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Poetry Week: The fragile equilibrium of Justin Million

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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 Five.  Today we look at the work of Justin Million.  (See also part 1, part 2, part 4 and part 5 of this series of five profiles). Justin Million is currently living and writing in his hometown of Peterborough, Ontario, while commuting to Pickering, Ontario for work at a sporting goods store.  Million’s work has appeared in Poetry Is Dead, ottawater, The... | Continue reading article

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Poetry Week: House Dreams’ journey of self-discovery

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HouseDreams

House Dreams Brick Books, 2014 By Deanna Young   House Dreams begins with an epigraph from Carl Jung.  It comes from Memories, Dreams and Reflections, co-written with Aniela Jaffé.  It describes a personal dream — sometimes called Jung’s House Dream — that came to him at a time when he was examining the unconscious.  The psychoanalyst finds himself in an unfamiliar house.  He descends stairs to the ground floor and finds everything much older.  Pushing on, through darkness and a heavy door, he finds a stone staircase and continues his descent.... | Continue reading article

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Poetry Week: Spotlight on Jesslyn Delia Smith

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Photo by Sanita FejzicPhoto by Sanita Fejzic

This past fall,  Apt. 9 Press published Five, a poetry collection by five different poets. With the start of VERSeFest this week, we thought this was be the perfect opportunity to profile all five writers featured in this collection.  Today we look at the work of Jesslyn Delia Smith, an Ottawa-based author whose work has appeared in ottawater, the Bywords Quarterly Journal, The Steel Chisel, and In/Words Magazine.  (See also part 1, part 3, part 4 and part 5 of this series of five profiles). The most captivating aspect of Jesslyn Delia Smith’s poems, and the most... | Continue reading article

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Ottawa Creatives: Haneen freedomwriter Alhassoun

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Haneen Alhassoun. Photo courtesy of House of Paint.Haneen Alhassoun. Photo courtesy of House of Paint.

Haneen Alhassoun was 9 years old when she began writing poetry, in Arabic, about her homeland of Palestine. She wrote so many poems that her mother used to tease her, calling her names of Palestinian politicians. For Haneen, poetry was a means of expression that, at that young age, she wasn’t taking seriously and, eventually, she stopped writing. Inspired by having seen Apollo the Child perform his poems at her elementary school, Haneen began writing poetry again. And in the 8th grade, her teacher Shauna Pollock invited two spoken word poets... | Continue reading article

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Poetry Week: The versatile pen of Jeff Blackman

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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 Five.  Today we look at the work of Jeff Blackman.  (See also part 2, part 3, part 4 and part 5 of this series of five profiles). Jeff Blackman works as a research analyst in Ottawa and tries to finish poems when we can.  He used to edit The Moose & Pussy, once Ottawa’s best... | Continue reading article

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Poetry Week: VERSeFest to showcase Canadian and international poets

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Photo of Yves Turbide and Avonlea Fotheringham by Pearl Pirie.  Taken at the Versefest volunteer drive, Pressed Cafe, March 2, 2015.Photo of Yves Turbide and Avonlea Fotheringham by Pearl Pirie. Taken at the Versefest volunteer drive, Pressed Cafe, March 2, 2015.

Matt Jones, the artistic director of VERSeFEST 2015, is unexpectedly calm as we sit down on Saturday morning for coffee near Elgin Street.  It’s only a few days away from the opening of Ottawa’s annual poetry festival and he acknowledges that a few pieces haven’t come together yet (noted later in the article) but he is confident that the theme for VERSeFEST has been achieved: “This year we’ve become much more robust about our outreach program . . . and expanded our presence,” he says, noting that 63 poets and... | Continue reading article

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Welcome to Poetry Week

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Photo by Nick Kenrick courtesy of Flickr (creative commons)Photo by Nick Kenrick courtesy of Flickr (creative commons)

If you are a lover of poetry then this coming week will bring a smile to your face.  VERSeFest, Ottawa’s annual poetry festival, starts on Tuesday, March 24, and runs until next Monday, March 30. To help celebrate this gathering of talented wordsmiths, Apartment613 is launching today Poetry Week, which will include extensive coverage of both VERSeFest activities and local poets from the National Capital Region. Our week-long series of stories begins on Monday with a post from Kenneth Ingram that provides an overview of what audience members can expect... | Continue reading article

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Write On Ottawa: Faces in strange places

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All photo by Matt Edwards.All photo by Matt Edwards.

Do you identify as a “Kidult”? Have you heard of That Faces Book? If not, you’ll want to keep reading because according to editor/photographer Matt Edwards, That Faces Book is perfect for you. And no, we’re not talking about the social media site. So what is it? Simply put it’s a book about faces in the strangest of places, and Edwards wants to share them all with you. In order to do so he’s started a Kickstarter campaign to get his photo book printed and share what might be the... | Continue reading article

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Write on Ottawa: YA novel Mosaic is a success

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mosaic

Mosaic, Deborah Jackson’s sixth young adult novel, involves young lovers, pirates, murder, ghosts and hockey; in short, something for everyone.  The Ottawa-based writer has structured a suspenseful, action-filled novel which will appeal to an older teen audience. Erin Rocheford, the co-protagonist, is the 17-year-old daughter of a former NHL player.  She plays hockey on mixed teams and aspires to stardom until a car accident shatters her body and her dream.  As the novel opens, she and her parents and younger sister are going to a Sanibel Island, Florida, resort, so... | Continue reading article

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Librarian in Residence: #YOWHumanLibrary returns this Saturday

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A Metis Woman in conversation during a former Human Library experience in Ottawa.A Metis Woman in conversation during a former Human Library experience in Ottawa.

Jessica Green is a book addict and library card holder since the age of 3. She’s a librarian at the Ottawa Public Library and currently the Apartment613 Librarian-in-Residence, sharing a compendium of literary thoughts and tips. On February 21st, you can participate in one of the most unique library events: the Human Library. The fourth edition of the popular event will happen in library branches all across the Ottawa Gatineau area as for the first time, the Bibliothèque municipale de Gatineau is joining in this event along with the Ottawa... | Continue reading article

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