carte blanche would like to congratulate Gwen Benaway for having her nonfiction piece “Pussy” selected by juror Hanif Abdurraqib to appear in the 2019 Best of the Net Anthology!
In November of 2019 I spoke to Nyla Matuk about colonialism, activism, and resistance poetry for the Fall issue of the Montreal Review of Books. Matuk’s book, Resisting Canada, was just about to come out from Véhicule Press, and I for one was excited to see such a revolutionary book in the Canadian literary milieu.
The book is beautiful and searing, an anthology of voices championing defiance against a settler state that silences and abuses its population while simultaneously praising itself for its image as a progressive and liberal melting pot.
There is never a bad time to honestly discuss Canada’s oppressive tactics and colonialist heritage. But right now, as the federal and provincial governments, RCMP, and Coastal GasLink/Transcanada flagrantly violate Wet’suwet’en, Canadian law, and international law, it feels particularly relevant. To quote Erica Violet Lee, the land defense currently being carried out is “an enactment of Indigenous law and an affirmation of Indigenous life.” As we witness Canada’s assault on Indigenous rights, we must take action.
Currently, carte blanche is seeking an enthusiastic member to join the Montreal-based editorial team:
Publicist — the publicist would be in charge of social media and promotion of magazine issues, blog posts, events, and more. Demonstrated strategies for Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook promotion required. The successful candidate will also support the Managing Editor with communication, and the organization and building of each of the annual three issues of carte blanche. Knowledge of WordPress, elementary coding, Photoshop, and Submittable is essential.
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a writer in possession of a good idea, must be in want of a grant. Last year I was on a Canada Council granting jury, and it not only enlightened me as to how the whole process works, it also renewed my faith in the Canada Council in general, and in the granting process in particular.
Over the years some of my writer friends had gotten the distinct impression that the Canada Council was this edifice of insiders. Those who got grants kept getting them, and those on the juries awarded grants to their writer friends. And this bitter conviction stopped many of them from applying. “I’m not going to win anyway, so why try?” It doesn’t help that by default, a writer’s life is an incessant litany of rejection.
But after having been on the jury, I’m now convinced we all should apply annually.
Photography Editor – the editor works both independently and in collaboration with the editorial team to help steer the magazine forward. The successful candidate would lead the photography section of carte blanche for three issues per year (winter, spring/summer and fall). Their responsibilities would include evaluating all photography submissions received, organize submissions, and respond to photographers through Submittable. The candidate should have at least basic image editing skills, be familiar with contemporary fine art and photography, and have a good eye for narrative imagery. Read more →
carte blanche is pleased to announce Carolin Huang has been named guest poetry editor for the winter 2020 issue of the magazine!
Carolin Huang is a writer, archivist, and academic living in Montreal. In 2019, she participated in the Banff Centre Emerging Writers Intensive and the Jack Kerouac Summer Writing Program.
Someone with two decades of experience getting critiques of their writing shouldn’t curl into a ball after an editor’s comments, right?
Then why, after receiving a developmental edit on my first attempt at a novel, did I find myself in such a pit of despair? (Yes, that pit, that ball; I was every cliché imaginable.)
“I’m writing a novel in English that’s inspired by wǔxiá fiction.”
As I finished speaking in Mandarin, forty middle school students stared back at me with stunned eyes. It was as if I had suddenly transformed into a xiákè, a wandering warrior, who had stepped out of the pages of a wǔxiá novel and into their classroom in Chóngqìng, China. In reality, I was only a visiting writer and translator, with no martial arts skills or supernatural powers, recently returned to visit the land of my birth.
Gasps and questions continued, becoming louder and louder.
Mrs. Hé shushed her students and turned to me with awe. “Wǔxiá fiction is so rooted in traditional Chinese literature and culture. How can you write wǔxiá in English?”