The idea of this blog is to facilitate the love of reading by collecting news about new books, or sometimes good old books. It is also dedicated to stamping out the scourge of e-books, Kindles, Kobo's, i-Pads, and all other such abominations.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Cam Stirs the Pot

Our dearly beloved Nanaimo-bred author Anne Cameron, now of Tahsis, has struck some sparks (No! Not Cam! Shocking!) by announcing in BC Bookworld's 20th Anniversary issue that "For me, the Bookstore on Bastion Street was the best damned bookstore in the country and did far more for writers in B.C. than Malaspina College, which should get the spud-butt award for the spread of illiteracy in thisprovince. They, and some other colleges and universities, have acted as ifthe printed word was dinosaur dung..."

This has elicited a query from a defender of Malaspina to the effect, "Will you tell me why you think this of Malaspina?"

To which the mild-mannered author replies: "Sir:For absolute years I made sure Malaspina College knew the Canada Council would pay writers to give readings, workshops, etc., and for absolute years if it hadn't been for The Bookstore On Bastion Street there wouldn't have been a Canadian writer doing anything at all in Nanaimo.Malaspina College has done amazingly little to recognize the writers in the region, on this Island, on this coast or in this province.At a time when JACK HODGINS, one of the finest Canadian novelists, was teaching at NDSS, Malaspina College could not seem to find time, or interest, to have him do a reading.I have done one reading at Mal Col. in more than twenty years.I don't actually think Malaspina College deserves the Spud Butt award. I don't think it deserves any awards at all."

So what do you think, dear readers? With all due respect, Cam has not been around the Malaspina campus much recently, and perhaps things have changed from the era she references. We would like to think so. But the question is fair: has our local u done its part to recognize and nurture local lit?

And dare we ask what the Spud-Butt award is?


Blogger anne cameron said...

I'm going to go nuts! The techno-savvy required to post here is just about more than I can manage.

I wrote a loooooooooooong comment but then the machine said I had to have a Google account and a nickname and a password and..somewhere, somehow, in the getting of all that my timeless prose was lost.

The spudbutt award is a seldom granted artifact suitable for desk top, or place of honour on a book case. Hand crafted from a carefully selected Netted Gem it features a particular portion of the human anatomy up which too many heads are too often shoved.

This whole thing is taking on a life of its own. We've made it to the point where Chummy has turned the entire matter over to the administration of Malaspina College and the last word received from him was, I believe , that he hoped they sue'd our spudbutts off.


Chummy wants to sue me.

Those who know me can probably imagine just how terrified I am at this point. I'm just a little old age pensioner who has hermitted herself in a not-quite-but-almost-ghost-town on the west coast of Vancouver Island. After a looooong lifetime as a fulltime writer I have ten times the square root of sweet diddle for anyone to snatch away from me but still and all Chummy wants to sue me.

I do not tremble for my few earthly chattels. I tremble for any vestige of literary freedom. If Sue becomes the knee jerk reaction can Censorship be far behind?

Seems, and this is only my take on it so believe not one word I write, seems Chummy wrote a letter to the magazine and said letter was not immediately published. So Chummy turned the whole thing over to the administration in the hope they would sue my spudbutt off.

Well, welcome to the world of writing. You write something, that doesn't mean it gets published immediately. I think "Gone With The Wind" floated around for ten years before someone took a chance and published it. Seems to me Ken Kesey had one heckuva time getting "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest" published.

They didn't sue anyone because it didn't get published immediately.

Oh well.

As I understand it, the letter will be published.

Oh, thank God, I was afraid the world would end.

Writers, real writers, get used to not being published. We almost expect to not be published. When we do manage to get published we can hardly believe it's going to happen. Even a Letter To The Editor can be a cause for celebration. Writers have been known to become absolutely rhapsodic at the mere prospect of one day possibly being published.

They don't sue!
There's no suing in the big leagues.
No crying allowed. Dead men don't whine.


Has "sue" replaced "smite"? You know smite..he smote him hip and thigh...that's euphemism and supposed to suggest castration. Has more socially acceptable tenor than cut his knackers off.

They used to smite, now they sue.

Honestly. Or as close to honestly as one can get in these days of discontent.

Wants to sue my spudbutt off. Well, if he's going to act like that he for sure isn't getting the award!

I wrote it once and I'll write it again, ya ready? "The Book Store On Bastion Street" did more for writing, writers, reading, and readers than Malaspina College did.

What Malaspina College is doing now that The Book Store On Bastion Street is gone is something of which I have neither knowlege nor opinion.

Well, actually, I do have an opinion, the thought of me not having an opinion will have those who know me rolling on the floor. However, one does not wish to be smote nor sue'd so I'll keep my opinion to myself.

Hey, I can apologize. I can even appear to apologize sincerely. I'm a writer. I write fiction. What is fiction but a lie? So I'm a skilled liar. I can apologize and appear to mean it.

We're snowed in up here. I am not pleased.

7:15 PM  

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