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Pivot on May 23rd- Islam, Arkorful, Mooney + Mutonji

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Game of Thrones who??? It’s the PIVOT season finale this Thursday, May 23rd! We’re thrilled to have Doyali Islam, Faith Arkorful, Jacob McArthur Mooney and T√©a Mutonji reading for this very special Pivot. It will be Michelle and Canisia’s last time hosting (ūüė≠) so you don’t want to miss this one!

Doyali Islam read at Pivot in September 2016. She had no books to sell, but gave away hugs. Now, her second poetry book, ‘heft’ (https://amzn.to/2JkkP8x), is finally available through McClelland & Stewart. The hugs are still free.

Faith Arkorful has had her work published in Peach Magazine, PRISM International, Hobart, without/pretend, Canthius, The Puritan, and the Hart House Review, among other places. This year, she was a semi-finalist in the 2019 92Y Discovery Poetry Contest. She was born in Toronto, where she still resides.

Jacob McArthur Mooney’s three books are The New Layman’s Almanac, Folk, and Don’t Be Interesting all from McClelland & Stewart, plus he was the Guest Editor for the 2015 edition of Best Canadian Poetry from Tightrope Books. From 2012 to 2017, he served as Pivot’s Director and Host.

Téa Mutonji is an author of poetry, prose, and essays. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Feel Ways: An anthology of Scarborough writing, Joyland Magazine, Unpublished City II, The Puritan, Bad Nudes, Minola Review, The Temz Teview, Train Poetry Journal and The Scarborough Fair. Mutonji’s debut collection of short fiction, Shut Up You’re Pretty (Spring, 2019) is the first title published under Vivek Shraya’s newest imprint, VS. Books, in association with Arsenal Pulp Press. Téa lives, writes, and gets lost in Toronto, Ontario.

Meet us in the Tiki Room of the Tranzac Club (an inclusive & accessible venue!). Doors at 8, words at ~8:30. Pivot is generously funded by the Toronto Arts Council and Viewers Like You, so please PWYC (suggested donation $5). One last time, Pivot is hosted by Canisia Lubrin and Michelle Brown Colistro.

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Pivot on May 9th- Kamara, Mohammadi, Walsh + Shafi

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If you caught Pivot in April, you’ll be happy to know that Khashayar Mohammadi will be BACK this Thursday, May 9th to read with the brilliant Yalie Kamara, Matthew Walsh and Hana Shafi!
 
Khashayar Mohammadi is an Iranian-born writer, editor and translator currently living in Toronto and working with the independent publisher Inspiritus Press.
 
Yalie Kamara is a Sierra Leonean-American writer and a native of Oakland, California. She is currently an MFA candidate at Indiana University where she serves as Assistant Editor of Black Camera: An International Journal and is an educator. She holds Bachelors of Arts degrees in Languages and Creative Writing from UC Riverside and a Masters of Arts degree in French from Middlebury College. Kamara is the author of When The Living Sing (Ledge Mule Press, 2017) and A Brief Biography of My Name (Akashic Books/African Poetry Book Fund) to be included in the 2018 New-Generation African Poets: A Chapbook Box Set (Tano). Among her publications, her poetry, fiction, interviews and translations can be found in Vinyl Poetry and Prose, Puerto del Sol, The Blueshift Journal, and Indiana University Press. She was a 2017 Brunel International African Poetry Prize finalist and is a Callaloo Fellow. She will begin her doctoral studies in Creative Writing and Literature at the University of Cincinnati in Fall, 2018. For more: www.yaylala.com  
 
Matthew Walsh has work published in Arc, OAR, The Antigonish Review, Carousel, The Found Poetry Review, and Matrix magazine, among others. Follow Matthew on Twitter at @croonjuice.
 
