A Foray In the World of Canadian Literature

I know that this isn’t the type of posting I traditionally make but seeing as my absenteeism seems to have struck a question with my followers, I wanted to share a bit of insight on my goings-on over the last year and a bit, so here goes…

Since July 2014, I have had the pleasure of working on a special program at work. For those of you who are unawares, I worked for the Canada Council for the Arts in their Writing and Publishing section as a program assistant with various grant and award programs. And before you ask, no, I don’t make the decisions on who gets funding and who doesn’t nor will your affiliation with me be of any help. Can you say conflict of interest!

Some of you might already be familiar with the Scotiabank Giller Prize. Others of you may have heard of the Governor General’s Literary Awards (GGLA’s) but I suspect in not as much detail. The GGLA’s have been in existence since 1936 (historical list of winners) and it’s been my baby since July and stands – in most Canadian literary circles – as one of the most prestigious Canadian literary awards.

To say that I’ve been subjected to many works would be an understatement. Over 1,600 Canadian works have been submitted in 2014! Make that over 1,500 for 2015! Each book have been diligently evaluated by officers to meet the GGLA eligibility criteria prior to being put forth to a cast of three peer assessors who have been tasked with the decision on who will make the shortlist and which author/illustrator/translator would come up on top as their respective category’s winner.

Over these cycles, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting each winner in both French and English categories ranging from Children’s Literature-Text, Children’s Literature-Illustrated Books, Drama, Poetry, Translation, Non-fiction and Fiction. For one week, it was one of celebration – a week to discover new genres, new reads, new talent – for those of the general public it was a week that led to the discovery of an array of works that would broaden their literary horizons as a reader. For me, it was all of the above and MORE!

I’m not one to go out of my way to get to a book-signing event, nor have I ever been to a public reading but this is a little aperçu of what my first public reading/signing event was like…

First, as a program assistant, I was not only a spectator but I also oversaw a lot of the planning and logistical work with regards to each event that took place.

The winners first arrived on Monday and had an assortment of obligations whether it be with media for interviews, public events, a visit to Parliament Hill which included their very impressive and historic library, not to mention an evening at Rideau Hall – the Governor General’s residence – where they were celebrated for their winning works.

You want to figure out how to discover new genres and disciplines to read? Don’t go to your local bookstore and peruse the shelves. Nope! Go to a public reading! Trust me when I say that if you think you’re not one for a particular literary discipline, you might discover that you’re sadly mistaken. A public event such as a reading is not only a way to network with authors, but a phenomenal way to discover something new that you might have otherwise overlooked.

This is exactly what happened to me and boy do I feel foolish!

Not only did I purchase books that I had an interest in, but I also found a collection in my hands, myself lined up for the the register, purchasing genres and disciplines I would have never otherwise walked out with at a Chapters, Coles, Barnes & Nobles, whatever other XYZ-named store before. This is because those readings–the way the author spoke of their work, the excerpts they chose, the characters’ voices that were brought to life–the entirety was so captivating that their five minutes in front of the crowd simply just wasn’t enough! Heck, I have read one of the winning books already and I wound up with the urge to go back and read it again, feeling as if I would better connect with its characters if I did!

So with that said, hopefully I’ve given you the urge to go out and discover something new, to try a new route in discovering your next read, to open yourself to the various cultures in literature and experiences within it.

In the meantime, I’m just going to curl up on the couch, my cup of coffee in hand and dive in to some of my GGLA winning books I have yet to tackle!

Happy reading!

 

Sore Indulgences – #MySexySaturday #Saturday7 #MSSAuthors

You’ve got to love the beginning of a new day! Well, this week’s theme for My Sexy Saturday just so happens to be A Sexy Morning.

With no further ado, here’s a small excerpt from Book 1 of The Broken Men Chronicles series entitled Once Written, Twice Shy.

Once Written Twice Shy

A strand of her blonde hair fell in her face and I brushed it off to the side, tucking it behind her ear.  My eyes never left hers.

