Now that two years have passed (wow!) since the release of By the Rivers of Brooklyn, I don’t update this site as often as I used to, but I’m so glad when I hear that people are still reading and enjoying the book, and I’ve made a couple more book club visits in recent months that have been fun, as always. This weekend, July 10 and 11, I’m going to be in Halifax promoting my soon-to-be-released novel at the Atlantic Booksellers’ Convention, and I’ll be signing copies of Brooklyn there at Coles on Monday from 1-3.
I think people who enjoyed Brooklyn will like my new novel. It’s another historical fiction set in Newfoundland, though it’s not connected with Brooklyn in any way. It begins in a small Conception Bay outport in 1904, and follows the lives of two young women who both dream of getting away from their small town to live bigger lives — but only one of them gets the opportunity. It was inspired by a collection of old postcards found in the family home in Coley’s Point. It’s called That Forgetful Shore and will be released by Breakwater Books this fall.
Two By the Rivers of Brooklyn events to look forward to this summer:
Tuesday, July 20, 1-3 p.m.: Signing at the Heritage Shop on Water St. in St. John’s.
Saturday, August 21, 8:00 p.m.: Reading at the Writers at Woody Point festival, along with Joseph Boyden and musician John K. Samson. (Go ahead, ask me how excited I am to be on the same stage with Joseph Boyden!!!!)
One thing I still love to do whenever the opportunity arises, is visit book clubs who are discussing By the Rivers of Brooklyn. I have had some lovely visits with book club groups in the last few months and am always happy to do more. If you have a book club that’s discussing Brooklyn, check out the “More” tab on the top of this page for some suggested discussion questions, and if you’re within driving distance of St. John’s and would like me to visit your group, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org .
I have a few Rivers of Brooklyn-related news items to share:
By the Rivers of Brooklyn received a silver medal in the IPPY Awards! Until the other day I didn’t know what an IPPY was, but it’s the Independent Publisher’s Book Awards, and By the Rivers of Brooklyn was runner-up for Best Regional Fiction (Canada: East). You can see the (very long) list of awards here. Gold medallist in that category was the very talented Newfoundland author Lisa Moore. It’s an honour to be in such company!
Also, the website for Writers at Woody Point 2010 is now updated and you can find me on there! Speaking of people it’s an honour just to be listed with, I’m extremely honoured that I’ll be reading on Saturday night, August 21, along with the brilliant Joseph Boyden of Three Day Road and Through Black Spruce fame. There’s a fantastic line-up of both writers and musicans for that festival and I’m very glad to be a part of it.
For those who were curious, no, I didn’t win the Best Atlantic Published Book award — that honour went to the very deserving Field Guide to Newfoundland Birds. I really enjoyed attending the Atlantic Book Awards in Halifax, though, and seeing some of the brightest and best in the Atlantic literary world. We have such talented writers in this part of Canada! If you haven’t read many Atlantic Canadian (especially Newfoundland!) books, this is the year you should start reading them.
By the Rivers of Brooklyn has been nominated for Best Atlantic Published Book in the Atlantic Book Awards, to be announced in Halifax on April 14. I’ll be there for the awards ceremony, so wish me luck!!
Some By the Rivers of Brooklyn events coming up here in St. John’s for 2010 (I’ll update as more are planned):
Thursday, April 1, 7:00: I’ll be reading and discussing By the Rivers of Brooklyn at the Water Street Book Club at the Gallery Space, Heritage Shop of Newfoundland and Labrador, 309 Water Street. Admission is free, and tea and coffee are provided!
Wednesday, May 5: The public library book club at the A.C. Hunter Library will be discussing By the Rivers of Brooklyn as their monthly selection, and I will be their guest. As far as I know this event is open for anyone to drop in, but for more information you can call the library at 737-2133.
And, looking a little further ahead, I will be one of the featured writers at the Writers at Woody Point festival, August 18 – 22.
… just for my blog-readers!
Thanks for your support and enjoyment of By the Rivers of Brooklyn. Watch for more news and events in the new year.
One bit of shameless self-promotion I really do enjoy is visiting book clubs. It’s a very different dynamic from a reading or a signing, where you’re essentially trying to sell the book to people who may not have even heard of it. As a writer, it’s great to sit down with people who’ve actually read the book and talk about what they liked and didn’t like, which characters they identified with, and to answer any questions they might have.
I visited one local book club in October and am looking forward to visiting with another in November. I’m pleasantly surprised to learn how many book clubs are active in St. John’s. It’s encouraging that in our electronic day and age, people still get together to read and talk about books. In the new year, my book will be one of those available as a “book club kit” through the local library, and it will also be one of the featured selections for MUN’s Lifelong Learning book club where they discuss the works of local authors.
If you’re part of a book club and are interested in reading By the Rivers of Brooklyn, click on the “MORE” tab above, where I’ve added some questions for book club discussion. And if you’re in St. John’s or anywhere nearby, I’d be happy to visit with your book club if you like!
I’m back in town after summer vacation and back to the book biz (among other bizzes). A couple of events worth noting in September:
Sunday, Sept. 20, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. Signing at Costco, St. John’s.
Thursday, Sept. 24, 7:00 p.m. Reading with Tina Chaulk at the Newman Wine Vaults in St. John’s.
Sunday, Sept. 27, 1:30 p.m. Reading at The Word on the Street in Halifax.
Sunday, Oct. 11: Signing at Chapters, St. John’s.
My cross-Newfoundland mini-book-tour is over, and what a great week it was. My daughter and I drove all the way to Corner Brook, then back home by way of Gander and Trinity. I met so many interesting people and had wonderful conversations about By the Rivers of Brooklyn. And, of course, I got to sell and sign lots of copies of the book.
I wish I could thank everyone who helped us out, and everyone who bought a copy of the book, by name, but that would take forever! I’m so grateful to the store owners at Newfoundland Emporium and Island Treasures in Corner Brook, The Bookworm in Gander, and Trinity Mercantile in Trinity. The library staff in Corner Brook and Gander were also helpful, and Darrell Squires from the Corner Brook library (with his wife Dara) went above and beyond the call of duty in inviting us over for supper. I also had some great talks with media people, including Dorothy King of CBC Corner Brook (that link will take you to an mp3 of the interview) and Randy Larcombe of CBC Grand Falls, and Andrew Robinson from the Gander Beacon.
Best of all, of course, were the readers and book-buyers I met, like the tourists in Trinity who were so interested — especially Roberta from Brooklyn, who was so excited to see a book about Brooklyn, NY, in Newfoundland!
Next week (July 27-31) I’ll be on the road, promoting By the Rivers of Brooklyn in Corner Brook, Gander, Trinity and possibly a few other places. Confirmed times and places are listed below, and I’ll update as more information becomes available. If you’re a blog-reader I haven’t met yet from outside the St. John’s area, I’d love to see you at any of these events.
Tuesday, July 28
12:00 – 1:30: Signing at Newfoundland Emporium in Corner Brook
2:30 – 4:00: Signing at Island Treasures in Corner Brook
7:00 – 8:00: Reading at Corner Brook Library
Wednesday, July 29
2:00 – 4:00: Signing at Bookworm in Gander
7:00 – 8:00: Reading at Gander Public Library
Thursday, July 30
3:00 – 4:30: Reading/Signing at Trinity Mercantile