Hana Shafi is a writer and artist who illustrates under the name Frizz Kid. Both her visual art and writing frequently explore themes such as feminism, body politics, racism, and pop culture with an affinity to horror. A graduate of Ryerson University’s Journalism Program, she has published articles in publications such as The Walrus, Hazlitt, This Magazine, Torontoist, Huffington Post, and has been featured on Buzzfeed India, Buzzfeed Canada, CBC, Flare Magazine, Mashable, and Shameless, Known on Instagram for her weekly affirmation series, she is also the recipient of the Women Who Inspire Award, from the Canadian Council for Muslim Women. Born in Dubai, Shafi’s family immigrated to Mississauga, Ontario in 1996, and she currently lives and works in Toronto. It Begins With The Body is her first book.
 
Meet us in the Tiki Room of the Tranzac Club (an inclusive & accessible venue!). Doors at 8, words at ~8:30. Pivot is generously funded by the Toronto Arts Council and Viewers Like You, so please PWYC (suggested donation $5). Pivot is hosted by Canisia Lubrin and Michelle Brown Colistro.

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Pivot on April 25th- Calhoun, Dalton and Osman

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It finally feels like spring, and to celebrate we’re bringing you three fresh voices (and one fabulous guest host!) Join us and guest host Light Zachary this Thursday, April 25th as we welcome Simone Dalton, Craig Calhoun and Oubah Osman!

Simone Dalton is a writer and social change communicator. She holds an MFA from the University of Guelph, where she received the Constance Rooke and Board of Graduate Studies Research Scholarships. As a memoirist, she explores themes of grief, sense of belonging and place, race, class, and inherited histories. Her work has been published in The Unpublished City: Volume I, a 2018 Toronto Book Awards finalist curated by Dionne Brand, and in Black Writing Matters, edited by Whitney French. For two years, she was the co-host of Guelph’s Speakeasy Reading Series and completed a residency with Firefly Creative Writing studio in 2018. Her play Vows in Welcome to My Underworld is her first foray into theatre. Simone lives in Toronto and was born and raised in Trinidad and Tobago.

Craig Calhoun is originally from a remote patch of Arizona desert but has been living in Canada since 2008. His work has appeared in several North American and European publications. He is also the winner of the Broken Pencil Literary Deathmatch (where he easily defeated the creator of the hit ABC sitcom, ‚ÄúBoy Meets World,‚ÄĚ among others) as well as the Maisonneuve Genre Fiction Contest for Mystery. He currently resides in Toronto.

Oubah Osman is a Somali-Canadian writer from Toronto whose chapbook Hereditary Blue was recently published by Anstruther Press. She has been published in Room Magazine, The Puritan, and Unpublished City Volume II. She is an MFA candidate at the University of Guelph.

Meet us in the Tiki Room of the Tranzac Club (an inclusive & accessible venue!). Doors at 8, words at ~8:30. Pivot is generously funded by the Toronto Arts Council and Viewers Like You, so please PWYC (suggested donation $5).

 

 

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Pivot on March 28th- McFadzean, Mascarenhas, Baudot + Bitek

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Things this good are worth waiting for – after a few last minute substitutions, we’re thrilled to show you the lineup for Pivot this Thursday, March 28th: Cassidy McFadzean, Derek Mascarenhas, Laure Baudot and Juliane Okot Bitek!

Cassidy McFadzean was born in Regina, and earned an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. She is the author of Hacker Packer (McClelland & Stewart 2015), which won two Saskatchewan Book Awards and was a finalist for the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award, and Drolleries (M&S 2019). Her poems have appeared in BOAAT, Event, The Fiddlehead, PRISM international, and The Best Canadian Poetry 2016, and have been shortlisted for the CBC Poetry Prize and The Walrus Poetry Prize. She lives in Toronto.

Derek Mascarenhas is a graduate of the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies Creative Writing Program, a finalist for the Penguin Random House of Canada Student Award for Fiction, and a nominee for the Marina Nemat Award. His fiction has been published in places such as Joyland, The Dalhousie Review, Maple Tree Literary Supplement, Cosmonauts Avenue, and The Antigonish Review. Launching this April with Book*hug, Derek’s debut book, Coconut Dreams, explores the lives of the Pinto family through seventeen linked short stories.

