July 13, 2017
An Eclectic and Fun Collection
An Amazon Book Review
We just discovered this awesome book review of Impromptu on Amazon dated June 29, 2017.
July 13, 2017
Britbear Writes an Amazing Book Review of Impromtpu
"IMPROMPTU is hive mentality at it's best!" -- Britbear
We are so excited to read Bribrear's Book Review of Impromptu: An Anthology, which calls it "hive mentality at it's best!" While Impromptu is our groups second anthology, this book review is actually our first! Breatbear gives special shoutouts to:
- "In Defence of Eden" by Margaret Abela, for the sheer poetry of her prose
- "Kitshcy Art" by Brenda Dow, for creating the character of Constable-slash-artist Kitchener.
- "Spiders from Mars" by Larry Kosowan is an interesting take on the sci-fi, alien genre.
- "A Chance Meeting" by Betty Stewart is a sort of "meet cute" love story that takes place in large part in Toronto's transit system.
Thanks for the wonderful review, Britbear! We've included a screenshot of the full review below, so it is forever importalized on our blog. A bigger, more legible version can be found at Bribrear's Book Reviews.
June 27, 2017
Celebrate Canada 150
with the Scarborough Scribblers
On Monday, June 26th, 2017, the Scarborough Scribblers celebrated Canada 150 with Canadian scacks (did you know that you can't get Ketchup Chips or Coffee Crisp in the states) and a teaspoon of maple syrup tastes amazing in coffee?) and Canadian themed promopts.
Several fellow authors stopped by for a visit, including Raanan Mintz (pictured on the far left) and Madeleine Callway whom you may know as M. H. Callway or one of the Mesdames of Mayhem. It was great to see Madeleine again and she kindly acted as our photographer. Thanks for the wonderful picture, Madeleine!
April 22, 2017
Book Printing at Asquith Press
On April 22nd we visited Asquith Press, located at the Toronto Reference Library. If you don't get out to Yonge and Bloor much, or even if you do, you might not realize that the library is actually located on Asquith Ave.
We met with our book printer/tour guide, Tony bright and early on the Saturday and got to watch our book print.
May 09, 2017
Introducing Our New Website
If you've visited gravelbar.ca in the past, you've probably noticed that some things have changed. Aside from the new design (and our new logo), we've added some new content. Visit our books page to read about our two published anthologies, Impromptu and Library Reflections and to find out where you can get your free copy.
If you'd like to meet the Scribblers in person, the events page will tell you where to find us.
Over the next few months, we'll be adding individual pages for each of the Scarborough Scribblers. You'll be able to visit them to learn more about the authors and read their work.
July 14, 2016
Marketing and Self-Promotion for Writers
Recently I experienced a little of the non-writing aspect of writing which is known as promotional work. Part of every aspiring writer’s schedule may be taken up with book signings, readings, blogging, updating social media and web pages, perhaps presenting seminars and tutorials, but these things are not what a writer likes best. A writer enjoys writing. So while it's interesting to learn these aspects of 'being creative,' it may not seem like fun to everyone. Writers who do not enjoy talking and writing about their craft or greeting strangers should probably just stick to reading new work to fellow writer friends at the library, coffee shop, or pub.
For those who prefer writing and mailing away manuscripts to prospective publishers, remember that they will probably ask you to help promote your own book, hence signing, smiling, and shaking hands. For those who want to maximize their time at the keyboard, however, there are other ways to get exposure for their work so readers can appreciate their wit and imagination. All that is required is an envelope with a postage stamp or an upload button on a computer.
Free contests may require new, unpublished work only, (that which hasn't been submitted elsewhere.) If you read the fine print you should be able to make sure you still own the rights to your work. Free websites may also permit you to present your work online, (but you may not be allowed to submit it for publication in two venues simultaneously.) Whether or not you choose to increase your exposure to the readers of the world, remember that if you want to improve your writing, the best way is to write. Any other activity related to writing can take away valuable time and your pure enjoyment of writing.
May 27, 2016
Writing Seminar with David Bester
It was a Thursday afternoon in the Spring of 2016 when I visited a writing group at the Kennedy and Eglinton Library to attend a seminar with writing guru David Bester. There were 15 people there who all seemed over the age of 50. I realized this meant that combined, there were over seven hundred years of life experience in that room from all around the world. It seemed like a special opportunity.
David Bester spoke about the method he uses in his workshops, summarized on his website; "Discover your unique voice, and banish the fear..." He encourages a safe and friendly learning environment. It's based on something called the Amherst Writers and Artists method.
When each of us read aloud our own writing exercise, he suggested that others could comment about, 'what I remembered most about the piece was….' This resulted in a friendly response to the work. I was then ready to participate in the next section without feeling any apprehension about my own writing.
So next we learned from David about 'Character and Plot Arcs'. I found it helpful to learn how the characters in my own story could influence its outcome. After some more writing exercises I felt like a new chapter had been started in my own writing adventures.
As an added benefit to my friends at Albert Campbell Library, 'The Scarborough Scribblers,' I have also begun to think about creating a friendly and unthreatening atmosphere for sharing with others in the group. No more Mr. Brutality with a coloured marker pen.
Note: The seminar, entitled "Creative Writing Workshop" ran on Thu May 26, 2016 from 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
May 22, 2016
Library Reflections: An Anthology (2016) is a collaborative work, consisting of short stories written by ten Scarborough Scribblers. Our stories are set in libraries of all shapes and sizes. We hope that you’ll visit a few and say hello by leaving a review.
You can get a free eBook online. If you’d like a print copy of library reflections, contact us. We’ll even autograph it for you if you like.
May 22, 2016
Welcome to the Gravel Bar
I’m very excited to welcome you to gravelbar.ca, home of the Scarborough Scribblers.
Last week, we didn’t have a website. Last month, we didn’t have an anthology. Last year, we didn’t even have the Scarborough Scribblers. In just one short year, we went from a group of strangers sitting quietly around a table to a tightly knit writers group. We got to know each other, became friends. We shared our writing, critiqued each other’s work. In the process, we grew as writers and collaborated on an anthology.
We’ve come a long way in the past year, and today I welcome you to gravelbar.ca..