Thursday, April 4, 2013

Regina Readings: Naomi K Lewis, Lynn Gidluck, Bridget Keating

Naomi K. Lewis. Photo © Shelley Banks, all rights reserved.
Naomi K. Lewis reads...
Oops - She's not with the Book Awards.
She's from Alberta! © SB

The recent Saskatchewan Writers Guild Signature Reading Series featured Naomi K. Lewis, with her collection of somewhat absurb and totally entertaining short stories, Know Who You Remind Me Of (Enfield & Wizenty).

Also reading: Lynn Gidluck and Bridget Keating, shortlisted authors for the 2013 Saskatchewan Book Awards — Lynn, for Non-Fiction, with Visionaries, Crusaders and Firebrands (James Lorrimer and Co.), and Bridget, for Poetry, with Red Ceiling (Hagios Press).

I met Naomi, who lives in Calgary, at a writing retreat a few years ago, and it was great to see her again!

And good to meet Lynn and see Bridget again — good luck to both of you.


I realize these seem to be somewhat bizarre events for many people I know. They ask:
  • How do readings work?
  • Do you have to pay? 
  • Why do you go?
  • Why do you take so many pictures? 

Lynn Gidluck. Photo © Shelley Banks, all rights reserved.
Lynn Gidluck reads... (The proper use of the banner,
with a nominated author.) 
© SB

Bridget Keating. Photo © Shelley Banks, all rights reserved.
Bridget Keating, also nominated
for a book award... 
© SB

Naomi K Lewis. Photo © Shelley Banks, all rights reserved.
Finally! The right banner for
Naomi K. Lewis, reading for SWG. 
© SB 
To answer:

It works very simply... There's a host who does the introductions and provides coffee, tea, water or wine — and sometimes cakes! Then the author reads or talks about her work, and engages the audience in conversation.

The cost? Sometimes, for big events such as the Moose Jaw Festival of Words, you will have to pay. (And sometimes, for the wine, as well, if it is on offer.) Usually, however, local readings are free.

And I go to support the writers I know and learn more about their current work; I also go to see friends who are in town, to meet new writers and to be exposed to new work... But the main reason I like readings? Because it's great to hear the actual live voice of the author presenting their work. That's fun. (Check the bar above for a link to upcoming Regina readings. Try it. You might like it, too.)

As for the pictures, two answers... I have a half-life (or maybe quarter, or eighth) as a photographer, so I like taking pictures. I also believe strongly in the arts, which in general are hugely under-promoted — especially on the literary side... and especially in my former world, the mainstream media. I think there's value in sharing a little bit about some of our amazing Saskatchewan (and Canadian) authors.


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