Tag Archives: George McWhirter

Pulp Literature’s Pushcart Nominees

We love all the stories in our magazine, and choosing which ones to submit for prizes is like choosing between one’s children.  But we only get to nominate six pieces for the Pushcart Prize, and this year’s nominees are:

  • ‘Stalk’ by George McWhirter (Issue 9)
  • ‘Taraxicum Officinale’ by Mary H Auerbach Rykov (Issue 9)
  • ‘Uncanonical Murder’ by Carol Berg (Issue 10)
  • ‘Vellum’ by Andrea Lewis (Issue 10)
  • ‘How to Write a Successful Obituary for a Superhero’ by Matthew Hooton (Issue 11)
  • ‘If You’d Like to Make a Call, Please Hang Up’ by Bob Thurber (Issue 12)

We have our fingers crossed and we wish these authors all the best of luck as we send their stories off.

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To read these fine stories you can purchase all four digital versions of the 2016 issues for only $15 on the Something Novel Kickstarter (select the Digital Sampler).  But hurry — only until 11pm today!

Pulp Literature Subscriptions on Kickstarter

By popular request we’ve added an option for 2016 print subscriptions for Pulp Literature to our current Colouring Paradise campaign.  That way, if you love your print copies of Pulp but have no use for a printed version of the colouring book, you can still renew through Kickstarter.

Issue 8 backA print subscription of four big issues is $60, which includes postage anywhere in North America, a digital subscription you can gift to someone else, and the pdf version of the colouring book.  You can add an additional year for yourself or a gift print subscription for someone else for only $30 — that’s half price!

Subscriptions can be back-dated to include 2014 or 2015 issues (subject to availability of back issues) or can start later if your current subscription hasn’t run out yet.

For 2016 we have stories from George McWhirter, Carol Berg, Matthew Hooton, CC Humphreys and more in the works.  We have a new novella series from Mel, The Seven Swans, as well as another Stella novella, the winners of the Raven Contest, and the final chapters of Allaigna’s Song.  Don’t miss out!

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/899865359/colouring-paradise-a-renaissance-inspired-coloring

The 2015 Magpie Award for Poetry

The results are in, and here is the report from the final judge, George McWhirter!

The finalists for 2015 were all masterfully precise and evocative at the same time, making a choice of top three not so easy. Finally, I opted for the following:

  1. ‘Caffe Pettirosso’ by Diane Tucker

I think the poem and poet speak for generations of café and restaurant goers whose main item on the menu is their sitting down to appear cool in a cool place, only to have, as on this visit, the afternoon light, the city’s flora and fauna outshine any of the bright lights and personae in the eating and drinking place. This other side of being part of the scene has just been waiting for this poem to happen—with its afternoon scenario, brilliant put-down and simultaneous illumination.

  1. ‘Water in the Way’ by Ace Baker

The drama in the poem of a trip (literal and metaphorical) into death and the consecration of the beloved dead-one’s remains, with the fish-shaped skull, to the deeps of mystery and the waters is spectacular. The moment of that fish arising out of those waters into indelible memory for the granddaughter and the poet solders emblem and epiphany to mine and makes a perfect consummation for the poem.

  1. ‘Wild Berry Suite’ by Jude Neale

This is an elegant and heartfelt elegy with resonant recollections and touching details, very human, very ordinary, but of that small order of the magically ordinary like the berries in the poem that once picked and basketed can be relished over and over with the wild bitter sweet mix of sadness and joy. The poem also mulls the rural and urban into a very special liquidity, the City of Vancouver and the countryside with the fluidity of the river that runs through both and which becomes the sound of Mary Greener Thompson to whose memory the poem is dedicated and that very easy to hear and listen to voice of the poet.

Congratulations to our three finalists, as well as to the rest of the entrants who gave them a hard run for their money.  Our first-place winner will receive $500 and the runners up each receive $50.  The three winning poems will be published in the Autumn 2015 issue of Pulp Literature.

