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Happy New Year 2014

January 7, 2014

BEST_2013

Holy moley guacamole! What a wicked busy, highly successful, reflective year 2013 has been. I’ve been so blessed it’s unreal. And as usual, here’s your writinginatree.com recap, the very berry best of 2013:

January we sold out. All of 3 Cities dun off! And to start the new year right, I went to Queens Park to hug some trees.

IMG_0092

Photography by Jael De Gale

This year’s Black History Month Series included reflections on being a black writer, performances from the Art Bar Black History Reading and the Peel Region Black Heritage Workshop I facilitated.

Me, enjoying being a facilitator

Me, enjoying being a facilitator

In March, my long time friend Black Coffee Poet and I embarked on a challenge to read a book a week. Needless to say, I checked off a lot of titles on my to do list. We also did our first group VLOG about community and competition in the arts, (watch the whole thing, the camera almost flies away)

This is what friendship looks like

This is what friendship looks like

Well most of y’all know, April was rammed with goodness for me; it was my birthday, I performed at Mood Indigo (the beginnings of Womyn of Indigo), I wrote two poems for National Poetry Month but ALSO, I went to BC for the first time to run poetry workshops. Aries power!

Loving that April!

Loving that April!

May, I launched my youtube channel (getting all fancy on ya) just in time for writinginatree.com’s 3 year blog-o-versary. PLUS there was the epic Womyn of Indigo show (you gotta check out the videos if you weren’t there).

WOI

Poster for Womyn of Indigo by Jael Designs

By June, Womyn of Indigo went hard as we performed our first festival at the RedPath Tall Ships at the Harbourfront. Also, I wrapped up my workshops at Jessie’s place, taking in all the great work the young women produced that session.

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Participants at Jessie’s place writing short stories about their sons

For the first time ever, I tried poetry busking, a practice I do with my typewriter which is basically me writing poems to the public for 2 bucks a pop. I also hosted the City of Toronto’s Live Green Festival (say what?) and I was honoured to sing (ok, lip sync) in Aria Zenua’s music video (coming soon).

A good Live Green host always wears green pants

A good Live Green host always wears green pants

In August, in honour of Emancipation Day, I wrote a non-fiction piece through a social platform called Say Hi. The writing continues as I penned a short fiction piece called Backyard Wolverine and an article about the Emerald Ash Borer, a little bug which have devastated ash trees in Toronto.

Photography by Whitney French

Photography by Whitney French

Womyn of Indigo hit the airwaves for the first time, writinginatree.com blog reached 100 followers, and my poetry busking crashed at the Toronto Word on the Street Festival, all in September.

Me busking at the Word on the Street Festival

Me, busking at the Word on the Street Festival

By October, the poetry busking was out of control! I was lugging my typewriter to the Toronto Queer Zine Fair, to Nuit Blanche, to Dufferin Grove, Wychwood Barns AND it launch into very own tumblr. PLUS, I was commissioned by Story Planet to run not one, but two super cool workshops: Zine Machine and the Ultimate Haiku Challenge.

roots_sampler

Zines sold at the Toronto Queer Zine Fair

As November rolled on I took the busking all the way to Montreal for Expozine, and was honoured to be on the CHRY FM airwaves promoting my poetry and art. My solo show Neo-Griot Diary showcased some of my newest works and I performed poetry for the first time with my guitar.

neo_griot_poster

Poster for Neo-Griot Diary

With a year filled with performances, writing, busking and festivals I needed REST! So I was monkin’ it for the first week of December, then galvanized myself into a video performance of a poem for December 6th and concluded things with an experimental interactive busking musical journey at the Regal Road Winter Open Mic.

my_typewriter

A close up of my beautiful typewriter

On the Horizon for 2014

  • From the Root, a new zine project was awarded a grant (woot!) and the final call out concluded today so watch out for the final product coming in 2014
  • Launching my very own radio show, podcasting to the masses through Read2Rap Radio
  • My sci-fi epic poem Story of O (which was revealed at Neo-Griot Diary) to seep out stanza by stanza
  • Womyn of Indigo: burning stages, kicking ass and taking names!
  • Continuous workshops (collaborating with Story Planet again for sure)
  • Plate of Food finally! (finally)
  • More climbing trees, like physically climbing those bad boys

Over and out! Wishing the greatest level of success to you and your dreams! Looking back when I first started this blog, coming from a place of uncertainty and confusion, it’s a blessing to reflect on a full and healthy year. Let’s launch into 2014 together dear readers!

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