November 16, 2016: The Art of Editing Poetry: A Conversation with Shazia Hafiz Ramji Reply

What: Editors BC monthly meeting
When: Wednesday, November 16, 2016, 7:00 pm (program begins at 7:30 pm)
Where: Welch Room, 4th floor, YWCA Health + Fitness Centre, 535 Hornby Street, Vancouver | map
Cost: Free for Editors Canada members, $10 for non-members, and $5 for students with valid ID. Registration at the door.

All editors must consider the needs of the writer, the reader, and the publisher or client when working on material, but this can be a particularly delicate balancing act for the poetry editor. What is considered? How does the editor navigate issues of poetic licence or the idiosyncratic use of writing mechanics? What are the desirable characteristics of a poetry editor, and what is happening in this publishing sector? Join us for a stimulating conversation about these and other topics as Talonbooks poetry editor and poet Shazia Hafiz Ramji speaks to moderator Lana Okerlund.

Shazia Hafiz Ramji is the poetry editor at Talonbooks and an interviews editor at Canadian Women in the Literary Arts, and she co-edited the “Intersections” issue of Poetry Is Dead magazine. Her poetry has been nominated for the 2016 National Magazine Awards and is forthcoming in The Capilano Review and the “Augmented Reality” special issue of Letters to the Editors. Shazia’s chapbook of poetry will be published by Anstruther Press in 2017, and her first book of poems will be out with Talonbooks in 2018.

Meet the instructor: Jessica Somers Reply

By Erin Parker

On Saturday, November 26, Editors BC will present local accountant Jessica Somers and her full-day workshop Tax and Finance for Freelancers. Jessica’s workshop will help to demystify the basic tax and finance issues facing freelancers, including GST/HST registration, bookkeeping and record retention, and building financial stability without a salary.

Erin Parker, co-chair of Editors BC’s professional development committee, recently spoke to Jessica about her advice for editors who are just embarking upon the freelancing life and her unique perspective on a topic that many of us find intimidating.


Remembering editor Ellen Seligman at the Vancouver Writers Fest 2016 Reply

Written by Nancy Tinari; copy edited by Maggie Clark

The Vancouver Writers FestOn the evening of October 18, 2016, three of Canada’s top writers spoke at the Vancouver Writers Fest to give a moving depiction of the late Ellen Seligman. Seligman, an editor with McClelland & Stewart for almost four decades, was esteemed for her work with many of Canada’s best-known writers, including Margaret Atwood, Michael Ondaatje, and Jane Urquhart.

The panel discussion was moderated by Jared Bland; the writers taking part were Michael Helm, Steven Price, and Madeleine Thien. Seligman edited Helm’s and Price’s most recently published books (After James and By Gaslight, respectively) during the final year of her life, and she had previously edited Thien’s book Dogs at the Perimeter. These writers’ anecdotes about Seligman revealed an editor who, even in the face of mortal illness, remained unparalleled in her insights, devotion to her writers, and dedication to her work.



Join the Editors BC executive team! Reply

We’re looking for an Editors BC member to take on the role of programs chair. The programs chair plans and hosts Editors BC’s general meetings (eight per year, from September to November and from January to May), with support from other executive members. Volunteering is a rewarding experience and a great way to get involved with Editors BC!

Here’s what past programs chair Frances Peck had to say about her experience in this role:

It’s an excellent low-pressure way to meet authors, publishing people, and other language professionals, especially valuable for anyone who doesn’t network easily. I also really liked having a direct say in the topics presented each month. Thinking up new and interesting subjects and presenters was a creative exercise that I truly enjoyed.

And here are a few comments from Iva Cheung, who served on the programs committee:

We made things easy for ourselves early on by creating templates for introductory and follow-up emails to speakers, meeting agendas, consent forms, and the like. We put in place a lot of this kind of infrastructure that we hoped would make the job easier for our successors.

The committee met over coffee at the end of each summer to brainstorm possible topics and speakers, and we never had a problem coming up with ideas—the Lower Mainland is brimming with talent and people doing and discovering interesting things.

If you think this volunteer opportunity might be right for you, please contact branch chair Marianne Grier at

PubPro 2016: Event recap and session summaries (part 5) Reply

PubPro2016_scheduleIntroduction by Iva Cheung, PubPro facilitator

The fourth annual PubPro unconference for managing editors and publication production professionals welcomed participants from across Canada and the U.S., as it was, for the first time, offered as a workshop immediately before the Editors Canada national conference. Although not as many attendees came prepared with talks, all participants came prepared to talk, many of them stepping up to lead discussions on different aspects of publication project management. PubPro volunteers Connie Behl, Ellen Michelle Koehler, and Yvonne Robertson took notes and have summarized the sessions. More…