Read Trev’s Books (not all of them) at Issuu

Once I shared this with my mother (and the art world), it was safe to share with the world! You can find my latest zine – Trev’s Books: Unpacking My Grandfather’s Library at Issuu.)

Without repeating the zine itself verbatim, this zine is an extremely personal one for me. When my grandfather passed away in January, I inherited his (extensive) book collection, as I was the only other one in the family who could describe themself as a “book person.”

Books were the only thing Grandpa and I had in common so of course unpacking his library was how I worked through a complicated grieving process (if you ever actually work through a thing like that). And, of course, I made a zine about it!

A Breach at Stronghold – now on Gumroad!

screen-shot-2020-06-05-at-11.15.34-1A Breach at Stronghold, the murder mystery party game I debuted amongst the privileged elite* back in February is now finally formatted and available for sale and download on Gumroad!

This thing was a precious labour of love and an amazing challenge. How do you write a compelling murder mystery, break it into nine, satisfying pieces, and do that all so everyone comes away feeling like you didn’t undermine the character they’ve taken to heart? 

The Gumroad download provides PDFs that print easily (if you need to print at all) on 8 1/2 x 11, but I’ve also included a Print variation for tactile beings like myself who love things like long-reach staplers for making booklets and staining paper with tea to fashion cryptic clues. (You can never really get the zinester fully into the digital age.)


*Nine of my most excellent friends who are always up for dinner theatre, gaming, overall shenanigans, or all of the above.

Museum of the Western World & Trev’s Books with BIBLIOCACHE

As a certain big-eyed ingenue once said, life moves pretty fast sometimes.

We’ve barely got Museum of the Western World printed and it’s already out in the world! So is Trev’s Books! (I’ve also sent them my old classic What I Did on a Saturday Afternoon!)

I was invited by Aaron Moran to contribute new zines to Poor Quality’s BIBLIOCACHE exhibit at the Vancouver Book Art Fair at Emily Carr University. The exhibit runs this weekend from October 18-20, 2019!

Be sure to check it out!

Reviews are in for Redwing!

The first review came in for Redwing: Speculative Fiction Takes Flight. It is a glowing review from fantasy magazine Black Gate that also includes an enlightening discussion about the increasing visibility of small presses and what that means for niche readers and writers.

Be sure to check it out and discover other amazing authors in Redwing!

Madrid, Before a Recession

a rare excursion into poetry

I’ve written a total of about four poems in the last seven years. Two are terrible. Another two, not so bad.

One of those not-so-bad two, Madrid, Before a Recession, appears in Ataraxia Vol. 4.

 

Interview with Polygon for ‘Archie out of Context’

Yes, oh, yes. We all have “side hustles.” There’s a strange implication in that phrase that distinguishes it from “hobby.” And Archie Out of Context is a tad too strange to pass for a hobby. It’s a bit more of an afterthought, really. Certainly not someone I put any work into. But alas. Only seems fitting that it should be so wildly popular.

Read the interview here.

Interview with Quarter Castle Publishing

Another shameless plug. This time an interview with Quarter Castle Publishing. Behold, my majesty!

I have to admit that I love talking about my writing process.

It forces a level of self-reflexivity that I think is healthy, as well as provides a valuable time to reflect on the effectiveness of my process.

Also, I am vain.

(Also also… that picture of me had a plate of pierogis artfully cropped out.)

Quarter Castle Publishing

Author InterviewAshleigh Rajala of New Westminster, British Columbia, is the author of Working Title, the winning submission in Quarter Castle Publishing’s first short story writing contest.

Recently Quarter Castle Publishing interviewed Ashleigh.

QCP: When did you decide to become a writer?

Ashleigh: I remember a moment as a book-obsessed child where I realized that someone created those books and that I too could do that. The first story I wrote was about a dinosaur, and my mum sewed a cover onto it and everything. Sadly, this opus has been lost to history. So I never really decided, it was just something I have always done.

QCP: Do you write every day? If not, how many days do you dedicate to writing?

Ashleigh: I write every day. Sometimes life gets in the way, but that’s okay. But I try to never let myself stop if I’m feeling blocked or less than…

View original post 1,178 more words

Quarter Castle Chronicles… chronicled

I am extremely thrilled and humbled to share that Quarter Castle Chronicles, Volume One, is now available in print and e-book!

