Literary Landscapes (CKCU)

I’m Christine McNair, one of four hosts for CKCU’s Literary Landscapes. My co-hosts are Dave Currie,  Kate Hunt and Neil Wilson. The half-hour show runs on Thursdays at 6:30 PM and can be heard at 93.1 in Ottawa or online (live stream only) at www.ckcufm.comWe take turns hosting and each of the hosts has a different bend to their show. (The show is technically called Literary Landscape (singular) but I rather deliberately use the plural.) Mine tends to focus on production and the inner workings of something; ie, the book as physical object, what it’s like to be a publisher/first-time novelist/chapbook press/small bunny/etc. I’ll often choose my topic as a response to whatever’s happening in Ottawa. I let my guests pick some of the songs played during the show.

You’ll find a summary below that includes a list of songs played and some of the recorded interviews (available for download in either wav, m4a or mp3 format). I usually improvise some blather/introductory remarks during the live in-studio show, in case you’re wondering why that’s not included in some of the early recorded interviews. You can also listen to some of Kate Hunt’s shows here:

List of upcoming shows (which hosts when):
May 23: Christine McNair
May 30: Dave Currie
June 06: Kate Hunt
June 13 : Neil Wilson
June 20 : Christine McNair
June 27: Dave Currie
July 04 : Kate Hunt
July 11 : Neil Wilson
July 18: Christine McNair

my previous shows

Misc. shows (descriptions to follow):
Interview with Natalee Caple (missing first few minutes):

Interview with Maggie McGovern on the CBBAG Book Arts Fair: 

Interview with Christine Poutney:

Interview with Rhonda Douglas:

Interview on Northern Scene festival:

Interview with Rachael Simpson:

Interview with rob mclennan on small press book fair:

Interview with Johnny Pigeau:

Interview with Jaime Forsythe and Alice Burdick:
March 29, 2012
Curses upon the Euro Shades calling card. Interview with derek beaulieu postponed. I played a goodly amount of Daniel Lanois’s album The Messenger whilst cursing at tech. I will not post my shame!

March 1, 2012
A Versefest Miscellany. Playing excerpts and miscellany to do with Versefest 2012. Shiny magpie like. Includes pieces by readers at the festival, such as C.R Avery’s ” The Boxer Who Just Returned from London. “Asking for Flowers”(Kathleen Edwards); “Everything Counts” (Depeche Mode). Listen to entire show here: VerseFest miscellany

Feb 2, 2012
Rod Pederson Discussion about the upcoming Versefest, Ottawa’s annual poetry festival. We discussed last year’s festival, upcoming events, the challenges and benefits to working with a wide range of interests/groups. “Tonight You Belong to Me” (Zoey Deschanel and Ben Schwartz); “Poetry in Motion” (Johnny Tillotson); “Vilanelle for Our Time” (Leonard Cohen). Listen to entire show here:Interview with Rod Pederson

January 2012
No show – due to trades with other hosts

December 22, 2011
An interview with Joe Blades on his recent book Casemate Poems. We spoke about his residencies in the casemates, his poetry, the literary community, small press publishing and his work as a book artist. Listen to entire show here: Interview with Joe Blades

December 8, 2011
I spoke with Lillian Necakov who was in town as part of a Mansfield Press reading where she launched her book Hooligans. We spoke about her work, the Boneshaker reading series she co-ordinates in Toronto, science, HeLa, and the interplay between her work as a librarian and her poetry. “Pilot of the Airwaves” (Charlie Dore) “A Body’s In Trouble” (Mary Margaret O’Hara). Listen to the entire show here: Interview with Lillian Necakov

November 10, 2011
An interview with Jennifer Still who was in town promoting her new book, Girlwood (Brick Books, 2011). We spoke on motherhood, readings, memorisation, Winnipeg, and negotiating the past/present. “Little Earthquakes” (Tori Amos); Little Earthquakes; “Crimson and Clover” (Joan Jett). Listen to the entire show here: interview with Jennifer Still

October 13 2011
Discussion with Sandra Ridley about her upcoming reading at the Ottawa International Writers Festival and her new book Post-Apothecary (Pedlar Press, 2011). Sandra read from her book and we talked about the impetus behind her new book, editing, breath based poetry, Jennifer Still, the Thin Air festival in Winnipeg, the upcoming Ottawa International Writers Festival, and sundry other details. “Spooky” (Dusty Springfield); “Werewolf” (Cat Power). Listen to entire interview here (mp3): interview with Sandra Ridley