We are thrilled to let you know that all three finalists are local and will be able to attend our awards presentation and reading on Monday May 25th, along with some of the other short-listed poets and both of our judges, Daniel Cowper and George McWhirter.

The Magpie Award for Poetry
magicforestmagpies3Poetry Reading and Award Presentation
Monday 25 May 2015, 6:30pm till ???
The Wolf & Hound, 3617 W Broadway, Vancouver

Please join us as we congratulate the winners with an evening of poetry and celebration!

The Magpie Shortlist

We are extremely pleased to announce the shortlisted poems for the 2015 Magpie Awards.  In alphabetical order by poem title the finalists are:

  • ‘Caffe Pettirosso’ by Diane Tucker
  • ‘Eighty-five green candles’ by Jude Neale
  • ‘Her tongue depressed’ by Sonia Jind
  • ‘Nana’s Hat’ by Jude Neale
  • ‘Northland’ by Ada Maria Soto
  • ‘The heart is a willow tree’ by Ev Bishop
  • ‘The Meadow Spittlebug’ by Monica Diaz
  • ‘Tool Shed’ by Matthew Walsh
  • ‘Water in the Way’ by Ace Baker
  • ‘Wild Berry Suite’ by Jude Neale

According to George McWhirter “The finalists for 2015 were all masterfully precise and evocative at the same time.”

Contest judges George McWhirter and Daniel Cowper will be presenting the awards to the winner and two runners-up on Monday May 25th at the Wolf & Hound pub in Kitsilano.  All the finalists who are local have been invited to attend and read their poems, and we hope you will join us too!

The Magpie Award for Poetry
Monday 25 May 2015, 6:30pm till ???
The Wolf & Hound, 3617 W Broadway, Vancouver

 

George McWhirter, Judge of the Second Annual Magpie Award for Poetry

george mcWe are thrilled that George McWhirter, Vancouver’s first Poet Laureate, has agreed to judge Pulp Literature’s Magpie Award for Poetry for a second time.

Last year’s finalists received not only his approbation, but in-depth and often extensive comments from a leader in the world of Canadian Literature.

We are most grateful and honoured to BC’s much-honoured poet, novelist, editor, and translator for saying yes to year 2 of the contest.

The closing date for entries to the Magpie Award for Poetry is April 15.


Here you will find an excerpt of George McWhirter’s  superb translation of “Solar Poems” by Homero Aridjis, at blogcitylights.

And here you will find a copy of his stunning poem “My Mother’s Red Shawl” on Alex Waterhouse Hayward’s blog.

 

Magpie Award Winners

The winners of the Inaugural Magpie Award for Poetry were announced last night at our Issue 3 Launch.

The shortlist, compiled by our poetry editor Daniel Cowper was, in alphabetical order by title:magpiesmaller

  • ‘Autumnal Equinox’, by Michael Patrick Eltritch
  • ‘Bear Medicine’, by Ryan Tilley
  • ‘Big Red Schoolhouse’, by Ace Baker
  • ‘Cocktail Noir: The Liquid City’, by Glenn Pape
  • ‘Grateful’, by Liya Khan
  • ‘Ice Fisher’, by Judith Neale
  • ‘intimacy requires more’, by Daniela Elza
  • ‘Riverbank’, by Ada Maria Soto
  • ‘The Arrangement’, by Judith Neale
  • ‘Wax-winged Icarus’, by Kate Austin

Contest judge George McWhirter was impressed with the overall quality of the entries, and from the shortlist selected the following poems, with this to say:

Honourable Mention

‘Riverbank’ by Ada Maria Soto, and ‘Cocktail Noir: The Liquid City’ by Glenn Pape.
The latter was “[A sparking piece that] … just couldn’t quit, like the persona, and if it had stopped after the first section, it would have been a contender for its seriously humorous subject and treatment of it.”

Second Runner-up

‘Autumnal Equinox’ by Michael Patrick Eltrich.
“… it is spare and unsparing, economical with its words and sad wisdom. The resonances in big words like ‘the end’ are orchestrated through the subject’s, the retired architect’s mind into an almost too-sharp perspective by the poet interpreting his position in time and his position on time. Very close to home for someone like me, in his seventies.”

