Monday, November 25, 2013

Piece in The Walrus

Hello All,

The life of a pseudonym is pretty rough sledding. Or so I've heard. I don't have any familiarity with it, personally.


All best, Craig.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Wormhole / The Great Grape Pop Robber

Hello All,

Please find following a link to my essay, or "Ryeberg" in this case, called The Wormhole.

When I went to Banff as a part of the Wordfest festivities, I was approached by the ever-cool Erik Rutherford, curator of the Ryeberg series, and asked if I wanted to put together something for the event. I joined Andrew Pyper, DW Wilson, and Joanna Kavenna for an afternoon of Rybergs—which are essays accompanied by video clips, put together by Erik. It's a very cool concept and it was a very cool event, and I was happy to be a part of it.

As you might suspect, my contribution was a bit ... odd. You can hunt around the site, if you'd like, and find other great essays by some fantastic writers.


Also while I was at Wordfest, the lovely Maria Turner asked me to tell a story for her Carte Blanche "This Really Happened" reading series. I joined Michael Winter, Todd Babiak, Lisa Moore and Ophira Eisenberg. If you want to hear an audio recording of my scintillating, earth-scorching performance (because, y'know, I'm totally known for my verbal storytelling, scat poetry, and things of that nature ...) then feel free to check it out, too.


All best, Craig.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Giller Photos

Hello All,

Want to see all the fun and frivolity and razzamatazz that surrounds a swank event such as the Giller Prize ceremony? Well, too bad—I'm not the type to pose and tell!

Hah! Who am I kidding? Of course I am. I didn't have a camera on hand, because I'm a piss-poor planner, but there were Iphones and such aplenty, so treat yourself to some cellphone camera pics snapped by friends at the gala.

1. (R to L): Big Goofy Dude; Goofy Dude's Incredibly Hot and Elegant Fiancee.

2. (R to L): Superstar Editor Lynn Henry; Superlative Agent Kirby Kim; aforementioned Big Goofy Dude, just taking up space.

 3. (R to L): Goofy Dude and Superlative Agent, with a cool Iphone patina added.

4. (R to ): Big Goofy Dude and Hollywood Director Paul Haggis exchange witty banter (his side of it was witty, anyway).

All best, Craig.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013


Hi All,

Well, I didn't win. But more to the point, the wonderful Lynn Coady did win. I'm incredibly happy for her. She's been at this a long while, honing her writing, plus she's been through the awards wringer a few times already and this year, the wheel came around and scooped her up. She damnwell deserves it. Dennis would've deserved it too, and Lisa of course, and Dan and even myself I suppose. But Lynn is fantastic, a fantastic writer, dedicated as hell, and I (and the rest of the shortlisted writers) are incredibly happy for her.

It was a hella fun night. Colleen and I got to meet Paul Haggis (I had to confess that I got a little weepy at the trailer for Million Dollar Baby, when I saw it before The Aviator years ago; I'd read the short story collection it was derived from, "Rope Burns" by FX Toole, so I knew what was coming for Ms. Swank) and many other Canadian literary luminaries (Margaret Atwood! Michael Ondaatje! David Adams Richards! Joseph Boyden! Rohinton Mistry! Michael Winter! Elizabeth Hay! David Bergen! on and on it went). Talked about Don Carpenter's Hard Rain Falling with Jonathan Lethem. Wore a pretty slick suit, compliments of Strellson, Sharp magazine and Greg Hudson. Overall it was a hell of a night.

But what I enjoyed most is spending the majority of my time with the people who helped me get to the shortlist: my agent Kirby, my editor Lynn, publisher Kristin, Mark Medley of the Post, and of course Colleen. Would've been nice to have had publicist Scott and my folks and brother there, too—but it's a pretty tough ticket, so I couldn't have smuggled them in ... but as they say, they were there in spirit. Anyway, a guy realizes that he doesn't do anything alone, let alone write a book—people think it's a solitary profession, and it is, but without that critical support and guidance from people you trust and whose opinion matters crucially to you, man, you're sunk. At least I'd be sunk. So that was the jolt I got from the evening. Spending time with the people who were so foundational to me winding up in that ballroom in the first place.

And yeah, it was fun to get drunk with all of those people, plus Paul Haggis (I was drunk, anyway; Paul might've been stone cold sober). Good night. A very good night indeed.

Congrats to Lynn. She's fantastic. She's a marvel. I'm a fan myself. And this is so richly earned for her.

Want to watch the festivities? Click on this link:


All best, Craig.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Tonight's Readings at Koerner Hall

Hello All,

So there's a pre-Giller-night reading happening tonight, (Monday) at Koerner Hall in Toronto. The wonderful Eddie Greenspan will be reading from Cataract City. If you can't be here, didn't grab tickets, don't live in the city or whatnot, but still want to watch the festivities, you can see it via livestream starting at 8EST, I believe.


All best, Craig.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Is this the leering and vaporous face of a serial killer?

Hi All,

Ye GODS! I mean, really, Holy Mother of Merciful Angels!

Well, there's another one to add to the collection of the hideous photographs that pepper my existence as a writer; another framed snapshot, a memory frozen in time. It's mesmerizing, isn't it? You can't peel your gaze away from my vacant, tumorous little eyes, eyes that hive with a strange and repulsive avidity.

I think it's less the eyes than the weird set of my jaw, actually. I look like a traveling salesman who'd show up on your step with a briefcase of foot ointment ... but when I open up the case, cockroaches spill out instead as I laugh and laugh with crazed glee. Then I eat your face.

Anyhoo, what can you do? Perhaps I have a face made for radio, as they say. But remember, with the right lighting and proper handling, I can look like a normal human being:

Anyhoo (II), the top photo is a still taken from a video segment done as a leadup to the Gillers. You can watch my interview, and the ones with each shortlisted author, via the link below. They're all worth watching, if you're into that kind of a thing!


All best,