August 18, 2011
Interview with Justin Million and Leah Mol. Justin and Leah both have new chapbooks published by Cameron Anstee at Apt. 9 Press. We discussed the  chapbooks,  science, modernism, life as a writerly couple, the line between fiction and non-fiction, influences from their studies at Carleton, their upcoming move to Vancouver, and the importance of confusion. “All Revved Up With No Place to Go” (Meatloaf); “Your Ex-Lover is Dead” (Stars).  Listen to the entire interview here (mp3): interview with Justin and Leah

July 21, 2011
Interview with Trish McNair, a teacher-librarian working in Beijing.  We discussed the challenges of working in international schools, cultural specificity, her involvement in the Beijing Literary Festival,  and schools for migrant children. “Summertime” (Janis Joplin); “Too Darn Hot” (Erasure). Listen to the entire interview here (mp3): interview with Trish McNair.

June 23, 2011
Interview with Robert Earl Stewart, whose second book Campfire Radio Rhapsody was recently published by Mansfield Press. Robert read two poems then we discussed how his poetry has shifted from the first to second book, reading for an audience, the relationship of his work to music and photography, thoughtful absurdity, working in fiction/poetry, and the importance of the poem’s architecture. I read the June 22nd entry of Letters to Salonika by Robert Kroetsch. “Come In Alone” (My Bloody Valentine), “Slow Motion” (Panda Bear). Listen to the entire interview here (mp3): interview with Robert Earl Stewart

June 9, 2011
Discussion with rob mclennan and Dave Currie about the ottawa small press fair, In/Words magazine, upcoming chapbooks, the Writer’s Circle at Carleton, and sundry related topics. “Common People” (William Shatner); “Rat Rate” (Hundreds and Thousands). Listen to the entire show here (mp3): rob and Dave

May  26, 2011
Interview with Elisabeth Harvor about her new book of poetry, An Open Door in the Landscape, published by Palimpsest Press. Elisabeth read from her work and we discussed the editorial process, unexpected leaps, and her recent poetic statement. “The Only Living Boy in New York” (Simon and Garfunkel). “Famous Blue Raincoat” (Leonard Cohen). Listen to entire show here (mp3): interview with Elisabeth Harvor.

April 28, 2011
Interview with Ruthanne Edward about the new Once Upon a Slam reading series. Ruthanne told a story then we discussed the new series and its upcoming Sex and the City event with Paolo Balbi and Davide Bardi, Ottawa Storytellers, and the relationship between storytelling/audience. Brief anticipation of events at the Ottawa International Writers Festival. “It’s A Shame About Ray” (Lemonheads); “Like a Hurricane” (Neil Young). Listen to entire show here (mp3): Ruthanne interview

April 7, 2011
Interview with Alastair Larwill about his new role with the Sasquatch reading series. Alastair read a short poem then we discussed his involvement in the series, open mics, his introduction to the Ottawa literary community, his participation in Messagio Galore, sound poetry, Gustave Morin’s recent talk in Ottawa, and the Eco-Jestus project. “Hey” (Pixies); “Street Spirit (fade out)” (Radiohead)Listen to the entire show here (wav): Alastair

Mar 10, 2011
Interview with Marcus McCann about his upcoming talk, “No Permissions: Why Poets Don’t (and Shouldn’t) Ask Nice.” Marcus will be speaking at a Factory Reading series VERSefest event on March 11th with Monty Reid. We discussed recent controversies about the poet’s obligation to his source material, the use of found poetry, and plunderverse. We also discussed the upcoming WestFest literary lineup. “The Words That Maketh Murder” (PJ Harvey); “Every Day I Write the Book” (Elvis Costello). Listen to the entire show here (mp3): marcus

Feb 3, 2011
Interview with Larry Thompson of Greyweathers Press about the book as object, the Canadian Bookbinders and Book Artists Guild — Ottawa Valley chapter; the Ottawa Press Gang; the upcoming Book Arts Show and Sale in Ottawa, publishing, and his collaborative work with his partner Holly Dean. “When Doves Cry” (The Be Good Tanyas); “Grapefruit Moon” (Tom Waits). Listen to entire show here (m4a): Larry Lit Landscapes

Dec 22, 2010
Interview with jwcurry regarding the upcoming Messagio Galore take VII. We talked about sound poetry, previous Messagio Galore performances, how pieces are selected for inclusion in the program, and the process of working with a group. “Mescal Rite 2” (Tomahawk); “Malka Moma” (Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares). Entire show (kindly recorded by Brian Pirie) can be found here (mp3): LL with jwcurry.