First Runner-up

‘intimacy requires more’ by Daniela Elza
“[This poem] could have got tangled in the length of the analysis of this very delicate, but demanding subject, which itself is made up of demands.. It could have become too abstract, but then as its lines go, intimacy is more than being “shoved against    the wall/ opened       like a cupboard/ scribbled      on a scroll…” It’s hard to renew interest in things that rotate and reform, but they come back surprisingly in altered perspective with surprising phrasing. This is the kind of poem I would not normally keep reading, but I did with this one.”

Magpie Award Winner

‘Big Red Schoolhouse’ by Ace Baker
“The poem in 1st place, ‘Big Red Schoolhouse, keeps us up to our elbows in the muck of the moment and the situation with the calving.  I felt I was physically at the other end of the rope in my new jeans, and my uncle was a world away from where I was at and right beside me at the same time, handing me that rope to tie around the calf’s hocks to haul it out.  The poem is dynamic and dramatic in its details, as elegiac as it is realistic and beautifully sequenced through stanza and line.  I might even say choreographed, a choreographed chaos of feelings and action, dominated by a double dimension of obligation to the birthing and to the uncle.  Wonderful poem.”

We couldn’t agree more.  We were fortunate Ace was at the launch last night to receive his cheque for $500 and read his poem out loud.  We’re looking forward to publishing it and the runners-up, who will each receive a cheque for $50,  in the Autumn issue of Pulp Literature.  The contest was judged blind, so the judges had no idea when they selected Ace’s poem that it would end up published alongside his short story ‘Victory Girl’ in Issue 4.

Congratulations to all!

 

 

 

Poetic Inspiration

The deadline for Magpie Poetry Award entries is this coming Sunday, June 15th.  With the pressure now on, we’d like to offer you this poetic gift from contest judge George McWhirter:

On the Globe Maple

Our globe put on such a leaf-dress, such puffy pantaloons,
only for those clothes to fall, get gathered up and put away
by us autumn widows and widowers, no longer allowed
to burn organic garments,
and with no compost room left to let them rot.

Easier to give them away to the city
in a bin — glad to do so, despite that blinding blur
the globe wore with its full jewelry of September sunlight
(no summer modesty of limbs, clothed in green anonymity, then —
or the tight taciturnity of young spring bud). Patiently
we packed away those arboreal duds, waiting for the next discards
on our boulevard – espoused
as we were to a globe maple the city shot-gunned
us into accepting and slowly, reluctantly loving
to live in its shade and shelter, held up politely
like an umbrella whenever we got in or out of the car.

But I’m not sure we ever looked forward to its coming out,
the Persephone performance, each year, after the spell
of its sap’s cessation in hell. Especially after its lopsided
growth, too oblong for its roots and hefty trousseaux of snow,
piled on (to have us recant our wanting a cherry tree instead),
which broke it down to a crescent, an icing-coated croissant,
a third of its former self. The rest lay, distressing us in the gutter,
a gowling globe till the city came and chain-sawed
a final separation for us, leaving the bulk of the wood.

We will bask soon in that settlement, by the fire,
after giving ourselves a little space — on the boulevard.

George McWhirter

George McWhirter to judge the Magpie Poetry Award

George McWhirterWho better to judge our inaugural Magpie Award for Poetry, than Vancouver’s inaugural Poet Laureate, George McWhirter?

The much-lauded poet, novelist, translator and editor has been instrumental in the development of BC’s literary scene, both as a long-time editor and advisor at PRISM international, and as a well-loved professor and Head of the Creative Writing department at UBC.  He has been awarded too many prizes for writing and teaching to list here, and we are thrilled and honoured that he has agreed to judge our first ever contest.

For a small sample of his vast body of work see this poem on the blog of Alex-Waterhouse Hayward (whom we have to thank for putting us in touch).

The closing date for entries for the Magpie Award for Poetry is 15 June 2014.  Contest guidelines are here.