Crabapple Mews Collective is an author collective made up of volunteer writers and editors. We draw on our backgrounds as writers, teachers, editors, booksellers, designers, academics, publishers and producers of kick-ass literary events to help bring new stories to readers.
Our story starts here.


A great start to our book tour

Jane, myself, and our amazing author-contributors are grateful to all who helped fill Calgary’s Shelf Life Books last night and usher in the Writing Menopause anthology. We celebrated, we shared stories, we toasted the launch of this revolutionary collaboration, and we sold 40 books. An electric start to our book tour! Still to come: reading events in Edmonton (June 9), Toronto (June 14) and Kingston (June 15).  

We hope you can join us; we still have a few bottles of leftover wine.

Calgary launch WM 6

Readers – from left to right: Steve Passey, Lori D. Roadhouse, Rea Tarvydas, Shaun Hunter, JoAnn McCaig, Roberta Rees, Jane Cawthorne and Elaine Morin.

Calgary launch WM 5

JoAnn McCaig, contributor and owner of Shelf Life Books, showing an image of a Dabstract painting that she references in her piece “Last Blood”.

Two spring books for the orchard

Writing Menopause
This Thursday, May 25, Jane Cawthorne and E.D. Morin kick off their book tour for Writing Menopause: An Anthology of Fiction, Poetry and Creative Non-fiction, at Shelf Life Books. Please join the editors to celebrate the launch with seven other contributors to this vital anthology. See other tour dates.

Winging It
As if that’s not enough excitement for the Crabapples, on Tuesday May 30, Inge Bremer-Trueman unveils her third novel Winging It at Owl’s Nest Books. Plus, it’s IPPY night. While we sip wine and hear more about Sonja’s latest man and mechanical passions (and enjoy whatever unpredictable spring weather Calgary throws at us), When the Wheels Fall Off, Inge’s second book, will be receiving honours and accolades in New York City at the 2017 IPPY Award ceremonies.

Writing Menopause – book tour

After a three-year gestation period, editors Jane Cawthorne and E.D. Morin are pleased to release Writing Menopause: An Anthology of Fiction, Poetry and Creative Non-fiction, published by Inanna Publications. We would be pleased if you could join us to celebrate this literary labour of love and meet the authors. For more information, follow Writing Menopause on Facebook.

CALGARY KICK-OFF PARTY: May 25, 7 pm
Shelf Life Books, 1302 – 4 Street St
Featuring: Rona Altrows, Jane Cawthorne, Shaun Hunter, JoAnn McCaig, E.D. Morin, Steve Passey, Roberta Rees, Lori D. Roadhouse and Rea Tarvydas.

EDMONTON: June 9, 7 pm
Audreys Books, 10702 Jasper Avenue
Featuring: Margaret Macpherson, Lou Morin, Shirley Serviss, Rea Tarvydas, Jane Cawthorne and E.D. Morin.

TORONTO: June 14, 6 pm
Inanna Publications’ spring launch at The Supermarket
Kensington Market, 268 Augusta Avenue
Featuring: Jane Cawthorne, Merle Amodeo, B.A. Markus, Leanna McLennan, Gemma Meharchand and E.D. Morin. With three other Inanna new releases!

KINGSTON: June 15, 7 pm
A Novel Idea Bookstore, 156 Princess Street
Featuring: Merle Amodeo, Louise Carson, Colette Maitland, B.A. Markus, E.D. Morin and Jane Cawthorne.

With gratitude for the tour support
This book tour is made possible with support from Inanna Publications, the Canada Council, the Quebec Writers’ Federation, Shelf Life Books, Audreys Books, The Supermarket and A Novel Idea.

Another win for Crabapple Mews Collective

IPPY Awards

Exciting news! Inge Bremer-Trueman has won a 2017 Independent Publishers Book Award for When the Wheels Fall Off. The award is a bronze medal in the category Canada West Fiction. See the full list of winners.

As luck would have it the award ceremony is being held May 30 in New York, the same night as Inge’s Calgary launch of Winging It. It makes us wonder what would Sonja Pfeiffer do? And more importantly, what shoes to wear?

A huge congratulations to Inge for her win. How’s that for them apples?

Hot off the presses

Winging_It

How does it feel to hold your third novel in your hands? Inge Bremen-Trueman is feeling pretty swell. As usual, Natalie Olsen (Kisscut Design) has done a bang-up job of the design. And now that the books are in Inge’s hot little hands, the next big milestone is to celebrate Winging It with a launch. That happens May 30 at 7 pm, at Owl’s Nest Books in Calgary. Come join in the fun and catch up on lead character Sonja Pfeiffer’s exploits.

For a sneak preview, Inge will also be reading at this year’s Writing in the Works evening being held at Owl’s Nest, on April 27 at 7 pm. A quick shout-out to our favourite bookstore. We are so grateful for the support they give to our local literary scene. Remember to stop by and show your love back and buy some books.

Finally, we urge you to read Jane Cawthorne’s blog post about her and E. D.’s forthcoming anthology Writing Menopause, a collection that includes writing by fellow collective member Lou Morin. The book’s first review – published online in THIS Magazine – included the stellar descriptor “revolutionary.” Read it here: Anthology explores the underreported topic of menopause.