Dec 09, 2010
Interview with Claudia Coutu Radmore whose first collection of poems, a minute or two /without remembering (Two Cultures Press, 2010) was recently launched in Ottawa. Claudia read a few examples of her poetry and we discussed the use of history and genealogical research in her poems. We also spoke about the upcoming (first) poetry festival in Ottawa and Claudia’s work with literary groups in Ottawa. “Heartbreaker” (Jenn Grant); “Dear Shark” (Luxury Pond). Listen to the entire show (plus the credits of the previous show) here (mp3): LL with Claudia Coutu Radmore

Oct 14, 2010
Interview with AJ Somerset, the winner of the Metcalf-Rooke award. We discussed his novel Combat Camera (published by Biblioasis), the original impetus for the book’s subject, war photography/photographers, the role of the photographer in conflict, the camera as shield, the relationship between war photography and pornography, his working practices, the editorial process, and the question of writing across gender. He will be reading as part of the Ottawa International Writers Festival on October 21, 2010. “Chancellor” (Gord Downie); “Look Up” (Stars). Listen to the entire show here (mp3): Untitled

Sept 16th, 2010
Interviewed John Lavery about his upcoming book Sandra Beck, with House of Anansi Press. (The soon-to-be-released novel was recently featured as the ‘opening line of the week’ in the National Post.) John read an excerpt from the novel then we discussed the intersections between first/third person, language, geography, music, alter egos, and the liturgical. John also briefly spoke to his experience working through the editorial process with Anansi. “Wrecking Ball” (Amelia Curran); “Acid Face Me, Cabin Cruiser You” (John Lavery). Entire show can be downloaded here (m4a): show with John Lavery

August 19th, 2010
Interview with Cameron Anstee, focusing on his recent MA thesis tracing the history and ethos of the first reading series in Canada, the Contact Poetry Reading Series in Toronto (50s-60s). We discussed the series, its creator Raymond Souster, the evolution of readings in Canada, the impact of the series (bringing modernist poets to Canada), and the curation of a reading series. Cameron also spoke about Apt. 9 press, including the forthcoming chapbooks by Peter Gibbons and William Hawkins.  “Big Red” (Frank Black); “Try a Little Tenderness” (Otis Redding). The show can be downloaded here (m4a): show with Cameron Anstee

August 5th, 2010
Interviewed Stuart Ross on his work with Mansfield Press, his new imprint (a Stuart Ross book), whether editorial work was also curatorial, the projects organised by the Meet the Presses collective, indie bookstores, and the Mansfield Revue.  Stuart also described books upcoming under the new imprint and Mansfield Press (including Leigh Nash, Natasha Nuhanovic, Marko Sijan, and Amy Lavender Harris). “Glory” (Liz Phair); “The World Isn’t Fair” (Randy Newman). Entire show was kindly recorded by Brian Pirie and can be downloaded here (mp3): show featuring Stuart Ross. An alternate file (m4a) of the same show can be found here: Stuart Ross show(2)

June 24th, 2010
Interviewed Amanda Earl on the spring edition of the ottawa small press fair and small press fair-isms in general (what is a small press fair? what are you looking forward to? advice for first-timers, etc.). Amanda described the newly released AngelHouse Press chapbooks by Pearl Pirie and rob mclennan. At the end of the show, I read “The Machinery” by Pat Lowther, part of a three-part prose poem in The Collected Works of Pat Lowther (2010). The Tree Reading Series asks local writers to introduce a ‘dead poet’ and I chose to introduce Pat Lowther at the A.F. Moritz reading earlier that week. Brief discussion of what I found engaging in her work. “Typical Girls” (The Slits); “Could Be So Happy” (Heartless Bastards). Interview only (rather than whole show) can be downloaded here (m4a):
interview with Amanda Earl.

May 27th, 2010
Notes from a poetry groupie: interviews w/ Sandra Ridley, Jennifer Londry and the Hagios Press team during a recent Western Canada book tour. Sandra Ridley’s book Fallout and Jennifer Londry’s After the Words were published by Hagios in spring 2010. I tagged along for their Winnipeg/Saskatoon readings, recording bits and pieces along the way. The interview with the Hagios publishers was conducted in a v. loud bar (please note this is “character”). The interview w/ Sandra and Jennifer includes a discussion on the state of Canadian poetry w/ Sandra’s brother Glenn. “Bad Reputation” (Joan Jett & the Blackhearts); “Folsom Prison Blues” (Johnny Cash). Interviews only (rather than whole show) can be downloaded here (m4a):
interview with Hagios Press ; interview with Sandra Ridley and Jennifer Londry.

April 29th, 2010
My show cancelled due to travel catastrophe. We blame the spheres.

