Faded white roses laying on loose pages from books

In nature, nothing is perfect and everything is perfect

Notes from the September Literati Meeting

We met to talk about ‘Nature’ as a theme in the glittering world of literature in a quiet corner of a sprawling urban garden. Against a leafy backdrop, our discussion flowed from science fiction with generations of environmental evolution to pastoral admirations of rural life and on to the natural (and inevitable) state of death. We inevitable brought up pandemic-related words and touched on the otherworldliness of the natural world.

Continue reading
Woman wearing a pink t-shirt with white printed text: Du respect, du temps, de l'argent

Not-so-radical notions

Notes from the March Literati Meeting

This Zoom call didn’t get off to a particularly light-hearted start. The impact of COVID (both on the fight for equality and my own mental state), breaking news about a murderous man in Atlanta ‘having a really bad day,’ ongoing reports of abuse, hashtag NotAllMen still being a thing, and all the other horrors of the world had me in a pessimistic state of mind. Then, Margaret Atwood (a perennial favourite) came up… and my mood started to pick up.

By the end of our chat about ‘Feminism’ in the glittering world of literature, my optimism had returned. Laughing together and sharing some wonderful resources (listed below) definitely helped—and the ‘Beautiful Queens’ of the Grammys didn’t hurt either.

Continue reading

Looking on the bright side

Notes from the January Literati meeting

Our January discussion about optimism throughout the glittering world of words was speckled with memoirs of hope in the shadows, expectations being exceeded, the poetry of promise, and some practical advice on making things better. 

There’s a full list of the pieces of work we shared with each other below… along with a quote to kick us off and a bonus list of authors we love! 

Continue reading
Person walking along a railroad with blue sky behing

Walking the line

Notes from the December Literati meeting

During our last meeting of 2020, we found quick consensus that balance is not one-size fits all—and the materials we discussed show this range. The lists below spans scientific research and a guide for homemakers, to excellent storytelling and some much-needed feel-good watching. 

If you’re interested in getting together to talk about all things wordy in 2021, please answer our short survey to help plan the next meetings of The Literati.

Continue reading
Stylized hands painted with vivid color-blocking

An ‘unguarded’ conversation

Notes from the October Literati meeting

The backdrop of COVID-19 brought a different perspective to our discussion about all things wordy on the theme of vulnerability. We delved into this broad topic from many angles—from sex and relationships to the survival of an entire species and the unprotectedness of immigrants, even touching on the far-too-relevant topic of ‘sheltering the vulnerable’—and came up with a great list of things to read and watch. 

There are strong characters who have very human vulnerabilities, behind-the-curtain observations about domestic life and inner thoughts, larger questions of flight or fight, and a few topical recommendations.

Continue reading
A ceramic turquoise mug sits next to a computer showing a virtual conference on the screen

Virtual word nerds

Literary events go online

A definite pandemic perk has been all kinds of normally not-so-accessible events going virtual. From yoga classes and drag shows to author readings and pub quizzes, I’ve really enjoyed being able to participate in things that would otherwise be too far away, too pricey, or simply too inconvenient.

And sharing the experience with geographically-distant friends and family is flat out fantastic!

Here are a few recommendations for wordy events on the internet, including the next Literati meeting in a couple weeks time.

Continue reading