Quarter Castle Chronicles ~ Volume One showcases 13 short stories by 12 Canadian authors. They take place in settings across the country, both in the present and the past. From the rugged coast of Newfoundland to the streets of Vancouver, we are flung to far off places like Romania and Swaffham Prior. The authors spin tales of life, survival, death and the realm beyond.

The Chronicles include the winners and honourable mentions of the 2014 Quarter Castle Short Story contest. My piece, Working Title, was the winning story, which humbles me so greatly I’m sitting on the ground as I write.*

Please, check it out and be still my pride.


*That’s a lie. It’s an office chair. But I’m on the setting closest to the ground. You’ll just have to trust me on that.

Consider the Working Title Worked

I’m happy to share that one of my works has been included in the latest issue of WomenArts Quarterly Journal.

Based out of the University of Missouri-St. Louis, WomenArts Quarterly Journal (WAG) is:

an initiative of Women in the Arts, aspires to nurture, provide support, and challenge women of all cultures, ethnicities, backgrounds, and abilities in their role in the arts and seeks to heighten the awareness and understanding of the achievements of women creators, by providing audiences with historical and contemporary examples of the work of women writers, composers, and artists.

And thus I am really proud to be included in their ranks.

Continue reading “Consider the Working Title Worked”

Unmasked with Crab Fat!

A short story of mine – a slightly awkward New Journalism-inspired piece – is up online at Crab Fat Literary Magazine.

Unmasked! is an expose of the long-since retired superhero as he at long last reveals his true identity to the world.

I’m quite pleased with this piece, but I’ve been sitting on it for a while. It’s such an odd little number that it’s been hard to place with a publication. (Naturally, a magazine called Crab Fat seemed the logical solution.)

The Review is in!

The first review came in for Redwing: Speculative Fiction Takes Flight. It is a glowing review from fantasy magazine Black Gate that also includes an enlightening discussion about the increasing visibility of small presses and what that means for niche readers and writers.

“Ticker Tape Kings” by Ashleigh Rajala is next, a time travel story unlike any I’ve read. It plays around with tenses and with conventions — not so much conventions of time travel, but of time travel stories. Elegantly written, it gives the protagonist a difficult character-based choice to make, and follows her as she makes it.

Thank you so much, Black Gate!

Presenting Redwing

2aceedf2-c678-4d53-9ed0-bfac020cbad0Ah ha! The much awaited publication of Redwing is here!

Redwing: Speculative Fiction Takes Flight is available as an e-book for Kindle and Kobo. With ten stories for $2.99, that’s mere pennies per mind-blowing experience!

Somewhere within that epic of majesty is my piece, Ticker Tape Kings… a strange meditation on time travel and the realities of the past. I hope you enjoy it; I’m rather proud.

When I was Thirteen a Thesaurus Lied to Me

ataraxiaContrary to the alleged wisdom of Roget’s Super Thesaurus 1995 edition (what deemed it “super” the tome never explained): “poetry” and “prose” are NOT synonyms. Thirteen-year-old me did not realize this. I trusted the almighty power of the printed word. Old notebooks now hold embarrassing hand-lettered titlepages. Of course, by “hand-lettered,” I mean letters cut from Seventeen magazine like a ransom note.

I digress.

Full disclosure: I don’t write poetry very often.

Continue reading “When I was Thirteen a Thesaurus Lied to Me”

Hark! A Prophecy!

1979738_10152198477557550_1451357022_nIn the hallowed halls of Main Street, in the aptly named Cottage Bistro, there shall be a gathering, and this gathering shall be called “The Launch! with PRISM, Event, poetry is dead, and Room Magazine.”

The date of this party shall be the seventeenth of April (a Thursday, methinks), in the year of 2014.

And the time of this event shall be seven in the evening.

And there one Ashleigh of House Rajala shall go forth and read aloud the words issued by her own hand.

Or, in the words of the event organizers:

Please join us as we celebrate our latest issues and the spirit of literary magazines in BC!! With special musical guests ‘Vocal Jazz Jam with Woolysock Band.’ Readers include: Billeh Nickerson, Dina Del Bucchia, Ashleigh Rajala, and Karen Lee. Our MC is Elizabeth Bachinsky!

In other news, I’m running out of creative ways to make simple announcements.

A ROOM of My Own… Bad Puns

37.1-web (1)I have a short story in the latest issue of Room, Canada’s oldest literary journal by and about women! This print journal is available at bookstores around Canada (if you’re lucky enough to a.) live in Canada, and b.) frequent bookstores, and c.) be capable of reading things undeliverable via an electronic device).

