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à la carte blog

Domenica Martinello Wins the 2017 3Macs carte blanche Prize


Last night at the QWF Gala and Award Ceremony, Domenica Martinello was announced as the winner of this year’s 3Macs carte blanche Prize for her essay “Ferrante In the Cellar: A Vulgar Appreciation.” Congratulations!

3Macs carte blanche Prize Finalists! Kasia Juno, Domenica Martinello, Lauren Turner

Clockwise from the top: Liz Howard, Domenica Martinello, Lauren Turner, Kasia Juno

An exciting announcement for a crisp, fall morning: the finalists for the 2017 3Macs carte blanche Prize, as selected by juror and Griffin Poetry Prize-winning Liz Howard, are Kasia Juno (fiction), Domenica Martinello (creative non-fiction), and Lauren Turner (poetry)!

Announcing the CNFC/carte blanche Creative Nonfiction Competition


We’re doing it again! carte blanche and the Creative Nonfiction Collective Society (CNFC) have teamed up to bring you a Canada-wide creative nonfiction contest.

The winner will receive $750 and have their text published in carte blanche. The winner will be announced in May 2018 at the CNFC 14th Annual Conference in Toronto, Ontario. .

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CanLit for Cynics: Revolutions by Alex Good and Searching for Petronius Totem by Peter Unwin


THIS YEAR SHOULD HAVE been an auspicious one for CanLit. As Canada celebrates the sesquicentennial, it seems every newspaper, blog, and bookshop has a “top 150 Canadian books” list to push. Canada’s 150th also evokes fond memories of the 1967 centennial, when CanLit was just coming into its own. But for many, those 150 lists, chock full of CanLit luminaries like Michael Ondaatje and Margaret Atwood, are hard to stomach right now.

Ritual Nostalgia: Revising the MFA Stasis


I DON’T REMEMBER WHEN I first heard of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, though I do remember the first time I lied to seem more impressive. I was six-years-old at the Jewish Public Library in Montréal, as was my childhood ritual. The library was a short walk away from the duplex I lived in facing a park. My older cousin was there—he was, very impressively, seven years old and a boy.

Announcing Liz Howard as the Judge of the 2017 3Macs carte blanche Prize


We’re delighted to announce that the finalists of this year’s 3Macs will be selected by poet Liz Howard. The winner will be announced at the Quebec Writers’ Federation Gala in Fall 2017.

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QWF Writes: Interview with Robert Edison Sandiford

EVERY COUPLE OF WEEKS, Robert Edison Sandiford calls me from Barbados. Robert is one of this year’s Quebec Writers’ Federation mentors and I am his protégé. We’ve made arrangements to speak at 5 pm via Skype so this interview would feel more face-to-face. At 5:10, we still have no audio so he switches from his laptop to his desktop. At 5:25 the recording app on my phone stops working. At 5:37 we decide we’ll have to hobble back and forth between the computers, a phone, and another phone app to make it work. Afterwards, when it’s all sorted, he say: “Well, there’s a lesson about tenacity.”

Shaping a New Voice — Or, How the Spectre of Censorship Still Haunts Me


I WAS IN MY mid-to-late twenties when I decided to write in English. A few obvious obstacles stood out: I wasn’t a native speaker and I was working in a totally unrelated field: software engineering. However, I was an immigrant in Canada, and had been lectured more than once on how people in Canada could pursue what their heart desired (a female friend with a knack in operatic singing, unable to officially practice it in Iran, found her voice here in Canada; others in engineering backgrounds formed bands; etc.). The optimism of my age made me venture into uncharted territory. However, there was another less obvious challenge ahead of me: what to write about?

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An introductory note from carte blanche’s new editor!

Klara colour b_w

As a rule when writing, I avoid the obvious in the first line, but today the excitement is impatient and uncontainable: I am so very pleased and honoured to accept the editorship of carte blanche, to work with the fantastic current masthead, to sustain and refine an established journal that publishes pivotal contemporary voices—George Elliott Clarke, Madeleine Thien, Heather O’Neill, Gwen Benaway, Kayla Czaga, Domenica Martinello, Meags Fitzgerald, among many others—and to engage as a community of writers and artists centered in Montreal and spiraling out throughout Quebec, Canada, and North America.

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“It will be interesting to see what happens if enough of the current general feeling of disgust turns to anger” — an interview with Alex Good

Canadian Novel.indd

“The problem is that we’re living in a moment of cultural contraction and I don’t think there’s much we can do about that. That might seem like a strange thing to say given the billions of words and images published on the Internet every day, but my sense is that the Internet isn’t helping but is actually making things worse.”

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