This little chapbook I made is now in its second printing, and just in time for Ottawa’s VERSefest later this month! My gratitude to all the readers who love and collect chapbooks and to micro-publishers like the amazing above/ground press.
Many thanks to Calgary poet, editor, and Touch the Donkey contributor Nikki Sheppy for reviewing my chapbook After the Battle of Kingsway, the Bees, in the latest issue of filling Station (“the small press issue!”) A snippet:
Bees, not moths, figure in Renée Sarojini Saklikar’s butter-coloured chapbook, After the Battle of Kingsway, the Bees—from above/ground press. The 15-page suite is an excerpt from volume 2 of Saklikar’s ongoing long work about place and identity, thecanadaproject—from which her first book, Children of Air India, un/authorized exhibits and interjections, also draws…”
You can read the review at above/ground press HERE.
Delighted to announce that my chapbook After the Battle of Kingsway, the bees–, was shortlisted for the 2017 bpNichol Chapbook Award:
“The prize, awarded annually since 1985, goes to the author of the best poetry chapbook – in the estimation of the judges – published in Canada in the previous year and submitted for consideration. It is named in honour of the late poet, novelist, mentor, and micropress publisher bpNichol (1944–1988).
The $4,000 prize purse, donated by an anonymous benefactor, makes this the richest annual literary award for a poetry chapbook, specified as a collection of no more than 48 pages. The publisher of the winning title also receives $500, thanks to an annual donation by Toronto writers Brian Dedora and Jim Smith.
Judges Helen Guri of Montréal, Québec, and Hoa Nguyen of Toronto, Ontario, chose the finalists from more than 60 submissions from across the country.
The finalists for the 2017 bpNichol Chapbook Award are:
Dana Claxton. The Patient Storm. above/ground press
Doris Fiszer. The Binders. Tree Press
Stevie Howell. Summer. Desert Pets Press
Sonnet L’Abbé. Anima Canadensis. Junction Books
Nanci Lee. Preparation. FreeFall Literary Society of Calgary
Renee Sarojini Saklikar. After the Battle of Kingsway, the bees. above/ground press
The winner will be announced at 2 p.m. on November 18, 2017, at the annual Meet the Presses Indie Literary Market, open from 12 noon to 5 p.m. at Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre, 427 Bloor Street West, in Toronto. The Market introduces the public to independent literary publishers of books, chapbooks, magazines, ephemera, and recordings generally not available in bookstores. The free event is curated by Meet the Presses, a volunteer literary collective devoted to showcasing the work of independent publishers of fiction, poetry, and creative non-fiction.”
ABOVE/GROUND PRESS READINGS (Hosted by Heidi Greco)
4:15 pm Stephen Collis (Adopted by: book’mark, The Library Store)
New Life (above/ground press $4.00)
4:20 pm Renée Sarojini Saklikar (Adopted by: Hager Books)
After the Battle of Kingsway, the bees (above/ground press $4.00)
4:25 pm lary timewell
Odds Are (above/ground press $4.00)
Date: September 25, 2016
Location: Vancouver Public Library, Central Branch, The Underground
OM: You seem to have come at self-promotion from every possible angle. What has been most effective in putting your work, and the work of others, in front of readers?
rm: I think the most effective thing has been the fact that I don’t rely solely on one way in which to inform people. Some might notice via my email list, others might via FB or blog, while even others via Twitter. For some, it’s the physical table of books at a small press fair, whether Ottawa or, occasionally, Toronto. I often mail chapbook handouts to book fairs in other parts of North America as well, something I’ve been doing for a decade or so now. I sent fifty copies of a new Renée Saklikar above/ground press chapbook as handout at the recent Buffalo Small Press Book Fair, and fifty copies of the new lary timewell above/ground press chapbook to Louisiana, for Marthe Reed to hand out at the New Orleans Poetry Festival. I like the idea of books making it to events that I can’t, and I know if I attempt to sell physical copies through someone else, it just becomes more complicated, especially with authors that most audiences at those events wouldn’t know too much about…”