This week, we get first proofs of our upcoming winter issue. We’re excited to get our paws and our pens on this soon-to-be Brick, which features marvellous writing by such masters as Jan Zwicky, Kirsty Gunn, Karen Solie, Javier Montes, Pasha Malla, Sunila Galappatti, and Lisa Moore; it’s even got poems by Pablo Neruda—and a surprise something we’ll share more about soon… (Ahem: may we recommend you take the opportunity to subscribe or renew?)
Editor Michael Helm Shortlisted for Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize
We’re thrilled by the news that Brick editor Michael Helm’s new novel, After James, has been shortlisted for the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize. As the Globe and Mail reports, the jury calls the novel “a warning, a lament, a virtuoso engagement with our times,” and “a singular puzzle-box of a novel delivered in gorgeous prose.”
Contributing Editor Madeleine Thien on Man Booker Prize Shortlist
We’re completely thrilled to see contributing editor Madeleine Thien’s new novel, Do Not Say We Have Nothing, on the shortlist for the Man Booker Prize for Fiction. Her exquisite novel tells the story of a family of musicians in revolutionary China, from the first days of Chairman Mao’s ascent to the Shanghai Conservatory in the 1960s and the events leading to the protests in Tiananmen Square in 1989.
In her Brick 95 piece on reading Dream of the Red Chamber, Thien tells the story of encountering in real life the story of a book just like the one she had written into this incredible novel.
We’re pleased to welcome you to our new mobile-friendly website, created with the generous support of the Canada Council for the Arts. Please stay a while and check it out. And why not use the occasion to subscribe or renew before the frenzy of fall sets in?
We owe deepest thanks to our remarkable developer, Matthew McKinnon, and brilliant designer, Mark Byk, who both put incredible work into making the site you see here today.
Nadia Szilvassy Steps Down as Publisher of Brick; Laurie D. Graham Hired as Publisher
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
TORONTO/June 9, 2016—With the publication of Brick 97 this month, Brick announced that Nadia Szilvassy is stepping down from her role as publisher of the magazine. She will be officially handing her publisher responsibilities over to poet and editor Laurie D. Graham at the end of June.
In her Publisher’s Note to the new issue, Szilvassy announced her departure, writing, “It’s been over nine years since I first arrived at Brick. No spring chicken, but nonetheless a fledgling in the field of publishing, I found myself all of a sudden swept up into the midst of countless passionate conversations about writing, art, and life that reached from our Toronto hub out and around and across the world. My head still spins.” (more…)
Summer is here, and with it, a blockbuster Brick, exploding with wonderful reads and powerful photographs. In Brick 97, we celebrate of the life and work of two longtime contributors and dear friends, C. D. Wright and Jim Harrison. We share with you two excerpts from our tributes here:
Karen Solie on reading C. D. Wright for the first time and being riveted by her “poetics of constant revision, movement, and the considerable courage it takes to maintain, even in times of necessary anger, the wonder that should make an artist intrepid.”
Brick 97 features Jan Zwicky on poetry and meaninglessness, John Berger at the seaside, Rivka Galchen’s tango with bureaucracy, Madeleine Thien translating Khun Srun, Helen Guri becoming Al Purdy, fiction by Miroslav Penkov and Horacio Castellanos Moya, Pasha Malla on Nelson the Clown, and much more.
In less than a month, we’ll be celebrating the launch of Brick 97 at the Lucky Shrike Bar (850 Dundas Street West, Toronto). Hosted by editor Michael Helm and featuring special guests, it’s going to be one heck of a bash. So please, save the date and join us as we welcome our glorious summer issue into the world!xXx: Return of Xander Cage (2017)
“Why are we going to this place anyway?” Elijah asked, looking up again from a busy page of brilliantine sunbirds. What was I supposed to say? Was I supposed to say we were heading to a stone on the edge of Africa to look at horror? Was I supposed to say that we were going there to remember? To remember what? His double-coloured eyes, hazel inside azure, probed my silence.
We’re delighted to offer Stephen Marche’s Brick 96 essay, “The Age of Ephemerality,” in full text on our website. Read it here.
This week, Brick is in Los Angeles for the 2016 AWP conference and book fair, the largest literary conference in North America. From Thursday, March 31, to Saturday, April 2, we’ll be at booth 1359 in the Los Angeles Convention Center, offering terrific deals on subscriptions, issues, custom Brick Moleskines, and tote bags (and trying to sneak in as many panels and readings as possible).
Stay tuned on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram for photos from the road—or if you’re at the conference, swing by booth 1359 to say hi!
We’re shattered by the loss of beloved Brick contributor Jim Harrison, who died at his desk on Saturday, March 26. From the conclusion of Jim’s Eat or Die column from Brick 86, a poem:
To remember that you’re alive
visit the cemetery of your father
at noon after you’ve made love
and are still wrapped in a mammalian
odour that you are forced to cherish.
Under each stone is someone’s inevitable
surprise, the unexpected death
of their biology that struggled hard as it must.
Now go home without looking back
at the fading cemetery, enough is enough,
but stop on the way to buy the best wine
you can afford and a dozen stiff brooms.
Have a few swallows then throw the furniture
out the window and then begin sweeping.
Sweep until you’ve swept the walls
bare of paint and at your feet sweep
the floor until it disappears. Finish the wine
in this field of air, go back to the cemetery
in the dark and weave through the stones
a slow dance of your name visible only to birds.