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Ottawa's Latest and Greatest on Books & Lit

Launching our special Writers Festival series

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wf-2015-spring-indd

The Ottawa International Writers Festival is one of our city’s treasured gems.  Since first launching in 1997, this special gathering has brought some of Canada’s and the world’s leading writers, comic book creators, playwrights, scientists and musicians to our region. Next week the 2015 spring edition of the festival kicks off and will run from April 22 to 28.  Among the impressive lineup are several authors from the National Capital Region.  Over the next two weeks, Apartment613 will be reviewing several of these local authors in a series of posts.... | Continue reading article

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Ottawa’s Mirror Comics shuts down after five years

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Image taken from Mirror Comics web siteImage taken from Mirror Comics web site

Last month an awful thing happened: Ottawa’s popular Mirror Comics closed its doors and shut down.  Beginning in 2010, artist-writer Dominic Bercier and web guru Allan Isfan founded Mirror Comics to a fair amount of fandom, and hit its stride in 2012 when they released copies of their work at Ottawa Comiccon and noticed people loved what they were doing. Even with the boost in popularity, the duo noticed quickly that didn’t mean they could distribute to a wider audience outside of their hometown.  “Our physical and budgetary realities meant that we... | Continue reading article

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Help PDA Press come to life

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Still from the PDA Press Indiegogo campaign video.Still from the PDA Press Indiegogo campaign video.

One of Ottawa’s newest galleries is asking for help with a new venture that will bring the work of local and Canadian artists and creators to a wider audience. PDA Press, which is part of PDA Projects, has launched an Indiegogo campaign to raise funds for the publication of their first three books, which feature art and writing by contributors both from Ottawa and from across Canada. PDA Projects’ physical space is PDA Gallery, which opened on Elgin St., between the Lieutenant’s Pump and Kochu Sushi, in the summer of... | Continue reading article

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Write On Ottawa: Surviving the flood

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the flood

Starting today, the eBook version of the The Flood by David Sachs will be on sale for $0.99 for a limited time.  For the paperback, use the U.S.-based amazon.com site, as it will be a few weeks before the paper version is available on amazon.ca. The East Coast of the United States didn’t have a chance.  With hardly any time to react, tens of millions of people fled in panic to escape the savage tsunami that would soon destroy countless cities and towns. In New York City, hundreds of refugees... | Continue reading article

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Write On Ottawa: What if kids had it their way?

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dunces

So, we all think being a kid is easy.  Have you ever thought back to the times you felt hopeless in a world ruled by oh-so-rational adults?  This is a BIG issue to live through in middle school!  Not only are you dealing with all sorts of social pressures, your parents or the adults in your life just make this task a little more tedious. When I was in middle school, I thought the Prime Minister’s right-hand person should be a teenager so kids’ wants and needs would be considered... | Continue reading article

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Poetry Week: The verbal equations of King Kimbit

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Photo of King Kimbit courtesy of VERSeFestPhoto of King Kimbit courtesy of VERSeFest

In our final post for Poetry Week, we interview Ottawa’s own Kim Nguyen aka King Kimbit who performed at VERSeFest this weekend. As a testament to the power — and reach — of spoken word, Kim Nguyen, 22, stands less than five-feet tall yet speaks with award-winning conviction. “You wanna know how to rhyme you better learn how to add.  It’s mathematics,” she laughs while reciting lyrics by Mos Def as an example of the hip hop and rap from which she draws inspiration. Numbers, as it turns out, have... | Continue reading article

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Poetry Week: Cameron Anstee’s voyage of discovery

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Photo by Sanita FejzicPhoto by Sanita Fejzic

Ottawa-based Apt. 9 Press published this past fall Five, a poetry collection by five different poets. With the start of VERSeFest this week, we thought this would be a great opportunity to profile each of the writers featured in this poetry collection.  Today we conclude our look at all five wordsmiths by reviewing the work of Cameron Anstee, the founder of Apt. 9 press.  (See part 1, part 2, part 3 and part 4 of this series of five profiles). Cameron Anstee lives and writes in Ottawa ON where he runs Apt. 9 Press and is pursuing a PhD... | Continue reading article

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Poetry Week: Two spoken word artists to be honoured

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Photo of Anthony Bansfield courtesy of VERSeFestPhoto of Anthony Bansfield courtesy of VERSeFest

“Poetry is meant to be read out loud,” says John Akpata, a spoken word poet who was chosen for VERSeFest’s Hall of Honours this year, along with Anthony Bansfield, the founder of Ottawa’s Golden Star Lounge spoken word poetry series. Both are set to be honoured this Sunday, March 29, at 7 pm in a special VERSeFest event, which will see both artists perform their work. Akpata was introduced to spoken word performances when he was a student at Carleton University.  Since then he’s had a successful career as a poet,... | Continue reading article

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Poetry Week: Rachael Simpson’s playful words

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Photo of a Rachael Simpson poem by Sanita FejzicPhoto of a Rachael Simpson poem by Sanita Fejzic

Ottawa-based Apt. 9 Press published this past fall Five, a poetry collection by five different poets. With the start of VERSeFest this week, we thought this would be a great opportunity to profile each of the writers featured in Five.  Today we look at the work of Rachael Simpson, whose poetry has appeared in print and online throughout Canada and the United States.  She lives in Ottawa and blogs at seedandpearl.blogspot.ca. (See also part 1, part 2, part 3 and part 5 of this series of five profiles). Rachael Simpson’s use of repetition with variation is wonderful, especially in “Corrode.” Simply put:... | Continue reading article

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Poetry Week: One-on-one with the talented Pearl Pirie

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pet radish

Ottawa’s Pearl Pirie recently published her third full collection of poetry, the pet radish, shrunken, a wonderful, playful, and funny collection of unforgettable poems.  You will scratch your head, laugh and be happy to think about “the tangerine sunset,” how “I love yous peak on sundays,” and “because I love you. if I didn’t, think/ about it, why would I be yelling?” She will be reading at VERSeFest on Friday, March 27 at 7 p.m. alongside Marilyn Dumont, JC Bouchard and Stevie Howell. Don’t miss the opportunity to hear her... | Continue reading article

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