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Guernica Editions launches Polish(ed) anthology

I'm honoured to have my short story "Paper Icon" included in Polish(ed): Poland Rooted in Canadian Fiction, among such Canadian literary lights as Eva Stachniak and Ania Szado. Polish(ed) is an anthology of Canadian fiction by or about members of the Polish diaspora.

On a gorgeous fall Sunday, I and my writing buddy Kasia Jaronczyk drove into Toronto's Kensington Market neighbourhood for the launch of Polish(ed). Kasia happens to be the co-editor of the book. Anyway, it being a beautiful day, pedestrians were strolling everywhere and parking spaces were nonexistent; I ended up with a $50 parking ticket, which Kasia and I split. But back to the launch ...

Guernica Editions was launching a dozen titles that afternoon, and from the introductions and readings I got a sense of the publishing niche that Guernica occupies, publishing literary fiction and nonfiction usually from writers who are, or whose families recently were, immigrants to Canada.

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"Paper Icon" in Polish(ed) anthology

In fall 2017, Guernica Editions releases POLISH(ED): Poland Rooted in Canadian Fiction, edited by Kasia Jaronczyk and Małgorzata NowaczykPOLISH(ED) is an anthology of short fiction by or about the Polish diaspora in Canada.

Distributed by the University of Toronto Press, the book contains short stories by emerging and established writers. Two of the latter are Eva Stachniak and Ania Szado.

So, I'm honoured that my short story "Paper Icon," first published in Other Voices (Edmonton) in 2011, appears in POLISH(ED). The tale follows a widowed Polish immigrant in Stratford, Ontario--home to an international Shakespearean theatre festival--as she struggles to keep open her run-down bed-and-breakfast shortly after 2008's global financial crisis.

"That's Not Bhangra" places in Ten Stories High

On a dull, snowy Saturday, my wife Jeanine and I were happy to drive to St. Catherine's, ON, where I was honoured to read at the launch of the Canadian Authors Association's (Niagara) launch of Ten Stories High, its 2017 short-story contest anthology.

Ten writers had stories in this, Volume 17 of Ten Stories High. From all the entries, 40 were selected by CAA Niagara volunteers for the judge, André Narbonne, who is a University of Windsor lecturer and member of the Writers' Union of Canada. Mr. Narbonne determined the 10 winners -- seven honourable mentions (including mine) and three prize winners; all of us read at the launch.

"That's Not Bhangra" (2,600 words) is about a middle-aged woman who, as a young person, had wanted to be a ballet dancer. Based (extremely loosely) on my own experience, the tale addresses the theme of artistic rebirth. All selected stories in the anthology dealt with rebirth in various forms, and the cover illustration, with its death-i…