportive roles in the writing community, the president of New West Writers. This is something she posted on their site:

V.B.-Taylor (formerly Valerie P. Aelbers)

It is in that moment, that very moment, when my mind, spirit, and body converge that I know I am a writer. When story moves through me; when story translates through text onto paper another voice unheard.
V. B.- Taylor

The video above shows Valerie as she receives a Distinguished Poet/Writer Award (WIN Literary Festival) presented by Ashok Bhargava and Mabel Elmore, MLA, in Richmond, 2013.

There will be a Tribute Gathering for Valerie with various performers at City Centre Library in Surrey, room 418, behind the Surrey Central SkyTrain station, on Friday, 24 October from 5:30-8:30 PM.

Thanks to Eileen Kernagahn, our leader at the Kyle Center Writers Workshop, for making space for us to grieve and celebrate Valerie today, and to Eileen Mackenzie for bringing in her written memoir of Val, which opened the gates for all of us to speak who needed to.

Sitting In For SF Canada

Well, this is fun. Kristene Perron of SF Canada sent in this photo of me staffing the SFC table at VCon 39.

Casey at the SFC Table at VCon 39. Photo courtesy Kristene Perron

About SF Canada
SF Canada was founded in 1989 as Canada’s National Association for Speculative Fiction Professionals, and was Incorporated as SF Canada in 1992.
SF Canada exists to foster a sense of community among Canadian writers of speculative fiction, to improve communication, to foster the growth of quality writing, to lobby on behalf of Canadian writers, and to encourage the translation of Canadian speculative fiction. SF Canada supports positive social action.
“Speculative fiction” is understood by members to include science fiction, fantasy, horror and any other other weird fiction that invokes a sense of wonder.
SF Canada aims to provide a structure for socializing and maintaining links among members throughout Canada, from coast to coast to coast, in both official languages, and to promote the publishing and sale of works created, edited, and published by its members.
SF Canada provides free webhosting to members on the association website, and maintains a private internet listserver—an online discussion group that is unmoderated and completely uncensored! SF Canada also organizes critique groups and meetings, and operates an online bookstore to publicize and promote its members and their books. SF Canada members are eligible for non-profit health and dental insurance through the Writers’ Coalition Program in cooperation with the Writers’ Union of Canada, and have access to home and auto insurance at lower than market rates.
To qualify for SF Canada membership, an author must have published for payment at least two short stories or three poems in commercial markets, or received a royalty advance for a novel. An editor must have contracted for payment at least one book manuscript or three issues of a magazine. Other Canadians with a substantial professional interest in SF (specialized publishers, academics, librarians) will be considered for membership on a case by case basis. A one-year membership is worth $30; the fixed renewal date is on Canada Day, but members who join after January 1 are credited with the July 1 renewal. Two members living at the same postal address qualify for a common $30 rate.
For more information, or if you wish to apply to become a member, please contact us.

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

VCon 39

Survived the con, and a good time was had by all. Somehow I was always in a whirl--I still see tracks when I turn my head.

I especially hanging out with the kids--Frank, Jules, and Flora--and brother-in-law Nick, doing the Writers Workshop on Sunday, and the Turkey Readings shortly thereafter. Also enjoyable was reading with Eileen Kernaghan, she from her new novel Sophie, In Shadow, and me from "Posture of the Infinite", published in Red Tuque Books' Canadian Tales of the Fantastic Vol. IV.

Eileen won her third Prix Aurora Award on the weekend, to my (and I gather her) delight. From Wattle and Daub Books, who published her book of poetry:

Congratulations to Wattle and Daub Books author Eileen Kernaghan who this weekend won the 2014 Prix Aurora Award for Best Poem or Song in English for “Night Journey: West Coast”, published in Tesseracts Seventeen: Speculating Canada from Coast to Coast to Coast, EDGE (2013).

For more of her excellent speculative poetry, her collection Tales of the Holograph Woods: Speculative Poetry can be ordered here.

Now, a little photographic evidence, and I'm back to the rest home.

En Route to VCon 39

Rose and Her Companion

Human Battleship

Bug-Eyed Monster

Action Shot
Best In Show! (And Man, Did She Deserve It.)