Google alerts, 2

As I’ve mentioned before, my agent occasionally sends me Google alerts of what I and other Ian Williamses are up to.

Google Alerts
Ian Williams Daily update ⋅ March 15, 2019
NEWS
Ian Williams thrives on stylistic daring in debut novel Reproduction Straight.com Reproduction, the debut novel by acclaimed poet Ian Williams, looks at how love, ambition, and sorrow recur in the families we both inherit and …Flag as irrelevant
Man arrested for allegedly hitting a child with a leather belt WKRG News 5 The boy told her he was punished by 30-year-old Ian Williams for his actions at school. The arrest report states the alleged abuse happened on …Flag as irrelevant

$165 000 US or $218 790 CAD

David Chariandy won the Windham-Campbell prize for Brother.

He’s won, or been close to winning, a lot of prizes. Definitely, the book has made him over a quarter million dollars in prize money alone. For part of an afternoon, a few of my writer friends and I fantasized about what we’d do with the money.

I had just come back from playing tennis so I was thinking I might spend more of my time doing that. In the short term, I might get a new racket (I dislike that spelling but, alas, I’m giving in). That would leave $218 600 to spend on tennis balls.

A colleague at the Peter Wall Institute, younger than me, said she sometimes takes a day off and pretends that she’s retired. She informed me that one needs 1.3 million dollars to retire comfortably off the interest.

Anyway, Twitter showered David with love, although he’s not on it.

Reading Zadie Smith’s Feel Free

Here are some highlights from Feel Free, via my Twitter self.

The book trailer for Reproduction

Have you seen this yet? I strut in slow motion down Queen West in Toronto. I look pretty tough. I appear to be thinking, I run these streets out here, y’all.

Then I write some poetry into a yellow notebook.

My favourite sentence is the last one, starting at 1:16, where I lean in and get all serious. That’s about as intense as I get, believe it or not.

Marlon James

Just typing his name into the subject line makes me feel like I’m reporting for a gossip site.

Just typing his name into the subject line makes me feel like I’m reporting for a gossip site.

In the last few weeks, I’ve read more about him than I have about myself. His book, Black Leopard, Red Wolf, is exploding. Reviews, profiles, interviews everywhere. There’s not enough gossip circulating but maybe that’ll come. His novel is enjoying a warm reception. Insert here the emoji of the party favour exploding.

I interviewed him last night when he swooped into town for a Vancouver Writers Fest event. He’s in San Francisco by now.

Sorry. Speaking of gossip, the one time I was getting close to something juicy about him, we were standing backstage and he made a joke about something-which-will-remain-off-record, then Leslie Hurtig, the Vancouver Writers Fest director, called my name and I had to step on stage. I never got a chance to circle back.

Circling back, Marlon James has been on my mind for weeks. He’s as smart and funny and electric and irreverent as you’d expect. He probably makes his friends sputter laughter in public when he texts them. He has a confidence that makes you trust his artistic decisions. He has a reason for every choice he makes. There’s no accident in Black Leopard, Red Wolf. The man researched the book for years.

Taller than I predicted. Maybe 6’1. He was wearing layers of black–pants with a white side-stripe, a knee-length tunic over that (he called it a dress), and a shirt over that. And a medallion. Black boots. His dreads were tied back. I suspect the whole look was on trend, like from NY fashion week, and not simply goth, as the untrained eye would label it.


I’ll try to find some more pics. Here’s one of us just chillin’ on the porch.