The piece is called Kings Cross, a short segment I had been working on for a while, and seemed perfectly at home in this issue about Fashion, Trend, and Personal Style 37.1.

Please check it out as there are many other great pieces by other exciting writers, such as the lovely and talented Taryn Hubbard!

Chiselling Away at Genre Expectations

steelchisellogoOver at The Steel Chisel, you can find a short story of mine, “Scenes from a Road Movie.” This is a piece I’d been sculpting away at for a while, so it seems only appropriate that it be published somewhere with “chisel” in the name.

The Road Movie is one of my favourite film genres. I wrote a paper on the Canadian Road Movie in university and the first “novel” (I use the word novel here so loosely it doesn’t even have grasp on itself) I wrote – when I was twelve – was called Road Trip. I’ve always found something fascinating about a journey rendered literal. Perhaps this comes from a similar well as my love of travel.

Continue reading “Chiselling Away at Genre Expectations”

Fiction and Festivities with Sassafras Literary Magazine

The pleasure is mine to announce – imaginary megaphone in hand – that I have a piece published in the most recent issue of Sassafras Literary Magazine.

In their sixth issue, Sassafras, have gathered an excellent collection of other short works of art, poetry, fiction and non-fiction that I am proud to be in the company of. They are all far too talented to end sentences with prepositions, as I have just done.

skc3a4rmavbild-2013-11-25-kl-16-15-19The piece is the first page of a novel that I completed a first draft on almost two years ago and have left to quietly simmer in the distance ever since.

Coal Dust is narrated by a recently deceased teenager, Jamie. But it is not a fantasy. Jamie is not in heaven, is not a ghost, is not anything of the sort. He is simply dead. This is also not Jamie’s story. It is the story of Jamie’s two half-siblings, Caroline and Stuart (step-siblings to each other), and how they struggle to redefine themselves after the death of the one person who might have made them a family.

Jamie as narrator began as an experiment. Is it possible to have a narrator simultaneously omniscient and first person? I think it turned out quite well, but as a writer, I have that horrible affliction where I am completely unable to be objective.

Alas, I ramble. Such is my right and my shame.

Please do not judge Sassafras because of my arrogance. They are awesome.

Plug Away, You Shameless Plug

I’m not even going to try for the humblebrag. I straight-up won the Sad Magazine Fantasy Fiction Contest. *cheers*

I’ve known about this for a month, where I received the news first thing in the morning whilst unshowered and annoyed in a terrible London hostel. It made my day then and it still makes my day, which, I guess, means it made my month.

logo

Part of why we flew back into town when we did was so I could do an interview for them, so, in turn, I could look doughy and uncouth.

Anyway, I shall continue to strive for modesty ever after, but tonight I dine on something that takes more than one pan to cook* because tonight we celebrate!

____

*We just moved a week ago and haven’t bought new pots and pans yet. It sucks.

Which Drunken Story to Tell…?

The good people at The Round Up Writer’s Zine have published a piece of mine of great intellectual snobbery…

… namely the story of time I got really drunk on Sambuca while camping.

Aviary Photo_130301688959671352

This was for The Moonshine Edition, which was seeking embarrassing drunken stories. With the piece entitled “Always the Sambuca,” I have to admit that I don’t know if this is actually the most embarrassing drunken story of mine, but it’s definitely top three.*

_____

*The other two would have to be “The Night of the Mustard” and “The Incident With the Kiddie Pool,” if you have to know.

Waiting (2010)

After all that… *ahem* waiting, my short film, Waiting, is finally up on the interwebs.

This was a short I did for Langara Film Arts program in April 2010. It screened at a few film festivals around the world, as well as in the (surely annoyed) faces of last year’s Langara students as a promo for the film program.

Apparently, it’s not that bad a film.

I’m rather proud of it. That bus stop sign was in my house for over two years.

Archie… Out of Context and into the fire

So, The Commune is full of Archie comics.

The explanation is thus:

When Dr. Roommate, Ex-Roommate, and myself all moved in together, Dr. Roommate found a couple of Archie comics in a box of random shit she had. Naturally, we indulged in some gleeful nostalgia and read them cover to cover.

One day my thirteen-year-old cousin mentioned that she had a bunch of Archie comics, as all thirteen-year-old girls seem to do. She said she could give me any of her “doubles.” (If you were once a thirteen-year-old girl you know what this means.)

