Remembering Poetry and a Pint

The recent Poetry and a Pint event at Bushwakkers Brew Pub was a great idea from Saskatchewan’s current Poet Laureate, Gerald Hill. At least, that’s what I’ve heard from many of the people who dropped by to have a drink and listen to local Regina writers read their new work.

And so, in memory of the event (I’m in the process of updating my writing blog, so yes, I am remembering all of this), my favourite photo. Of me, at least. Even if it isn’t really a photo of me.

Eric Greenway, a prose writer, reading at Poetry and a Pint. (I’m the one with the pint in the background.)


New Voices: SWG Mentorship

Apprentice Reading 2016
Join us, for readings by some of the best new Saskatchewan writers!

The New Voices reading, with apprentices in the Saskatchewan Writers’ Guild 2016 Mentorship Program, is one of my favourite literary events.

This year, I am honoured to host the Apprentice Readings.

When: April 28, 2016, at 7:30 p.m.
Where: The Artesian, 2627 13th Avenue, Regina.
Who: Jason Heit, Ashleigh Mattern, Katerina Nakutnyy, and Dora Mushka.

Heit, Mattern, Nakutnyy and Mushka have all been working for four months with professional mentors. I’m really looking forward to hearing them!

This event is always fun because it’s a chance to hear very new work and gain fresh insights into the direction that writing in Saskatchewan may take in the near future. It’s also a chance to meet new and established writers, so if you live in Regina and have been wondering what this writing world is all about, please drop by and say hi!

I was in the SWG Mentorship Program several years ago, and worked on short fiction with Dave Margoshes, a Saskatchewan writer whose path first crossed mine way back when we were both staff reporters with The Sun in Vancouver, B.C. (I would have been very surprised then if someone had looked in a crystal ball and told me that I’d move from the realm of ‘just-the-facts’ to ‘whatever makes a good story’… And yes, I do have a collection of short stories that I plan to expand and send out to greet the world in print…. One day…)

The New Voices reading is FREE, and all are welcome. For more information, click the poster at right, or visit


Poetry and a Pint!

Saskatchewan Poet Laureate’s Poetry & Pints

Bushwakker: Poetry and a Pint on May 21, 2016.
Bushwakker -great poetry will be on offer with great beer at Poetry and a Pint, May 21, 2016.

Join the Saskatchewan Poet Laureate, Gerald Hill, as he MCs an afternoon of poetry and pints as part of Bushwakker’s 25th Anniversary celebrations.

Hosted by Gerald Hill, this event also features readings by Shelley Banks, Courtney Bates-Hardy, Eric Greenway, Brenda Niskala and Coby Stephenson, who will take to the stage to share their electrifying work.

Admission is free, though you’ll have to buy your own beer. Join us for a pint and poetry!

When: Saturday May 21, 3:00 pm
Where: Bushwakker Brew Pub, 2206 Dewdney Ave, Regina.

Reading at the Humboldt Gallery

When I was at the writing retreat in mid-February, I had the opportunity to read at the Humboldt District Gallery with other retreating writers.

The event marked the opening of an art exhibition by students of St. Peter’s College instructors, artists Clint Hunker and Grant McConnell, and included a reading by St. Peter’s College writing instructor, Barbara Langhorst.

And what a great idea, to blend visual and literary, images and words. (And song, too, from Tara.)

My thanks to the organizers, and to all who attended. (And to Caelan for taking a close-up shot of me before the readings began… We took many to test the lighting, and still faced challenges. Flash-free galleries can be fun…)

Reading at the Humboldt District Gallery: Barbara Langhorst, Shelley Banks and Bruce Rice; introductions by St. Peter's College art instructors (l&r) Grant McConnell and Clint Hunker; welcome by gallery representative (c).
Reading at the Humboldt District Gallery: Barbara Langhorst, Shelley Banks and Bruce Rice; introductions by St. Peter’s College art instructors (l&r) Grant McConnell and Clint Hunker; welcome by gallery representative (c).
Writers David Carpenter and Tara Dawn Solheim (top), with Saskatchewan Writers’ Guild representative Caelan Reilly (bottom).


