The good news is that the City's proposed cuts to arts and culture have been stopped. This means that Bywords has a busy season ahead of proposal writing and planning for the coming year.
This month's issue of Bywords.ca features the work of two poets: Leanne Averbach, a poet, filmmaker and renaissance woman, who has come to Ottawa to read in the past, and Bernard Alain, a former New Brunswick resident, who now lives in Ottawa, who has been writing poetry for six years. It's great to see both emerging and established poets finding a home for their work here on Bywords.ca.
We're putting the finishing touches on the winter Bywords Quarterly Journal and have started the planning for our January reading.
After the turbulence of the past few months with threats of arts cuts, it's nice to have time to slow down and plan again; however, if the City continues to provide a disruptive and unstable funding environment for the arts, it will be very difficult to plan and to make various partnership agreements with other organizations. It is my hope that City Council adhere to its pledge and make a lasting and real commitment to the arts and state clearly that the City supports art and culture in Ottawa.
If you're around this month and haven't left for warmer climes, you will still find a few events to attend, such as the Bill Brown 1-2-3 poetry slam on December 18 at the Umi Café, where people compete for a prize of $100, the Dusty Owl Chocolate House and Ottawa Food Bank fundraiser on December 21 and the Peter F. Yacht Club X-max Party and launch of the fifth anniversary issue on the 28th at the Carleton Tavern. Please check the Bywords.ca events calendar for further details. Remember though, before making plans to attend an event at this time of year, it's best to check with the organizers to ensure it hasn't been changed or postponed due to the holidays. This is particularly important for reading series.
Thanks to this month's selection committee:
Andrew Faulkner, Stéphanie Lafleur, Megan McGrath, Sean Moreland, Leigh Nash, and Pearl Pirie.
To the readers, contributors, volunteers, sponsors and supporters of Bywords, I wish you all a good holiday.
If you have questions, comments or chocolate santa tree decorations, please send them my way: firstname.lastname@example.org.
See you in 2009!