Continue reading “Archie… Out of Context and into the fire”

re:moved

I’ve recently had the chance to join an interesting project by Allison Lasorda.

The Re:moved Project is “an interactive visual narrative project that features individuals’ experiences with home. by examining unique perspectives on homes that have been “lost” (whether through relocation, demolition, or (re)construction) this project aims to remove the stigma associated with nostalgia and, possibly, to provide comfort by allowing constructive participation in it.”

Continue reading “re:moved”

SFU Writer’s Studio Reading Series

I will not be reading from ‘pirates in space.’ Sorry.

If you, like most of humanity, find me charming, intelligent, affable and engaging as hell to listen to, then thank whichever god you think created you because I am going to be doing a reading! If you find me to be none of the above, then luckily for you there will be other readers as well.

This is all part of the SFU Writer’s Studio Reading Series, more details on which you can find here.

7 pm, July 15, 2011 @ Take 5 Café (429 Granville Street at Hastings, in downtown Vancouver)

So join me alongside several other local writers, where I’ll be reading some stuff from projects I’ve been working on and possibly some short fiction. Things might get interesting.

Anno Domini Gallery’s 2011 Art of Zines in San Jose

The 2011 ART OF ZINES exhibition will run for four weeks at the Anno Domini gallery in the SoFA District of San Jose, California. Quoth Anno Domini: “Zines are one of the last frontiers for freedom of speech and creative self expression and we need it now more than ever.” This year’s zine exhibition will run in concert with the SubZERO Festival, a celebration of subculture artists, performers and musicians that begins June 3, 2011.

So, if you’re in San Jose this June, be sure to check out the gallery and my little precious artifacts of precociousness:

… and perhaps there will be other fun stuff too.

A Tale of Two Distros

Thanks to Harley Pageot for letting me get my grubby mitts on the copy of this! And thanks to Alex Gurnham for making me sound smart!

Check it out in the Fall 2010 issue of Broken Pencil (#49)!

Langara College Film Arts Unlock the Vault

Come one, come all to Unlock the Vault, the night we unleash our final project films upon the world!

7 pm on August 20 at Langara College (100 W 49th, Vancouver)

My little labour of love, My Funny Valentine (ecrit par Robyn Thomas, realise par moi) will be closing the night, following:

Sparrow, written by Robyn Thomas, directed by Kaitlyn Reid
Zeldon’s Excursion, written & directed by Liz Bailey
Missing Link, written by Erik Hoffman, directed by Jordie Keith
Puppet Magic!, written by Lauren Richardson, directed by Michael Goyert
Junk TV, written by Shayan Bayat, directed by Anna Larrina
Next Door, written by Shayan Bayat, directed by Doug Ferguson
Identity Thief, written & directed by Mitchell Politeski

Come and check it out, we’re proud little parents of our cinematic offspring.

Excerpts from an Interview with Myself

Okay, exciting, I know. Transcript/rip-off of my interview with Whohub.com (from sometime last spring). I was discussing my writing process with someone today, and it made me want to blog about it (naturally). Then I remembered this interview, so I thought I would share this instead. I wrote all the answers, so I feel no guilt in repeating them here.

What did you first read? How did you begin to write? Who were the first to read what you wrote?
I first read the back of milk cartons. But I mostly just looked at the pictures. It made the story easier to understand. Even at such a young age, I got it. The cows like eating daisies, they smile, while blinking their pop art eyelashes. They are happy to have their teats violated for me. I think from here I moved on to picture books, but those memories are all a little hazy. Must have been all the Children’s Tylenol I was jacked up on.

I began to write in kindergarten. I had just learned a new skillset: the proper etiquette for eating paste. I was a sick kid (all the paste, of course) and spent about three weeks in hospital, during which I completed my opus. It was magnificent; something about a dinosaur. It glittered. I made a cover out of cardboard, which my mother had to sew together as the doctors had banned all paste.Continue reading “Excerpts from an Interview with Myself”

On to the next project that will encompass my entire waking life for the next several weeks.

Filmtoberfest was this past Saturday, so that explains my: a) lack of blog posts, b) lack of sleep, c) lack of a balanced diet, d) lack of a social life, e) any other number of reason why I’ve been general weird(er).

