Saturday, March 21, 2009

Andy Jones' adaptation of The Queen of Paradise's Garden Reviewed in the Globe

Among several new childrens books reviewed this week by Susan Perren is the latest release from Running the Goat Books.

This week: Useful ducks and fine frogs
Globe and Mail Update
March 20, 2009

Adapted by Andy Jones, illustrated by Darka Erdelji, Running the Goat Books and Broadsides, 44 pages, $18.95, ages 6 and up

Even the endpapers of this book — faded flowery wallpaper studded with ancient family photographs — are a delight to the eye. Surreal watercolours of this and that — birds in a tree, strange human figures — dot the book, fine illustrations for a delectable retelling of a fine old Newfoundland tale.

The reteller is writer and actor Andy Jones, a founding member of Newfoundland's CODCO troupe. With this provenance, you might expect something original and quite fine; you won't be disappointed.
In the fine old folk tale/fairy tale tradition, this story involves three brothers who, alarmed by their parents' rapid aging, leave home in search of a magic fruit that will reverse the decline. They're told by "Old Blind Pew" that such a thing exists, but "it only exists in the Queen of Paradise's garden, and that is three miles this side of the end of the world."

It probably won't come as any surprise to hear that Jack, the least likely brother, the kind brother, conquers all. What he conquers is told in a most satisfactory and satisfying way, in the sprightliest, most musical prose, Newfoundlandese in which nary a "g" can be found danglin' from the end of a word.

Read the rest of Susan Perren's article here.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Some Background on Paddy "Iron" McCarthy and Frank Holden's one man show "It's Like a Dream to Me"

Paddy "Iron " McCarthy of Renews is,at 105, one of the oldest living Newfoundlanders and the last witness to the Florizel disaster of February, 1918.

On Paddy's Weekend in Renews, March 14 and 15, Paddy "Iron" will come home to Renews to tell his story on stage and in pictures.
Writer/performer Frank Holden will give two performances of his new one-man play, " It's Like a Dream To Me," at the Regina Mundi Center,Renews, Saturday night and Suanday afternoon, March 14 and 15.
The two-day event will also include a book launch, visual art displays, a dance, storytelling, singing, and music by local performers.
Frank Holden is known for earlier one-man plays such as "The Irish Caruso," and "Judge Prowse Presiding."
He says he got the idea for "the Paddy play" while writing a review of "It's Like a Dream to Me," Bertha Thorne's 2003 book of the same name about her father's long and varied life in and around Renews.
"Paddy tells his stories in the colorful and jaunty, but direct irish newfoundland tongue that I heard growing up. My family are half southern shore and half St.John's west. I hadn't met Paddy "Iron" yet, but when I read the book, I knew exactly what he sounded like and how he thought."
And Holden also saw Paddy McCarthy as more than yet another stage-worthy character.
" There was so much in it of growing up catholic, of dances and pranks, of work and risks and travel on land and sea, of home and community life, that Paddy's story is the life of rural Newfoundland in miniature.
" It is practically a social history radiating out from Renews. Paddy's life has lasted the 20th century.
" It has bridged pioneer outport life to the modern one we now have as a canadian province with communications, roads, schools, hospitals and mobility."
Paddy was born nearly three months before the Wright brothers flew the Kittyhawk in 1903, and he had a flying lesson in 1976.
" If I can hang on for another spell, " he quips " I might buy meself a ticket and go to the moon yet."
"It's Like a Dream To Me," also the name of Frank Holden's stage play with photos, stories and songs, was performed between 38 and 40 times for visitors and tourists at Trinity's "Festival in the Bight" last summer of 2008.
"After that many previews out of town," says Holden,"I'm ready to open in Renews. Our next stop is a show at St.Patrick's Mercy Home, where 105 year old Paddy will, please God, still be there to see himself."
For tickets and information on Paddy's Weekend, March 14 and 15, call 363-2940, 363-2568 or 363-2486.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Paddy "Iron" McCarthy - one man play - It's Like a Dream to Me by Frank Holden in Renews this weekend

