Safe and protected new Gregorian year to us all, friends. I hope you're emerging from holiday time either rested up and recovered, or ready to rest and recover from the holidays themselves. One of my workshops last month was on that very topic—sharing some grounding and creative self-protection exercises for the wonderful peer mentors at Skipping Stone, one of my favourite community organizations. If you're looking for ways to protect and build the absolutely critical movement for trans rights on the prairies, please consider supporting their work.
My residency with the Calgary Distinguished Writers Program continues! I'm grateful for how they've supported my request to offer an overwhelming majority of online events due to the pandemic. Come log on with me on January 16th for "Parallel Time," a free writing session I'm trying out as an experiment. No facilitation, no prompts, and no group chat! This will be a completely voice-off experience with cameras optional, where we are just getting work done together. Bring those projects you can't seem to carve out time for, or life admin lurking on your to-do list, or just come spend some quiet time with other writers in a way that might cut down on any screen-time burnout you might be feeling. If you benefit from body doubling or do well in online environments with minimal distraction, this might be a good fit for you, too. Register for Parellel Time here.
Now that we're back from the university holiday break, free manuscript consultations are open for booking again! You can sign up for a consultation spot here. These are very chill! Feel free to sign up even if you don't have a draft you'd like feedback on. Come with an idea or a question! If you're feeling stuck, we can talk that through together, too. Last semester was quite packed; since we're booking ahead into the spring now, it's best to sign up sooner rather than later if you're interested!
I'll be back in Calgary in February for a short slate of free, in-person workshops; more news on that soon. Most importantly, I'll be there to celebrate and learn from Harvard professor and legendary author Jamaica Kincaid, the incoming Distinguished Visiting Writer at UCalgary. If you are attending in-person events (while hopefully still masking! if so, I appreciate you!), you could join us for a free evening with Professor Kincaid, hosted by Giller Prize winner Suzette Mayr. If you can't attend in person (maybe because you're choosing to stay home and protect yourselves, or the immunocompromised, disabled, sick, and/or very young people in your lives), you can register for the livestream here, and I'll be glad to know you're online with us.
See you soon! Lots to look forward to now that the calendar has flipped. Desperately wishing us a collectively safer year ahead!