The night went off with minimal hitches, and they were all technical, so – as the Artistic Director – they were officially Not My Problem. We screened nine films in total: Naked and Pigmalion, two shorts by QLP-alum Juan Riedinger, Jack of Hearts directed by Robert Tunold, Bored Game from 4 Cooks and directed by Daniel Zwiercan, the animated The Other Side, directed by another QLP-alum, Jennifer Guglielmucci, 3.8 Litres Per Flush directed by Christopher Westendorf, The Little Girl directed by Dae-Youn Hwang, Boxed In directed by Kial Natale, and, of course, QLP’s latest, Red Hood directed by Joe Verde and starring Becca Strom and David Quast. So many people came up to me to tell me how impressed they were by the films and by the evening in general, so hopefully this is the start of something special (and a great confirmation that we, QLP, should continue to do what it is we do). I would love to keep something like this going annually, so keep tabs on QLP!

We Want the Airwaves, Baby

What comes first, the writing or the apathy? Last Sunday I was interviewed on the Storytelling Show on Vancouver Co-Op Radio (CFRO 102.7 FM) by Taryn Hubbard, my partner in crime for the epically infamous artlit zine, Hacksaw. I managed to escape the hour-long interview without sounding like anything you’d buy at Home Hardware (read: “a tool”). Taryn asked some pretty hefty questions, to which I even suprised myself on the answers. Without restating the obvious, The Storytelling Show is about telling stories – Oops, that was a bit obvious, eh? – only the women who usually go on the show are dealing with the written word. Taryn wanted to explore the medium of film as an avenue for telling a story, and thus, there I was. In fact, here’s a picture of me there to prove it. It’s not a very flattering picture, is it? I look pudgy, but in a waxen way: like if it was a hot day and you touched me, you’d leave fingerprints on my skin; if you poked me harder, your finger would leave a little concave impression, like when you poke a cake in the oven that’s not quite ready.

Anyway, Taryn asked me an interesting question, one that I never fully considered before: When I’m writing, what comes first, the images in my head or the words on the page? I had to think about this. In a knee-jerk reaction I almost said the images, but I guess that’s what happens when I write for film. The medium is visual so that is how I think about it. (Perhaps that is part of what draws to me to film and theatre?) However, in blogs and things like this, I’m obsessed with words. I harbour secret ambitions to be able to string together a sentence with the superhuman abilities of Douglas Coupland or Charlie Brooker. I told Taryn – and it rings true – that when the images come first, whatever I’m writing ends up a script; when it’s the words, it ends up prose. I’m currently working on one epic story, and my writing process for this labour of like has been the rarest of rare. It breaks my previous patterns. You see, there were no images, no witty aphorisms that sparked my creative purge. It was a premise. A simple concept slowly expanded into the creation of an entire fictional world and fully formed characters. The plot came next. While it’s leaning towards script, I still don’t feel that instinctive grab in the gut telling me it’s a movie. I thus feel this ambivalence that it might just end up a novel? Sometimes I appreciate the lack of method in my madness, other times I just get mad.

You can hear the radio interview here, just find Aug. 30 at 21:15ish to 22:10ish.

Filmtoberfest – seeking your (preferably non-porn) short films

(Shameless plug alert)

We, the lil’ indie folks at QLP, are getting ready for Vancouver’s inaugural Filmtoberfest and we need your films! Yes, your short films. Or films about shorts. Either is good. However, anything over fifteen minutes is probably too long. So are capris.

Anyway, Quarter-Life Productions, in association with 591 Productions, are currently seeking local independent filmmakers with short films for the inaugural event! An evening of film, frivolity (and possibly leiderhosen), this event will kick off in October 2009 and will be an excellent opportunity to get together with other local filmmakers and industry professionals and enjoy the cinematic delights October has to offer! Since, really, I don’t know about you, but that’s why I got into this business. October rocks, and so does film. Why not put them together and see what happens? There will also likely be drinking after.

But enough about the event, right now we are looking for independent short films of any genre so there is an evening of fun to begin with. Sure we could just get together and drink, but then it’s not Filmtoberfest, it’s just Oktoberfest, and I’m pretty sure that’s already been done. Not only does this night need to be awesome, but it’s needs to be unforgetable. So unforgetable that even the after-party binges won’t blitzkrieg those precious memories. Dude, we need these films like zombies need brains. So send us your films! Now. Because I told you to.

