Tightrope Books

Jim Nason Workshop Handouts Ready for Pickup

By Tightrope Books | September 29th, 2009 | Print This Post | Email This Post | Leave a Comment

The handouts for Jim Nason’s workshop, Teaching Intuition, are available for pickup at the Tightrope office by those who have registered. (The handouts are: Don Domanski, “Flying Over Language”; Donald Hall, “The Master”; and Gary Short, “Outlines.”)


Canadian poet, Don Domanski, describes intuition as “an unpredictable whisper against the skin, something that defies logic.” In this workshop, writers will explore ways of getting to the creative wonder that is beyond the demands of the intellect.

The workshop will take place at the Tightrope office, Saturday, October 10, 12-5 p.m. There are still a few spots open, so register now at http://tightropebooks.com/workshop-series/.

Our first workshop, the 21st-Century Canadian Sonnet with Molly Peacock, was a roaring success. An attendee had this to say:

The workshop with Molly Peacock was an invigorating kick in the pants. Molly’s vibrancy, enthusiasm and laser keen eye for detail changed the way I engaged not just with my own work, but with the larger body of contemporary poetry. Warm,witty and insightful, Molly’s boundless energy buoyed me up for days afterward.”

Morgan Harlow Reviews The Best Canadian Poetry in English 2008

By Tightrope Books | August 25th, 2009 | Print This Post | Email This Post | Leave a Comment


The Best Canadian Poetry in English 2008 is the inaugural volume of this series in Canada. Edited by Stephanie Bolster, the series editor is Molly Peacock.


“Who do you think you are?” asks Stephanie Bolster at the beginning of her introduction to
The Best Canadian Poetry in English 2008. It is a phrase, she explains, that refers to a “reluctance to pronounce a viewpoint,” making an apt launching point for a discussion on the responsibilities of the role of editor in a ‘best of’ series. “Who do you think you are?” echoing the Alice Munro story of that title, is also a political statement, for Bolster and in this context conveying a sense of what it is to be Canadian, to be a woman, to be a poet.

As an American, a United States citizen writing a review on The Best Canadian Poetry in English 2008, I, also, begin by asking myself, “Who do you think you are?” Most of what I think I know about Canada, its literature, music and art, feels somehow mythic and iconic. Northrop Frye, the Group of Seven, Gordon Lightfoot, Stan Rogers, Leonard Cohen, several successful writers of fiction, and Anne Carson come to mind. And of the country itself, though I’ve taken three road trips through Canada, twice west and once east, with stops in many of its major cities, I’ve found that what I know best about Canada is that it is diverse, and not at all easy to define.

Read the rest of the review here: http://toddswift.blogspot.com/2009/08/guest-review-harlow-on-best-canadian.html

Tightrope Workshop Series

By Tightrope Books | August 20th, 2009 | Print This Post | Email This Post | Leave a Comment

Introducing the Tightrope Books Workshop Series!

Tightrope Books’ monthly writing workshop series connects published authors with people interested in receiving advice and instruction in the idiosyncratic art of creative writing. Whether you’re an experienced writer looking to bounce ideas off an established fellow traveller, or a neophyte writer hoping to arrange your creative ideas in verse or prose, the workshop series offers an exceptional opportunity for you.

Workshop 1: 21st Century Canadian Sonnet Studio with Molly Peacock
September 12, 12 – 5 p.m.

Is there a 21st century sonnet? A Canadian sonnet? Why has the sonnet persisted, ebullient and lively, after six centuries? How has it renewed poetry and poets? In the 21st Century Canadian Sonnet Studio, we will take a deep dive into as many aspects of the sonnet as we can: a brief history of the sonnet, the techniques of writing them, the sonnet as the classic form of the love poem, the challenge of making the form new in the 21st century.

This sonnet studio is designed for all levels, beginning to advanced. For students who don’t know what a sonnet is, it will provide chances to try the “beginner’s sonnet;” for those who have some familiarity, the studio will offer opportunities to deepen knowledge; and for participants who have been writing sonnets all their lives, Molly Peacock will offer the challenge of writing sonnet crowns. The Sonnet Studio offers an opportunity for supervised writing in class as one paints in a classroom studio as well as workshop discussion.

Workshop 2: Teaching Intuition with Jim Nason
October 10, 12 – 5 p.m.

Canadian poet, Don Domanski, describes intuition as “an unpredictable whisper against the skin, something that defies logic.” In this workshop, writers will explore ways of getting to the creative wonder that is beyond the demands of the intellect. Paradoxically, they will also discover that creativity is not strictly an intuitive process; rather, it involves discipline, research, a willingness to trust the tension between structure and chaos, and a commitment to letting go of preconceived notions of outcome. Aspiring poets will understand the importance of craft, structure, revision, and point of view. Various exercises will illustrate how to enter the poem, surrender to the flow—how to work with words and images to craft a poem that defies and defines logic.

Required Reading: (Handouts will be provided 2 weeks in advance of the workshop.) Don Domanski, “Flying Over Language”; Donald Hall, “The Master”; Gary Short, “Outlines.”

For more information or to enroll, click here: http://tightropebooks.com/workshop-series/

Tightrope Books Launches The Best Canadian Poetry 2008

By Tightrope Books | October 15th, 2008 | Print This Post | Email This Post | Leave a Comment


Tightrope Books is proud to present the launch of its much-anticipated new anthology series, The Best Canadian Poetry. The evening’s celebration will include readings by Canada’s best poets, including Jim Nason, Dani Couture, Sadiqa de Meier, Michael Lista, Al Moritz, David Seymour, and more.

Tuesday November 11 2008 7:30 p.m. Revival, 783 College Street West (at Shaw) Toronto, ON.

From a long list of one hundred poems drawn from Canadian literary journals magazines, this year’s guest editor, award winning poet Stephanie Bolster, has chosen fifty of the best Canadian poems published in 2007. With this anthology readers, baffled by proliferating poems and poets, can for the first time tap into the remarkable and vibrant Canadian poetry scene. Readers are invited to explore the currents and cross-currents of poetry in a distinguished volume distilled by a round robin of esteemed editorial taste.

About the editors:

Molly Peacock is the author of five volumes of poetry, including Cornucopia: New & Selected Poems. She is the Poetry Editor of the Literary Review of Canada. Before she emigrated to Canada in1992, she was one of the creators of Poetry in Motion in New York City, and she served as an early advisor to Poetry On The Way. Her reviews and essays have appeared in the Globe and Mail, and her poems have appeared in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, and the TLS. She lives in Toronto.

Stephanie Bolster‘s first book, White Stone: The Alice Poems, won the Governor General’s Award and the Gerald Lampert Award in 1998. She has also published Two Bowls of Milk, which won the Archibald Lampman Award and was shortlisted for the Trillium Award. Her work has appeared in literary journals internationally and has also garnered her the Bronwen Wallace Award, the Norma Epstein Award, and The Malahat Review’s Long Poem Prize. Her several chapbooks include, most recently, Biodme and Past the Roman Arena. Raised in Burnaby, B.C., she now lives in Montreal, where she teaches in the creative writing programme at Concordia University.

Tightrope believes this anthology will be a meaningful contribution to the ongoing literary dialogue in Canada as well as a way to bring the best of Canadian poetry to the attention of the reading public in both Canada and the world.