Looking forward to reading tonight at Regina’s Vertigo Series!

I’m looking forward to reading tonight, Feb. 8, 2016, at the Vertigo Series in Regina, Saskatchewan! I’ll post some pix of the event on later this week… For now, here’s the poster:

February 8, 2016: Regina, SK, reading
There are always talented writers reading and talented musicians playing at the Regina Vertigo Series. If you live in the city, watch for posting on Facebook, and drop by! It will be fun!


Guest Blogger for Gail Anderson-Dargatz

Featured on Gail Anderson-Dargatz's blog
Shelley Banks, and the writing of Exile on a Grid Road: Featured on Gail Anderson-Dargatz’s blog

I’m delighted to share that I’m the current guest blogger featured on the website of Canadian writer and mentor Gail Anderson-Dargatz!

Drop by, and read my thoughts on the Writer’s Eye, versus the I of the Writer.

I worked with Gail when I was studying for my MFA in Creative Writing at the University of B.C., and have kept contact with her since. (I’m looking forward to reading her new novel, The Spawning Ground, which will be published by Knopf Canada this fall.)

It was fun to connect via her website, as part of the community of writers. (Thanks, Gail!)

Reading Exile on a Grid Road in Saskatoon

And now, pictures from our readings in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, in early November… (Shelley Banks with Exile on a Grid Road, Tara Gereaux with Size of a Fist and Jan Wood, Love is not Anonymous.)

My thanks to everyone who came out to McNally Robinson Booksellers for the reading — what a great crowd!

Shelley Banks (Thanks, Gord Hunter!)
Jan Wood (Love is not Anonymous)
Tara Gereaux (Size of a Fist)
Marcy Hildebrand, of McNally Robinson Booksellers
Shelley Banks, with Saskatoon writers and friends, Theodora Ofosuhima and Danica Lorer
Saskatoon writers and friends, dee Hobsbawn-Smith and Dave Margoshes
The audience! They had to keep bringing more chairs!
At the signing table… At left, Tara talks to Stephanie of Thistledown Press.
Tara Gereaux, Jan Wood and Shelley Banks
Okay, I confess — this is the first time I have even been featured on a menu
McNally Robinson’s display of featured authors.

The Future is Always Beginning

the-future-is-beginningI am honoured to be asked to participate in the new “Poet Laureate Emerging Writers Reading” on November 25 at 7 p.m., at the Art Gallery of Regina, 2420 Elphinstone Street.

My thanks to Saskatchewan’s poet laureate, Judith Krause, for hosting “The Future is Always Beginning”!

I’ll be reading with Cassidy McFadzean, dee Hobsbawn-Smith and Jim McLean. For an insight into the range of work you’ll hear, here are short bios, from the Saskatchewan Writers’ Guild.

Continue reading The Future is Always Beginning

Risks and Reading: Exile in Big River, Saskatchewan

Reading in Big River, Saskatchewan, was an adventure for several reasons. First, I’ve never been to that part of the province. Then, there were friends I hadn’t seen for some time. And finally, I took the risk of reading “Kiss of Knives,” a suite of poem about breast cancer from Exile on a Grid Road. And  yes, that was a risk.

It’s always good to take risks as a writer, to push yourself further and into new material. But reading that material can be another matter…

Some scenes from the Big River reading, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015, which featured Jan Wood’s launch of Love is not Anonymous, with readings by Tara Gereaux (Size of a Fist) and Shelley Banks (Exile on a Grid Road), all from Thistledown Press.

Writers in Big River – from Regina, Big River, Prince Albert: Lynda Monahan, Laurie Muirhead, Veryl Coghill, Carla Braidek, Tara Gereaux, Shelley Banks, and Jan Wood.
The audience at the Big River Library, while Jan Wood reads.
MC Carla Braidek.
Shelley Banks, with moving book
Tara Geraux
Jan Wood
Gord Hunter and Grant Wood
Veryl and Carla
Carla and Shelley
Tara and Gord