Laure Baudot is an author and martial artist. With Toronto as their base, she travels the world with her adventurous husband and three children. Her work has been published in literary journals including The Danforth Review, The Fertile Source, Found Press, and Prairie Fire. Her recent collection of short stories, titled This One Because of the Dead, is forthcoming from Cormorant Books in April 2019. Ten percent of her writer’s earnings are donated to charity, mostly organizations that help victims of conflict, such as CARE Canada, The White Helmets, and the Children’s Aid Society.

Juliane Okot Bitek is the 2019 writer-in residence at Capilano University. She is a poet and a PhD candidate at the UBC. Her 100 Days (University of Alberta 2016) was nominated for several writing prizes including the 2017 BC Book Prize, the Pat Lowther Award, the 2017 Alberta Book Awards and the 2017 Canadian Authors Award for Poetry. It won the 2017 IndieFab Book of the Year Award for poetry and the 2017 Glenna Lushei Prize for African Poetry. Juliane‚Äôs poem ‚ÄúMigration: Salt Stories‚ÄĚ was shortlisted for the 2017 National Magazine Awards for Poetry in Canada. Her poem ‚ÄúGauntlet‚ÄĚ was longlisted for the 2018 CBC Poetry Prize and a chapbook with the same title, is due out in the fall 2019 from Nomados Press. Juliane is also the author of Sublime: Lost Words (The Elephants 2018).

Meet us in the Tiki Room of the Tranzac Club (an inclusive & accessible venue!). Doors at 8, words at ~8:30. Pivot is generously funded by the Toronto Arts Council and Viewers Like You, so please PWYC (suggested donation $5). As always, Pivot is hosted by Michelle Brown Colistro & Canisia Lubrin.

 

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Pivot on February 28th- Lor, De Leon, Carter and Pierre

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Pivot is BACK this Thursday, February 28th with four powerhouse readers! ūü•äūüŹ†

Prathna Lor is a living poet. Their most recent chapbook, 7, 2, is now out from Knife Fork Books in Kensington Market. They write the love poems you’ve not yet written to yourself.

Adrian De Leon is an Abagatan (Southern) Ilokano writer and cultural educator from Manila by way of Scarborough. He teaches Philippine history and culture in classrooms, museums, and martial arts gyms. While finishing his PhD in History at the University of Toronto, he teaches in the Department of English at the University of Toronto Scarborough. Adrian’s first poetry collection, Rouge, was published by Mawenzi House in 2018. He has just completed his second poetry collection, barangay, and is at work on his first novel. With fellow east-side writers Téa Mutonji and Natasha Ramoutar, Adrian is editing a mixed-genre literary anthology of emerging Scarborough writers.

Kern Carter is a 2x author of a novella Thoughts of a Fractured Soul and his most recent novel titled Beauty Scars. His C.R.Y blog touches on the emotional struggle faced by writers and other creatives. His goal is to inspire readers and impress his fellow writers.

Terese Pierre is a writer, editor and organizer based in Toronto. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in The Hart House Review, Bad Nudes, Verdancies Journal, Cosmonauts Avenue and Train: A Poetry Journal, among others. She has been a submissions curator and editor of the Toronto Public Library’s Young Voices Magazine, and the University of Toronto’s Spectatorial, and she is currently the poetry editor of Augur Magazine, a Canadian speculative and surrealism literature and art magazine. In September, Terese became a co-host of Shab-e She’r, a poetry reading series that emphasises diversity in all forms, and this spring, she will become a co-organizer of Slant, a reading series that emphasizes social justice. Terese lives in Toronto with her family and cat.

Meet us in the Tiki Room of the Tranzac Club (an inclusive & accessible venue!). Doors at 8, words at ~8:30. Pivot is generously funded by the Toronto Arts Council and Viewers Like You, so please PWYC (suggested donation $5). As always, Pivot is hosted by Michelle Brown Colistro & Canisia Lubrin.