“Good morning,” she said.  She blushed and buried her head into the pillow with a groan.

“What’s that for?”

“I was thinking about what we did last night,” she said into the pillow.

I laughed.  “I take it that you enjoyed it?”

She lifted her head.  The twinkle in her eyes had returned.  “Enjoyed, you could say that, more like over-indulged.  I’m a little sore because someone used me well last night.”

“I think I can finagle a cure that might help with that,” I said, “for later.”

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About Once Written, Twice Shy

After a bitter marriage, Paxton seeks respite from his loss.  Rediscovering his writing, he never expected creating a piece worthy of reading nor for two unsuspecting paths to cross in the most unconventional of ways.

Thousands of miles separated them, yet he’d never felt closer to anyone.  Finding out that happiness and love was attainable again, was one thing.  Having Alissa, was another.

When the two meet, sparks fly, chemistry is beyond explosive, and emotions reach a boiling point.  Their brief love affair ignited the fuse but what Paxton neglected to anticipate was that his son would fall for the sweet, meek demurred woman in Alissa or the fact the woman would be their salvation…in more ways than one.

Don’t go just yet! Check out what other authors have out there, or better yet, submit your favorite snippet yourself! 7 words, 7 sentences, 7 paragraphs… choose your pleasure and submit by clicking CLICK HERE!

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Frisky Allie – #SexySnippets

At a celebratory dinner with Paxton, Alissa decides to show us more of her frisky side in this week’s Sexy Snippets for The Nuthouse Scribblers. You’ve got to love a woman who knows what she wants and Alissa sure proves that in Once Written, Twice Shy.

Once Written Twice Shy

“I’ll tell you what I crave, Paxton,” she said, nipping my jaw and pulled away enough to look me in the eyes.  “I want your lips all over me.  I want to feel your hands caress my skin.  I need your hard throbbing dick inside my wet pussy.”  She smirked when my fork fell out of my hand and I was forced to clamp my dropped jaw shut to swallow the sudden abundance of saliva that had materialized.  “Baby, I want you so deep inside of me that when we fall apart, I want to do it again, and again, and-”

I grabbed the back of her neck with one hand and crushed my lips to hers. 

#MySexySaturday

Welcome to another installment of My Sexy Saturday!  We’re back with The Broken Men Chronicles series where our guy  Paxton sure seems to know how to get a girl to give him what he wants.  Check out his methods of persuasion in Once Written, Twice Shy!

Once Written Twice Shy
I kissed down to one of her breasts and took a nipple into my mouth.  I made her gasp as my tongue twirled around her erect peak, giving it enough attention before I switched to the other.  Her breathing picked up.

“You,” I said between kisses, as I headed south, “can have this,” I paused, wrapping my fingers around the waistband of her undies and pulled them down, “every night.”  I hovered above her core and blew hot air before giving her a quick flick of my tongue, causing her hips to arch up in want and a whimper to escape her parted lips.

“Oh…” she said, her face flushed from her arousal, its scent permeating the valley of her legs.

“Say you’ll stay with me, Alissa,” I said before sucking on her clit.

“Oh, my God!  I-I…”  I nipped at the pearl and she jumped.  “Ah!  Pax, what’s gotten into you?”

“Say it,” I growled as I slid two fingers into her heated core and felt her clamp down on them.  “Say it Allie.  I love you, let’s be together.”  I could tell that she was overwhelmed by the sensations I was inflicting on her; maybe too much so for her to answer.  I stopped the thrusting of my fingers.  She whimpered at the loss of movement.

“I-I’ll stay with you,” she said as I followed through and sent her over the edge.

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About Once Written, Twice Shy

After a bitter marriage, Paxton seeks respite from his loss.  Rediscovering his writing, he never expected creating a piece worthy of reading nor for two unsuspecting paths to cross in the most unconventional of ways.

Thousands of miles separated them, yet he’d never felt closer to anyone.  Finding out that happiness and love was attainable again, was one thing.  Having Alissa, was another.

