Find out how writers think
An Interview with Elizabeth Bachinsky
CF: In this issue of CV2 we are exploring what might lay at the “root of voice;” influences such as culture, life experiences, geography, interests. I realize to talk about where writing comes from is not always an easy thing to pinpoint, and that it can change, but at this point in your career what would you say is “at the root of your voice”?
EB: I write, primarily, to please myself, so the voices in ...
An interview with Jeramy Dodds
Clarise Foster: Congratulations on your recent nominations for the Gerald Lampert Award, the Griffin Prize and on winning the Trillium Prize for poetry — those are huge accolades for a first book. How does it feel now that there is a bit of distance between you and the adrenaline that goes with awards? Have your feelings about your writing changed at all by these experiences? Do big awards create huge ...
An Interview with Tom Wayman
Sharon Caseburg: A few years back you edited The Dominion of Love: An Anthology of Canadian Love Poems (Harbour Publishing, 2001). It proved immensely popular, necessitating a second print run soon after—what is it about love that draws people to write (and read) about it?
Tom Wayman: The Romantic era in English-language poetry— poetry as "the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings," as Wordsworth ...
An Interview with Jim Nason
Clarise Foster: The Fist of Remembering, published by Wolsak and Wynn in 2006, is your second collection of poetry. If Lips Were as Red, published in 1991 by Palmerston Press, was your first. What was publishing your first collection of poetry like in comparison to your second? What was the inspiration behind If Lips Were as Red, which is a very intriguing title?
Jim Nason: I attended York University ...
An Interview with Jan Conn
Sharon Caseburg: In addition to being an award-winning poet, you are also a research scientist and geneticist. Given your varied subject matter and the execution of many of your poems, you obviously see a relationship between science and poetry. How do you define this relationship?
Jan Conn: I am a very visual thinker, so I think of a Venn diagram (two overlapping circles), with areas outside the overlap ...
An Interview with Steve McOrmond
Sharon Caseburg: Your first collection of poetry Lean Days (Wolsak and Wynn, 2004) was shortlisted for the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award. What kinds of pressures did you feel in working on Primer on the Hereafter?
Steve McOrmond: Any pressures I felt were more internal than external. When I sit down before a blank page, I feel the presence of all the poets who have gone before. When you’re engaged in ...
An Interview with Charlene Diehl
Clarise Foster: Does working in the medium of music change your expectations of what or how you write a poem?
Charlene Diehl: I suspect I’m like a lot of other writers in that I’m often impatient with my own voice. One of the qualities that has irritated me is a certain tidiness (I can hear my friends laughing) which really interferes with the emotional charge I’m interested in getting at. To me, a ...
An Interview with Carla Funk
CV2: What is your process for preparing a manuscript for submission? What is most important about creating a package of work for a publisher?
Carla Funk: In my experience, I’ve only ever sent out sample selections from the manuscript—20 pages of poetry from a collection I’m working on. I choose poems that give a range of voices and tones, and, obviously, I’ll choose the poems I feel are strongest and ...
An Interview with Alana Wilcox, Editor-in-Chief of Coach House Books
CV2: What got you interested in book publishing, and why have you chosen book publishing as a career?
Alana Wilcox: Like many people, I fell into publishing by some combination of accident and inevitability. At university, I worked on a number of campus literary journals, a few of which were printed at Coach House; I was fascinated by the process. After graduating with a Master’s degree in English, ...
An Interview with Alison Calder
Sharon Caseburg: If you could be something other than a university professor, what would you be?
Alison Calder: If I were independently wealthy, I’d take my husband Warren and the cats and move to some small piece of land on one of the Gulf Islands, where I’d bake bread and make jam and raise sheep and spin my own yarn. Back in the days when it looked like neither Warren, who also is a professor, nor I ...