April 1, 2010
Live interview with Paul Tyler about his first book, A Short History of Forgetting, which was recently published by Gaspereau Press. Paul read from his work and we had a discussion circling his experience with the process of making the book,  the natural world within an urban landscape and the problem of words. “Die Die Die” (The Avett Brothers); “Fool’s Gold” (Amelia Curran); “Hickory Wind” (Gillian Welch). Entire show including interview w/ Paul (some little audio glitches/gaps, mp3): Paul’s interview-April1-2010

March 11, 2010
Live interview with Pearl Pirie about her upcoming collection been shed bore to be published in the fall by Chaudiere Books. Pearl read her work and we discussed the poems in the upcoming collection, blogging, women & writing, haiku, sound and links/connections. “Well-Alright” (Spoon); “Let it Go” (Great Big Sea); “Here Comes the Sun” (Nina Simone). Brian Pirie kindly recorded the whole show/interview with Pearl, which can be downloaded here (mp3):
show featuring Pearl Pirie.

February 4, 2010
Interview with Spencer Gordon about the making of the Dinosaur Porn anthology (Ferno House & the Emergency Response Unit). Discussion of the book as object, small pressisms, collaboration, the nature of the chapbook vs. perfect-bound books and upcoming micropress projects. Interview recorded in a fairly loud coffee shop in Toronto (“character”). “I Don’t Wanna Grow Up” (The Ramones); “I’m a Real American” (Rick Derringer); “I Touch Myself” (The Divinyls, for v-day & to balance the Hulk Hogan theme). Interview only (rather than entire show) can be downloaded here (m4a):
interview with Spencer Gordon.

January 7, 2010
Live interview w/ Carmel Purkis on being a participant in sound poetry performances here in Ottawa and beyond. Discussion of sound poetry as play, the range of material, what it’s like to work in a group, and the recent group performance (w/ Sandra Ridley, Grant Wilkins, John Lavery and jwcurry) responding to Michelle Provost’s work at the Ottawa Art Gallery. “Fujiyama Mama” (Wanda Jackson); “Mind Contorted” (Major Matt Mason); “Float On” (Modest Mouse). No recording available. (Please contact me if you have one!)

December 10, 2009
Interview with Kate Hall and Johanna Skibsrud about the process of  publishing your first-book. Kate’ s book of poems, The Certainty Dream was published by Coach House Press and Johanna’s novel, The Sentimentalists, was published by Gaspereau Press.  I read very short excerpts from both books. “Look at Miss Ohio” (Gillian Welch); “Make Me a Pallet On the Floor” (John Hurt). Interview only (rather than the entire show) can be downloaded here (wav):
interview w/ Kate Hall and Johanna Skibsrud.

November 12, 2009
Live reading and discussion with Sandra Ridley on Amanda Earl (who was ill), Bywords and AngelHouse Press. We spoke about Amanda’s importance in the Ottawa literary community and took turns reading from her chapbook Ursula. Encouraged folks to send her mail. “Everyday I Write the Book” (Elvis Costello); “Live for Today” (Amanda Earl); “Little Bit of Red” (Serena Ryder); “Series of Dreams” (Bob Dylan). No recording available. (Please contact me if you have one!)

13 responses to “Literary Landscapes (CKCU)

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention Literary Landscapes (CKCU) « notes from a cartwheel --

  2. Pingback: Sounds from the Lit Landscape – pesbo

  3. Hi hunnybun (that’ll be Chris), love the site and all the shite therein. You bring out the poet in me, how do you do that?
    Love Ruth xxx

  4. Hi Christine,

    I wasn’t sure how to get in touch with you, so I hope a comment is ok. I’m an Ottawa-based artist and I’ll be launching my new graphic novel titled “Stargazer” at Ottawa’s Perfect Books on November 7th. I’m not sure if this is something you’d be interested in covering on Literary Landscapes, but I thought I’d ask.

    Thank you!

  5. Just drop a brief note detailing the book/event to my cartywheel address: I’ll take a look and also pass it along to my co-hosts. cheers!

  6. Excellent interview with John Lavery, Christine. I’m glad you asked the questions about Anansi!

  7. Pingback: Ottawa Small Press Book Fair – Fall Edition – 2010 « Apt. 9 Press

  8. Pingback: Leigh Nash, Literary Landscapes, and the Small Press Book Fair aftermath… « Apt. 9 Press

  9. Pingback: Tree: May 10 – pesbo

  10. Pingback: Notes: Profile, Interview, Book Fair « Apt. 9 Press

  11. Pingback: Make a Chapbook Workshop – pesbo

  12. Pingback: misc misc misc | notes from a cartwheel

  13. Pingback: Literary Landscape’s History – pesbo

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