When the two meet, sparks fly, chemistry is beyond explosive, and emotions reach a boiling point.  Their brief love affair ignited the fuse but what Paxton neglected to anticipate was that his son would fall for the sweet, meek demurred woman in Alissa or the fact the woman would be their salvation…in more ways than one.

But don’t go just yet! Check out what other authors have out there, or better yet, submit your favorite snippet yourself! 7 words, 7 sentences, 7 paragraphs… choose your pleasure and submit by clicking HERE!

#MySexySaturday

Since this is my first blog hop with My Sexy Saturday, it’s only fair to start off with sharing some from the first book of my latest series.  Here’s a snippet from Once Written, Twice Shy!
With Paxton and Alissa having overcome their first misunderstanding, it’s no surprise that partial nudity and a little taunting is bound to heat things up!

Once Written Twice Shy
Her mouth collided with mine and my hands fell to release the catch on her bra.  The feel of her bare ample chest against mine made my shaft pulse with more need than earlier.  She jumped up and wrapped her legs around my waist and I turned us toward the bed.  I tried to be gentle as I laid her down beneath me but having a woman hang on to you like a spider monkey can cause a shift in a guy’s balance.  To continue in the day’s awkward fashion, we tumbled and I landed over her with a grunt as our sexes crushed together over our underwear while Alissa giggled at the turn of events.

I snapped the elastic to her underwear and her laughter ceased.  “These have got to come off,” I said.  My fingers slid to the sides of her hips and began tugging at the undergarment.

I kissed downward, vowing that I’d return to her breasts after paying my respects to the rest of that beautiful body of hers.  The closer I got to her core, the more I smelled her arousal.  It made me want to hurry things along.

When my boxer briefs were off, I towered over her on my knees taking in the sights.  Her hips were wide, waist narrow.  Built like the finest sports car—those curves of hers could make any grown man obsessive about running their hands all over them.  Her womanhood, well, let’s just say that I could see myself spending all night in that haven.  Shaved, smooth as a baby’s bottom and its juices were begging me to take her in my mouth and ravage her until she screamed out my name—repeatedly!

Our eyes met when I brought my face to hers.  “You’re beautiful.”  I smiled at her blush, kissed her nose and went to work.

From her lips, I trailed kisses, licks and bites along with letting my hands and fingers do some of the talking down her torso.  Her breathing picked up, her body wriggled as she attempted to bury her butt into the mattress.

She was at my mercy.

But don’t go just yet! Check out what other authors have out there, or better yet, submit your favorite snippet yourself! 7 words, 7 sentences, 7 paragraphs… choose your pleasure and submit by clicking HERE!

 

Sampling the Heat: Part I

I thought it fun to give you lovely readers, a subtle taste of the first book in The Broken Men Chronicles series. Let me give you a little insight–beyond the book’s jacket–on Paxton in Once Written, Twice Shy.
Once Written Twice Shy Full

Prologue

I stared at the overly large bags that lay by the front entrance with what must have been the world’s largest what the fuck look on my face.

“I can’t do this anymore,” she said.  Her words tore me to shreds.

“What do you mean you can’t do this anymore?  Julie, you haven’t been doing anything to fix this.”

“I’m done, Paxton.”

I ran my hands through my hair, pulling at the handful of tresses gripped between my rigid fingers.  The prickle in my scalp did enough to keep my temper in check and diffuse some of my anger.  “You’ve got to be kidding me.”

I couldn’t believe it but then again, I could.  She was giving up on everything.  My love, our life, our family; it had all disappeared in the blink of an eye.

I still loved her but in all honesty, I can also state that I haven’t been in love with her for quite some time.

We’ve been together for nearly five years.  In that time, we had built a home; one that was graced with our beautiful three-year-old son, Jasper.  My hand ran down my face.  Christ, how am I going to explain this to Jasper?

I was willing to try and work things out.  Hell, I’d even mentioned marriage counseling on multiple occasions but like everything else, work came first and the sessions had never materialized.