Paddy "Iron" McCarthy
"It's Like a Dream to Me"
a one-man play
written and performed by Frank Holden
A part of the Paddy's Day Weekend in Renews
Saturday March 14 , 7 p.m.
Followed at 10 pm by a dance
Admission for the evening $10
Sunday March 15, 2 p.m.
Following a performance by the Baltimore School Band
Followed at 5 pm by a series of local performers, Irish Stew and cash bar.
Admission for the day $10
All of the above at Regina Mundi

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

March Hare Readings in St. John's, Newfoundland tonight, March 11

March Hare Readings in St. John's, Newfoundland tonight, March 11

8pm, Masonic Temple

Host: Randall Maggs

Emcee:Randall Maggs & Pat Byrne

Boyd Chubbs
Dominique Gaucher
Randall Maggs
Dave Panting
Ellen Power
Billy Ramsell
Susan Sinclair
Michael Winter
Kathleen Winter
Jim Payne

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Andy Jones, Darka Erdelji and Running the Goat Books & Broadsides launch The Queen of Paradise's Garden Sunday Mary 8, St. John's

Running the Goat Books & Broadsides
is celebrating the publication of its newest book: The Queen of Paradise's Garden, a traditional Newfoundland Jack Tale adapted by Andy Jones and illustrated by Darka Erdelji.

Sunday, March 8

The Masonic Temple
6 Cathedral St., St. John's
3 to 5 pm.

Andy will give a brief reading. Some of Darka's original illustrations will also be for sale. For details about the book, visit

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Agnes Walsh reading in Toronto on March 10

Agnes Walsh, Ryan Kamstra and Lara Bozabalian at the Art Bar Poetry Series

Agnes Walsh, Ryan Kamstra and Lara Bozabalian are reading at the Art Bar Poetry Series at Clinton's, 693 Bloor Street West, Toronto, on Tuesday, March 10 at 8:00 p.m.
Map to Clinton's

Agnes Walsh was born and raised in Placentia, Newfoundland and now lives in St. John's. She released her first collection of poems, In the Old Country of My Heart, in 1996. In 2003 an audio edition of In the Old Country of My Heart was released with poems read by the author and music by George Morgan and Simone Savard-Walsh. In 2006 she was named the first poet laureate of Newfoundland and Labrador. In her latest collection, Going Around With Bachelors (Brick Books), Walsh explores the past in the present; Ireland and Portugal in Newfoundland; and the Cape Shore.

Ryan Kamstra is a writer of poems, fiction and songs. His first book, Late Capitalist Sublime (Insomniac Press) was published in 2002. As a musician he is known as Scratch Kamstra and his band Tomboyfriend has an album "don't go to school" due out this year. He will be celebrating his latest poetry book, Into the Drowned World (Insomniac Press).

Lara Bozabalian has been writing and performing her poetry for the past eight years. She is the author of four chapbooks. She was a runner-up in the 2007 Luminato/City of Toronto Poetry Slam and a semi-finalist for the 2008 Toronto Poetry Slam Team. She founded a Spoken Word Festival for high school students across York Region and leads teacher workshops in order to bring and Spoken Word to classrooms. She recently represented Canada at the Individual World Poetry Slam in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Call for Submissions: EarLit Shorts audio short fiction anthologies

Rattling Books is seeking previously unpublished short fiction for EarLit Shorts, a series of audio anthologies. Stories will be available on-line, singly or collectively, as digital downloads. Anthologies may also be published in MP3 CD format.

EarLit Shorts was launched in the fall of 2008 with works by Jessica Grant, Steven Heighton, Joel Thomas Hynes, Kathleen Winter, Russell Wangersky and others.

To be eligible, submissions must

· be previously unpublished between the covers of a book (i.e. stories which have appeared in periodicals are eligible);

· be between 500 and 8,000 words in length.

There are two ways to submit:

Send previously unpublished stories and covering letter to Rattling Books, General Delivery, Tors Cove, NL, Canada A0A 4A0.

Send your story or stories and covering letter to

Entries must be postmarked on or before March 30, 2009.

Submissions will not be returned.

Stories included in the EarLit Shorts series are subject to a royalty based publishing contract.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Last Rights by Prudence Grieve, narrated by Jane Dingle now available as a Short Fiction Single digital download

New Short Fiction Single available
from the EarLit Shorts Collection

Last Rights

Prudence Grieve

narrated by Jane Dingle

iPod friendly mp3 digital download from Rattling Books

CanLit to listen to for only $1.95