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Pivot on January 30th- Tom, Kreuter and Boyle

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Still waiting for a good excuse to brave the cold? Bundle up and come join us Wednesday, January 30th to welcome Nazbah Tom, Aaron Kreuter and Frances Boyle!

Nazbah Tom is a queer Diné. They believe we are always moving towards healing and their work supports that process using somatic theory, practice, and hands on bodywork. As a writer their work focuses on poetry, prose, and film. They are a part of a few anthologies and online journals. They do their best to capture poems and stories haunting them at all hours of the day. As a guest on this land in Tkaronto, their goal is to continue to build community and power with local Indigenous folks who have taken care of this land for thousands of years.

Aaron Kreuter is the author of the poetry collection Arguments for Lawn Chairs, and the short story collection, You and Me, Belonging, which came out this past fall. He teaches and dissertates at York University. He lives in Toronto.

Frances Boyle is the author of one previous book, the poetry collection Light-carved Passages, as well as a chapbook, Portal Stones, which won the Tree Reading Series chapbook contest. Her writing has also received the Diana Brebner Prize and awards in The Great Canadian Literary Hunt. She has pub­lished work in literary magazines throughout Canada and in the United States as well as in anthologies with themes as varied as the films of Alfred Hitchcock and form poetry. Raised on the Canadian prairies, Frances lived on the West Coast for 12 years and now makes her home in Ottawa with her partner, Tim Stanley; they have two grown daughters and a large standard poodle who believes he is a lap dog.

Meet us in the Tiki Room of the Tranzac Club (an inclusive & accessible venue!). Doors at 8, words at ~8:30. Pivot is generously funded by the Toronto Arts Council and Viewers Like You, so please PWYC (suggested donation $5). As always, Pivot is hosted by Michelle Brown & Canisia Lubrin.

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Pivot on January 16th- Polyck-O’Neill, Schmaltz and Bernier-Cormier

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New year, same fabulous reading series! To ring in 2019, we’re hosting the first Pivot of the season on Wednesday, January 16th, featuring Julia Polyck- O’Neill, Eric Schmaltz and Dominique Bernier-Cormier.

Julia Polyck-O’Neill is an artist, curator, critic, and writer. Her writing has been published in B.C. Studies, Feminist Spaces, Tripwire, Touch the Donkey, Fermenting Feminisms (a project of the Laboratory for Aesthetics and Ecology, curated by Lauren Fournier), The Avant Canada Anthology (WLU Press, forthcoming 2018), and other places. She has published two chapbooks, Everything will be taken away (2018) and f*mm* (2016), both with above/ground press. She currently lives in Toronto, where she is completing her SSHRC-funded PhD in Interdisciplinary Humanities.

Eric Schmaltz is the writer of Surfaces, a book of visual poetry and text-art published in May 2018 by Invisible Publishing. His¬†creative work has appeared in periodicals such as¬†The Berkeley Poetry Review, Jacket2,¬†and¬†The Capilano Review¬†and has been featured in galleries in the United States and Canada. Eric’s work was most recently exhibited as part of the symposium for the Philadelphia Avant-Garde Studies Consortium at the University of Pennsylvania. He lives and teaches in Toronto.

Dominique Bernier-Cormier was born in Quebec but grew up in Moscow, Paris and Beijing. His poems have been shortlisted for Arc’s Poem of the Year Award, a National Magazine Award and the Puritan’s Thomas Morton Prize, and he won the Fiddlehead’s Ralph Gustafson Prize in 2017. His first book, Correspondent, was published in fall 2018 by icehouse (Goose Lane Editions). He is currently working on a book of poems about his Acadian ancestor who escaped jail by wearing his wife’s clothes.

Just like last year, meet us in the Tiki Room of the Tranzac Club (an inclusive & accessible venue!). Doors at 8, words at ~8:30. Pivot is generously funded by the Toronto Arts Council and Viewers Like You, so please PWYC (suggested donation $5). As always, Pivot is hosted by Michelle Brown & Canisia Lubrin.

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