Lat46 launches new anthology of Northern Ontario experiences
The Sudbury Star
Thursday March 22 2018
By Keith Dempsey
In an effort to commemorate Canada’s 150th anniversary, editors Karen McCauley and Laura Stradiotto wanted to capture Northern Ontario and its experiences.
At the same time, they wanted to take into account the controversies and criticism surrounding Canada’s 150th birthday.
In 150 Years Up North And More, they think they have done both.
“Some would say our past is shameful, how we treated our Indigenous population,” said Stradiotto, publisher and author relations at Latitude 46 Publishing. “With that in mind, we wanted to capture all experiences and we wanted to go beyond Confederation.”
McMcauley and Stradiotto put a call out last summer for writers to retrace the footsteps of our ancestors who came to this region.
That callout eventually led to 17 short stories that are being included in the anthology, 150 Years Up North And More, which focuses on the experiences of both immigrants and Indigenous people in the region from Sudbury to Thunder Bay.
The collection features a diverse group of contributors and includes some new voices from Northern Ontario’s literary landscape.
“I also wanted to include the experiences from the recent wave of refugees (entering) Canada,” Stradiotto said.
So, she met with and interviewed Hussein Qarqouz, who fled war in Syria with his family and is now opening a restaurant in Sudbury, which The Star reported on last week, ‘Accent: From refugee to businessman’ (go to http://www.thesudburystar.com/2018/03/17/sudbury-accent-from-refugee-to-businessman.)
“Two years ago, he couldn’t speak English, and come this week he’ll be a published writer,” Stradiotto said of Qarquouz
The official launch of 150 Years Up North and More coincides the same week as the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. It takes place at the McEwen School of Architecture on Saturday from 2 to 4 p.m.
Admission is free.
“We thought that launching the book around the same time would be significant in ways to open a dialogue about our identity as Canadians, as Northern Ontarians,” Stradiotto said.
“These stories really show or demonstrate that we’re all searching for the same thing. We’re searching for identity, we’re coming to terms with our own histories, our past, trying to understand where we came from so we can move forward.”
With cover art by Sarah King Gold, this collection features established and emerging new writers such as Julie-Anne Bolduc (Sudbury), Rod Carley (North Bay), Evelyn Clara Diebel (Nairn Centre), Franca Dominelli-Lisi (Sudbury), Susan Eldridge-Vautour (Sudbury), Kim Fahner (Sudbury), Julio Heleno Gomes (Thunder Bay) and Liisa Kovala (Sudbury).
Also contributing were Margo Little (Manitoulin Island), Caitlin Sylvia McAuliffe (Whitefish), Sarah McComb (Sault Ste. Marie), Rosanna Micelotta Battigelli (Sudbury), William R. Morin (Michipicoten First Nation), Darlene Naponse (Atikameksheng Anishnawbek), Shawna Diane Partridge (Sudbury), Hussein Qarqouz (Sudbury) and Lee Weimer (Manitoulin Island).