Winging It ready to take off

Winging It_Inge Trueman

Winging It is prepared for take off. Within two days of Natalie sending the manuscript and cover documents to Friesens, the proofs were in my hands. Talk about fast service! The books should be arriving on my doorstep before the end of February. In the meanwhile, arrangements have been made with Sarah to hold the launch at Owl’s Nest Bookstore on Tuesday, May 30. 

It’s going to be a blast and guaranteed not to snow.

Listen Up Friends, We Have a Voice

by E. D. Morin

Yesterday, I lay in bed for much of the day with a frozen neck and shoulders. It was as if my body knew what was about to happen down south, what had in essence already happened. As if something had its hands on me and was clamping down hard, immobilizing me. Trumpland.

Is it any wonder that on this day I was also handed my voice?

In a small room in the basement of the Memorial Park Library, David Irvine launched his new book Caring is Everything. David spoke about the need for a true dialogue and about the power of caring. He was charged up with a desire to do something to counter all the anger and greed and inattention in the world, this blatant inattention to what is happening in front of our eyes. Climate change. Inequality. Violence. It was no accident that David’s book launch fell on the same evening that American election results were rolling out. He brought a bright ray of hope to the day’s circus show.

I’m generally not one for being in the spotlight, but last night both David and his publisher Ashis Gupta of Bayeux Arts spoke highly of the work I did editing this new book. I was a bit embarrassed by this. But as I tossed and turned all last night, as so many people must have, it came to me that I have a voice.

So today, weirdly, I feel hopeful. Paradoxically, this American election win has unleashed a sense of urgency in me, an incredible impulse to speak out now. Rome is burning. The window to change our footprint, to reduce carbon emissions, to save our species is closing. It doesn’t take a scientist to see that we are coming to the end of our planet’s capacity to give what we take from it. The ice caps are melting at a shocking rate, bringing devastating storms and rising sea levels. Our indigenous peoples in Canada have been telling us this for so long. We haven’t been listening. Instead, we’ve been poisoning their water. We’ve been taking away their livelihoods.

Start by watching Before the Flood. Read David’s new book. Read Wenjack by Joseph Boyden, and while you’re at it watch Gord Downie and Jeff Lemire’s The Secret Path. Then go to the Leap Manifesto and sign on.

I have a voice. You have a voice.

Speak up.

 

Alberta Book Publishing Awards 2016

Crabapple collective members Elaine Morin and Lou Morin attended Alberta’s annual book publishing awards event, held this year in Calgary on September 16. We ate, drank and breathed book talk, and were reminded of the communal labour of love that’s involved in publishing.

We were thrilled to see CMC book designer Natalie Olsen sweep the Book Design award category. With three nominations, she took away the award for A Revision of Forward.

Keynote speaker Will Ferguson spun tall tales and described his path to getting published for the first time, divulging tips that tended to the unorthodox but were nonetheless effective. See where it got him.

The evening culminated with the announcement of the winning Alberta Reader’s Choice award title. In a David & Goliath move, self-published indie author Laurel Deedrick-Mayne accepted a giant-sized $10,000 cheque for A Wake for the Dreamland. She spoke to the importance of hybrid publishing channels in today’s book world, and brought home to us as Crabapple members what’s possible on this publishing path.

Calgary’s sparkling Freehand Press won the Publisher of the Year for among other things its commitment to producing high-caliber, ‘quirky’ literature.

All of this reinforces the great work being done by Alberta’s book publishing community. Read Alberta Books!

Winging it is done!

Winging It is done!

Well, sorta…..

Writers, the world over, know that a book isn’t really done until the editor says it’s done. Typing ‘The End’, onto the last page of the manuscript is, in many ways, just the beginning

So, on to step 2: Hand it over to editor extraordinaire, Elaine Morin, who will wrestle with the unruliness of the manuscript for a few months before she throws it back my way to carry on fighting that thing into submission. After more nail-biting and hair-pulling and gnashing of teeth, I will chuck that baby back in Elaine’s direction. Back and forth we’ll go until one of us yells ‘Uncle!’

After we’ve both come to the conclusion that there is no possible way to make the manuscript any shinier, we’ll high-five our way to the closest pub where we will imbibe a few and sleep it off before proceeding to step 3, which is to send it to award-winning designer, Natalie Olsen of Kisscut Design. Because you must never rush a genius, this will, of course, involve plenty of waiting mixed with difficult lessons in patience, and all of it sprinkled with a subtle sauce of unrelenting self-doubt and fear that we’ve missed something.

And then one day, we will get that email from Natalie that we’ve been waiting for. Attached there will be a couple of choices for the cover. Natalie created the cover art for A Root Beer Season, as well as When the Wheels Fall Off. For Root Beer, she created three choices from which I chose my favourite and then we tweaked until we were both seeing the same vision. By the time she created the cover art for Wheels, she knew so well what would hit that sweet spot that only one shot was needed.

Now it was time for the checklist: Acknowledgements, back cover copy, blurbs, ISBN, and reserve Owl’s Nest Books for the launch. All the boxes ticked. The only thing remaining is the notification that the printer has shipped the book.

Easey-peasy. With the enduring support and encouragement, not to mention the odd bottle of wine, from my Crabbie-Apple sisters, the seemingly impossible becomes possible and with everyone’s sanity intact.

Since, as is well-known in the Calgary writing community, winter traumatizes me, and for the most part, leaves me whining and snivelling on my sofa for the duration, the launch of Winging It will take place sometime in the late spring of 2017.

Watch this space!

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