I looked up at the woman who stood in the entrance to what I had considered our home, frustration, anger, bitterness and that subtle feeling of failure were all too overwhelming.  “Fine,” I said, “but what about Jasper?”

“Can you keep him for this week?  It’s just until I get situated.  We can discuss custody later.”

“Where are you going?”

“Todd’s asked me to move in with him,” she said as if I had been in the know about her infidelity the entire time—no, not until a couple of months ago.

I huffed.  “So he’s still in the picture.”  I hadn’t asked as so much as accused her.  She nodded.  “How long have you two been…” I couldn’t finish the sentence.  Bile rose from my stomach.

“Does it matter?”

“Never mind,” I said in a defeated tone and looked down at my feet when all I wanted to do is ask her what happened to can we try and work things out?  I groaned at the memory and shook it out of my head in dismay.  “Get out.”

“Pax,” she said and made to step toward me with an outstretched hand.  I wasn’t about to seek comfort from the one who’d wounded me.

My blood pressure rose.  “I said get out!” I pointed toward the door, my stomach contents churning further.

The woman took off like a bat out of hell.

I was tired of having a one-sided relationship and thus relieved at the woman’s departure.  The news of her continued adultery had shocked me, especially when she had sworn to make an effort to sort things out between us.  It explained why we had remained in our separate rooms all of this time, living our lives separately as though we were roommates.  It more than proved that we were better off apart.  This was really the end of my marriage.

When I married, I had intended it to be for life.  Well, I guess life had a plan of its own, huh?

With each passing day, I picked up the broken pieces of me.  I hadn’t realized that I had stifled so much of myself over the years to try and please a woman that seemed to never be sated with anything I said or did.

Fueled by my feelings of loss and neglect, I made a decision which led me to rediscover an old love.  The proverbial flame was rekindled and I began to write again.

For what felt like an eternity, I wrote.  When I was done, I read my piece over so many times that my words no longer made sense, forcing me to put it down and go back to it later.

I stared at my finished manuscript displayed on my screen.  What am I going to do with this?

I had discovered a site, a few months before I found out about Julie’s adulterous tendencies.  It had been recommended by a colleague.  The venue allowed people from around the world to peruse and read various works written by amateurs.  Some of the work on there I found horrid while others, despite their various grammatical and punctual flaws, you wished you could set your hands on an edited and printed copy, they were so great.

What the hell.  I decided to chance it.  With a bit of copy and paste, a little restructuring, I hit the publish button and there it was.  My first written piece was out for the world to see.

It wasn’t until a few months after I had posted my work that I stumbled upon a comment that I couldn’t dismiss.  I ached for constructive feedback but the lack of it was getting to me due to the site being overrun by teenagers.  I debated getting rid of my profile altogether up until that fateful day.

That short message was where things began to change for me.  With simple words of appreciation, intellectual and heartfelt thoughts, followed by a click of her mouse, she had made me smile.

I sought her profile out and found that she was a fellow amateur writer just like me.

She’s gorgeous, had been my first impression.  Despite her evident beauty, something else could be seen in her profile photo; something that beckoned me further, begged my curiosity to look beyond the surface somehow.  It was in her eyes—loneliness.  Or was I reading into things too much since I was such a novice at these social media-like sites?

For a few weeks, I sat on her words alone as I read through some of her work.  She was good, better than good.

I thought that I’d end up with one of those written numbers that didn’t make much sense or that glittered in the night featuring vampires and werewolves.  Boy was I wrong!

The woman sure knew how to paint a vivid picture.  She pulled off the hot and sexy but kept it real all at once by adding emotion, drama, even a bit of action and suspense to her mix.  Her work was altogether something reminiscent of everyday life—the good, the bad, the ugly, the…well, you get the picture.

A few days after reading her last novel, a dream influenced by her work prompted me to finally write out an acknowledgment to her comment.  From there, we began to chat through private messages on a near daily basis.  We never stopped…

Wondering what this whole Part I thing is up in the title? Stay tuned…