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News for November

I’m of two minds when it comes to this Daylight Savings Time business. Every spring, when we lose an hour, I express my unbridled hatred for this seemingly outmoded tradition with a fiery passion that consumes my (rather crotchety) soul. But then, every autumn, when we “fall back” and gain an hour, my intractability seemingly evaporates and I suddenly become a bit more amenable to the whole affair.

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Daylight Savings Time: the most confusing time of the year for drunk people. And possibly insomniacs.

Call me capricious if you want to, but it’s not like I’m necessarily bigoted against certain months of the year (a monthist? a misomensist?). It is, dare I say, perfectly natural to look forward to an extra hour. An enterprising book lover might amuse him or herself in any number of delightful activities, including but not limited to:

  • reading a book;
  • shopping for books;
  • buying a book;
  • sleeping in (and dreaming about books);
  • talking about books;
  • writing a book; and
  • other non-book-related activities, I suppose.

And in which of these did this porcupette decide to partake? I’ll give you a hint: it had to do with books.

What’s happening this month?

At PQL.

Printing continues this month as the holidays rapidly approach. Jon Evans’s No Fixed Address is next up, and Jim Westergard’s Oddballs, not to mention a new, highly anticipated issue of the Devil’s Artisan, are on deck before the end of the year.

In Toronto.

The one and only Alec Dempster will be launching his new book Lotería Huasteca at the Gladstone hotel on November 2. It will feature a not-to-be-missed performance by the Mexican son huasteco trio Tlacuatzin. The event is held in collaboration with Pages UnBound and promises to be a wonderful evening. Be sure to check it out. (Tickets are $10 or free with the purchase of the book!)

And following that event, we have another wonderful launch scheduled for Thursday, November 5. Iconic Canadian painter Christopher Pratt will be on hand at the Mira Godard Gallery in Yorkville to launch his book, Thoughts on Driving to Venus. There will be a book signing, reading and Q&A, so we hope to see you there.

In Ottawa.

If you’re a fan of small presses, be sure to stop by the Jack Purcell Community Centre for the Ottawa Small Press Fair. Sounds like just my kind of event—if you’re from around the area, be sure to pick up some treasures!

In the world.

November 5 is Guy Fawkes Day. Question: is this a celebration of Guy Fawkes’s opposition to religious persecution, or of the government’s discovery of the plot to blow up the houses of Parliament? Never been clear on that.

November 11 is Remembrance Day. Be sure to pick up a poppy and take a moment to honour the armed forces.

And finally, November 20 is Absurdity Day. How preposterous … and yet delightful.

From the porcupette’s corner.

The end of October held two of my particular pleasures—the first being the slight crispness in the air, and the second being the LPG Pre-Sales Conference, in which I get to blather on about all of the great new books I’m excited about to the lovely members of the Literary Press Group. They in turn pass my ramblings on to the sales reps at Canadian Manda, who subsequently share the enthusiasm with booksellers who, you guessed it, pass all of that information on to you, the reader.

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I am also somewhat smug with this week’s website improvement project. I’ve been pulling my hair out over the website’s search function and attendant databases for months now, and I finally had some time to sit down, learn about how it worked and get my virtual hands dirty. I researched a bit about databases and search queries and other esoteric details that I won’t bore you with, then (very carefully!) started tinkering. Suffice it to say, the search function is now running smoothly. Go ahead and take it for a spin!

And finally, you might have noticed something else creeping onto the radar this week. That’s right—now that the cat is out of the bag on the sales conference front, we’ve announced our Spring 2016 list on the homepage! You’ll find five brand spanking new titles including two books of poetry [1] [2], a graphic novel, a book of literary criticism and … well, a book that is unlike anything you’ve ever seen before.

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Happy exploring!

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The Porcupine's Quill would like to acknowledge the support of the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts for our publishing program. The financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund (CBF) is also gratefully acknowledged.