brittni in ink

a writer's blog

holiday draw

Congratulations to Sarah O. for winning The Patch Project Holiday draw! You can watch the draw video here.

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The Green Bean Festive Market was a wonderful event! All of the vendors were cool and friendly, and there was a steady flow of people mingling and checking out the tables throughout the day. I’m very happy to report that all of the copies of The Patch Project I brought to the event sold! I still have buttons and copies of “Showing Her Teeth” available, so if you’re interested in picking up a locally-created illustrated story, let me know!

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This’ll be my last blog post of 2018. Thanks to everyone who read, reviewed, or gifted a copy of The Patch Project this year. Thanks for coming out to events, or meeting up with me to talk about the book. Thank you for hosting book discussions, for requesting copies for your local library, for sharing and commenting on my social media – for all of the ways you’ve reached out and supported my journey as an author. I couldn’t do this without all of you.

Hope you have a wonderful season of Christmas and holiday celebrations, and wishing you all the best for 2019!

 

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festive times

It’s the last Patch Project appearance of 2018! I’ll be running a vendor table at The Green Bean Festive Market, happening this Saturday, December 8th from 11:00 – 5:00 pm. Drop by, say hi, and enter the free draw for a chance to win a signed copy of The Patch Project!

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There will be buttons and copies of “Showing Her Teeth” as well as copies of The Patch Project available for purchase. Plus, a ton of amazing local creators and crafters are going to be there!

After Saturday wraps up, I’ll be taking a break from events for the holidays. I’ve set a deadline for editing the sequel to The Patch Project – final draft by the end of February! – which is exciting! It’s been a different kind of writing process from the first book, which I may consider posting about in the new year. I’ve also been more intentional about reading lately, and am working on getting the last book of Ursula K. LeGuin’s incredible Earthsea cycle. It amazes me that I’d gone so long without reading them!

I’ll be back next week to announce the winner of The Patch Project holiday draw!

 

Are you taking a break for the holidays? Or is it a more productive time of year for you creatively?

it’s a major award!

I’m not the kind of person who wins things. I think I won a raffle once when I was a kid for this giant Easter egg cake. My Dad and I wrote a simple melody on the piano when I was five, and I won a trophy for that.

But as the years wore on, I became more and more disheartened by things you could win. My sister and I both entered a poetry contest in junior high and her poem won. She was published in a collection and got to attend a book signing. I was happy for her, but also crushed.

I’ve never won a writing contest of any kind. Not for magazine entries, not for short stories, not for plays. After a while, I stopped sending in things altogether.

But at the ChiSeries Windsor Best of the Best of the Best event last night, I was given a trophy for making up a story on the spot (and bribing some key deciders, though that was encouraged by the rules of the event. You could also get bonus points for tipping the bartender or wearing a funny hat. It was that kind of mischievous night.)

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Photo by Ben Van Dongen

I’ve trained myself not to expect to win anything. Maybe some of you can relate. Don’t want it too much and it won’t hurt if you don’t get it. But last night reminded me that winning is more than being the best at something (or worst, depending on the category. The worst poetry award, for example). It’s about showing up. About taking risks and learning from past experience.

And showing up is something that the arts community needs. It needs people to show up and show their support for what artists are doing. It needs artists to show up and risk being honest and vulnerable with their work. It needs a lot of people to show up to build off of past events and create a space for artists.

That’s how we all win as the arts community. With that in mind, I’ve decided to make more of an effort in the new year to show up at arts events. Not every single one, because that would lead to serious burnout. But more of them. And if I can’t be there, at least spread the word.

I mean, if I hadn’t gone to the event last night, I wouldn’t have met the people I did, I wouldn’t have gotten up on stage and read a story I made up. I wouldn’t have taken home a trophy that the organizers put time and care into making. It took energy to get there, but once I was there, it was so worth it.

Showing up means we can all win, together.

 

Do you have an experience winning or not winning something? What do you think “showing up” means in the arts community?

**the featured photo for this post was taken by Christian Laforet

book signing review, things ahead

Thanks to everyone who picked up a copy of The Patch Project on Saturday! The book signing went super well, and I loved the atmosphere Juniper Books provided. So welcoming and relaxed. If you missed this event, no worries! I’m hoping to have another signing there in the spring. Copies of The Patch Project are still available, so if you need an excuse to visit one of the coolest bookstores ever, stop by Juniper Books.

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Peter, myself, and Taylor at Juniper Books

December 8th, I’ll be at the Green Bean Festive Market from 11-5. As the first chapter of The Patch Project takes place on Christmas eve, I think it makes for a good fit. Plus, there’s going to be a ton of local vendors; if you’re looking for handmade/ locally-made holiday gifts, this is the place to be!

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ChiSeries Windsor is hosting their last event of the year this Wednesday, November 28th. “The Best of the Best of the Best” is a celebration of making up stories and bad poetry, and should be a fun night! If you would like to participate, and possibly win one of the awesome trophies, you can sign up on their Facebook page.

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From the ChiSeries event earlier this year – one of the first readings I did for The Patch Project

 

november tidings

It’s been a few weeks, but I’m ready to get back into the book game!

Coming up this Saturday, November 24th, I’m going to be signing things at Juniper Books! It’s going to be my first book signing, so I’m not sure what to expect! But I’m really excited to partner with Juniper Books on this event.

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If you’ve never been, their space is super cool. Each room is filled with books, cookbooks in the kitchen, fantasy novels in the attic – a treasure trove of unique finds! Copies of The Patch Project will be available for sale, and I’ll also have a holiday draw set up for a chance to win a free copy!

If you can’t make it on Saturday, I’ll also be at The Green Bean’s Festive Market on December 8th!¬† More details on that next week, it’s going to be a great collection of local talent!

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Also, thanks to everyone who’s been asking about how my NaNoWriMo project is going. I’m having a particularly tough time getting motivated this year, but hopefully I can get a few more words in before the end of the month.

Are you doing NaNoWriMo this year? How’s your project going?

halloween week

Thanks to everyone who came out to the Feminist Fair this past Saturday! I met some super cool vendors, picked up some neat items, and also got to talk about The Patch Project with people. Vendor fairs are always a little intimidating for me: I’m not the best self-promoter, and I tend to be a bit socially awkward. But the atmosphere was great, and there was plenty of coffee, so it all turned out just fine.

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It also helped that I was sharing a table with the super talented Tajana Ristic! If you didn’t get a chance to pick up a copy of “Showing Her Teeth”, I still have a couple available: Tajana illustrated a short story of mine into a beautiful seven page comic, and the new prints of it are outstanding.

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I’ve got a bit of an event break now. But NaNoWriMo is coming up! I’ve decided to work on a screenplay I’ve been tinkering with over the past couple months. Nothing like a daily word count to get the writing brain working!

I hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable Halloween week! We’re probably going to watch some Halloween classics and eat way too much sugar. How about you?

“intellectual gore”

If you haven’t listened to Daniel Romano’s new track, check it out and tell me what you think because I’m a little obsessed. “…compliment the colours of our intellectual gore” is a lyric I keep coming back to. So good!

Anyway! Hello, and here is a quick reminder that The Feminist Fair is taking place this Saturday, October 27th from 10:00 am – 4:00 pm. It’s going to be at the Green Bean Cafe, one of my favourite spaces in the city. Apart from the location, I have no idea what to expect! Many of the vendors are bringing arts and crafts and zines, with a focus on feminist literature and empowerment. I’m looking forward to being a part of it and meeting everyone!

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Hope to see you there!