Following on from the success of their September showcase, the editors at In/Words Magazine and Press are kicking of the new year with their Shivers Showcase. Hosted at Café Pressed on Gladstone, this Friday, January 10th, the showcase features new and established artists on the Canadian literary scene.
With everything from indie-folk jams, memoir and poetry reading, the showcase is a multi-talented event that has grown out of the monthly In/Words reading series. “We received enormously positive feedback after our first showcase,” editor Maria Demare tells me, “and we thought it would be wonderful to have another to start of the new year.”
Along with Chris Johnson and Matt Jones, Demare is part of the current rotation of editors at In/Words, a student run literary journal founded by Professor Collett Tracy in 2001. Though based at Carleton University, In/Words has a decidedly outward focus, holding its weekly writer’s circle and monthly reading series off campus.
Of the monthly reading series, which features a guest reader and an open-mic, Johnson says, “I am a die-hard advocate of the potential that the open-mic event holds.” He adds that it helps those new to reading by creating a positive space, “because putting your work out there is always going to be challenging.”
Jones, meanwhile, tells me that he, “started to integrate with the In/Words community by attending the writer’s circle and showing up to a reading or two.” He was then asked by former In/Words editor Dave Currie (co-host of CKCU’s Literary Landscape) to read at last year’s VerseFest. Throughout this he met with Tracy, who, as a professor at Carleton provides the needed continuity that otherwise might see a literary endeavor such as this wind itself up when editors graduate.
“If you’re an active member of the poetic community,” Jones continues, “and a student of Carleton University you’re likely to catch the eye of Collett, who still has final say on who serves in an editorial capacity. So far the editors have a few people in mind who we’ve been actively cultivating as our replacement, though we’re always open to new talent.”
That, though, is the future, and speaking of this Friday’s showcase Demare says, “Community is an imperative part of any magazine and small press, and In/Words has been fortunate to have a wonderful, dedicated and supportive community. It is incredibly important to work towards greater exposure, and to make sure that the doors are open, so the showcase format is very appealing because it opens itself to all different kinds of people and art.”
In/Words Magazine Shivers: A Showcase
Friday, January 10th, 19:00 (Doors)
$10 (at the door), $7 (students with valid student ID)
Ali Alikhani, Kaleb Hikele, Marilyn Irwin, Jane Silcott , Kaleigh Watts & Gary Franks
Café Pressed, 750 Gladstone Avenue, Ottawa
From their Facebook page: “Tickets can be purchased at the door for $10. Students with a valid student ID card can get discounted entry for $7. No one will be turned away at the door. This will be a beautiful show. Proceeds will benefit the artists performing. Our focus is to have fun and celebrate community and art together in a variety of mediums. So come out, bring friends, buy a pint or a delicious sandwich, and prepare for a night of poetry and music. We look forward to seeing you all there.”