The gritty details: Continue reading “Filmtoberfest – seeking your (preferably non-porn) short films”

Hacksaw in all its Issue Two Glory

So, without even pretending to mask this blatant display of self-promotion, the second issue of Hacksaw is available! This issue is, dare I say, better than the first. This is good news, as people generally prefer the quality of something to increase. At least, this is what our rigorous marketing studies have shown. Just kidding. We don’t have a marketing budget. In fact we hardly have a budget. For this issue we argued the guy at Kinko’s down almost 50%, then spent a bit of what we saved on beer. This is how we kick it indie style.

I’m not entirely sure how a running commentary on the latest issue ended with a reference to a night at the pub, but that is usually how most things end around here. Anyway, I’m proud of this issue. Not only did we get submissions from all across the Lower Mainland and across Canada, but also from the UK and from Israel. It’s quite the globetrotting micro-adventure. I even worked wonders with a stamp carved out of a potato. Call me cheap/creative, but that was a fun night. This also means that each and every copy has a unique touch, which is part of what Taryn and I wanted when we originally discussed our unofficial mission statement in an evening of insobriety.

If you were interested, they’re going for $4 each, and you can get them from me (email me at ashleigh@qlp.ca), or online here. Also, and this is not entirely confirmed (as we haven’t actually dropped them off yet), it will also be available at The People’s Co-op Bookstore on Commercial Drive.

What I Did on Saturday Afternoon: the Zine

So by Saturday I was feeling marginally better. I was able to do something other than watch all of season four of Battlestar Galactica, and since that was all I had done the previous two days, I was also feeling undeniably creative. I don’t know. The impulse to create overtook me. I wanted to write, I wanted to draw; but I also wanted something more frenetic and crazy, with lots of scissors and glue.

I ended up taking a random assortment of things I had written in the last several years (going back to 2001 at the earliest) but never really did anything with, and compiled them into a quarter-page zine, fittingly titled: What I Did on Saturday Afternoon. I had most of it together beautifully, but realized that there was something poignant missing. I searched back through the darker recesses of my iBook and found some random passages of reflection that I compiled in the years after my grandmother’s death.

That miniature memoir, coupled with poetry, microfictions, a monologue, drawings, photographs, and photocopies of random things I found in the cupboard under the stairs (where I keep the photocopier), when assembled into a whole, went from what I intended to be an exercise in randomness to an interesting study of self. When placed together, these orphaned artworks of the last ten years of my life presented a fantastic collage of all the people I’ve been in that time. It was such a remarkable side effect of self-reflexivity and past/present/future that I feel somehow changed. Like this acknowledgement (or release even) of my past work will allow me to reconcile this different facets, let me put them behind me and move on artistically. When I first started, I had an idea what my back cover would be: a photocopy of a Joe Strummer quote that I had hanging over my desk for the last three years, that says: “The Future is Unwritten.” By the time I finished the zine, I handwrote under that: “only the past is written. and not very well.”

I recommend to any writer or artist with those little scribblings, half-started projects, and unacknowledged musings to do the same. You will feel exposed, vindicated, rewarded, and infinitely free.

Defining oneself is the most difficult and useless thing ever.

I had to supply my bio on all voices. This is what I got:

Ashleigh Rajala is a writer/filmmaker/magazine editor/miscreant who uses backslashes far too often to be healthy. She enjoys non sequitors almost as much as spelling inconsistencies and philosophical questions. What colour would “color” be if it were a tangible object?

Suggestions?

Will Blog for Food

this epic week, part four

I also got a letter from Langara college, saying they’ve received my application for the Film Arts program, but that they are still waiting for my university transcripts. I called SFU to ask, “Quoi le fuck?” and was politely told that they had been mailed. With any sort of equus attire up my ass, they’ve already received the transcripts and there’s a letter at home as I write telling me I’ve been accepted.

As for today, I got an unprecedented email from the lovely (I’m assuming) people from all voices saying that they ventured upon my blog, this blog, and that they wanted me to consider writing for them. I’m going to spend this weekend considering their offer (and my boss’s), and will thus have a hefty Monday looming. Hopefully it won’t pass into nothingness like most other Mondays.

Lastly, this happened far earlier this week, but I wanted to save the best for last. This will go down in history as the week I published The Savannah Stories, Series One: The Frampton Menace. The first few copies I’ve ordered are in the mail, and once I’ve checked them over, I will proceed. (“How?” you ask. I don’t know yet. I make this up as I go.) It’s available to order through Lulu.com, whom I totally and utterly recommend for any self-publishing ventures! You can buy it here: BUY ME. The book is $17.99+S&H. I will love you forever. And ever.

Here’s the description:

Printed: 224 pages, 18.91 cm x 24.59 cm, perfect binding, black and white interior ink

Description:
One eventful day, Savannah Hunter gets an unexpected ‘I need a favour’ phone call from Jason Manning, an old friend who managed to screw up his life fast enough to set a few world records. Naively taking pity on him, Savannah lets him into her home with half-open arms. Suddenly, her apartment has become a stage show full of characters so colourful they might as well dress as a packet of Skittles for Halloween. As the horrors of the male geek world fall down upon her like Overeater’s Anonymous at a Las Vegas breakfast buffet, the parade of guys begin to monopolize the apartment through various events like a 48-hour long Survivor game on the sofa, a trip to the VD clinic, the construction of a fully-operational battlebot, and many other surreal events that not only border on insanity, but completely conquer it.

Sure I’m a Marxist, of the Groucho School

this epic week, part two

By Wednesday, I had already watched my favourite movie of the week twice. No, it’s not 8 1/2, but rather A Night at the Opera, the 1935 Marx brothers classic. Groucho has some of the best one-liners I’ve ever heard in my life. I’d marry him if it weren’t for the fact that I’d get sick of wiping the grease paint off my face every time we kissed, not to mention the fact that he’s dead.

I was also delighted by something in my inbox that wasn’t work or friendly information on how to enlarge my penis. Who Hub said they’d heard about me (I still don’t know how) and wanted me to give them an interview for their website. I spent most of the day writing and revising the interview, and you can view it here: My Pretentious Attempt to Sound Like an Expert. I was actually quite arrogantly pleased with my interview. I did spent nearly an entire day on the taxpayer’s dime refining it, so it should be pretty damn good. Here’s a sample question:

What did you first read? How did you begin to write? Who were the first to read what you wrote?
I first read the back of milk cartons. But I mostly just looked at the pictures. It made the story easier to understand. Even at such a young age, I got it. The cows like eating daisies, they smile, while blinking their pop art eyelashes. They are happy to have their teats violated for me. I think from here I moved on to picture books, but those memories are all a little hazy. Must have been all the Children’s Tylenol I was jacked up on.

I began to write in kindergarten. I had just learned a new skillset: the proper etiquette for eating paste. I was a sick kid (all the paste, of course) and spent about three weeks in hospital, during which I completed my opus. It was magnificent; something about a dinosaur. It glittered. I made a cover out of cardboard, which my mother had to sew together as the doctors had banned all paste.

From Magazine Vendors to Muddy Boots

my weekend in an adequately-sized organic vessel

After an intriguing afternoon of gallavanting all over Vancouver, including a far too long walk down East Hastings (FYI, Spartacus Books has moved even further east down Hastings), Taryn and I found a vendor for Hacksaw! *cue rejoicing peasants* You can now get Hacksaw Literary Arts Magazine at People’s Co-op Bookstore on Commercial Drive!

Two celebratory beers and some plantain chips later, I was arriving at a sushi restaurant for my godsister, Natasha’s engagement party. Despite not knowing anyone when I got there, the evening was well spent; several potty breaks making up for the endless pots of green tea. I can’t wait for the actual wedding. Open bar, dude, open bar.

Saturday I recuperated, then walked around the dirt in burlap boots for awhile, before retiring to bed to watch Bones. All and all, a nice little Saturday.

Up at five am the next morning for our first day on location filming “Red Hood.” The day can simply be summarized with a few adjectives and nouns: Freezing weather, muddy fields, vehicular accidents (not me!), dusty barns, leaping frogs; and a few verbs: action, cut, that’s a wrap.

Quarter-Life Productions Launch Party

Come one, come all!

All of us at Quarter-Life Productions are hosting a party to celebrate our venture into pre-production for our short film, tentatively titled, “Things I Hate”!

This launch party will provide an opportunity for everyone to come by and see what we’re all about! If you’re interested in auditioning for an acting role, helping out with either the technical crew or the art department, think you have any skills or talents we could use, or just want to see what it is we’ve been up to all this time, please come on down!

The party is happening on Saturday, February 4th, at Ashleigh’s house! A wine and appetizer reception starts at 7:00 pm, with a presentation to follow at 7:30 pm. It will be a lot of fun, so please come and check us out!

You can email quarterlifeproductions@gmail.com if you have any other questions or would like directions!

Thanks again!

Ashleigh Rajala
Artistic Director
Quarter-Life Productions