This excerpt from "A Long Journey to Mercy: Joy Kogawa’s Gently to Nagasaki," by Irene Sywenky, was originally published in Confluences 2: Essays on the New Canadian Literature, edited by Nurjehan Aziz. It appears on Salon .ll. by kind permission of Mawenzi House. Joy Kogawa's most recent work, Gently to Nagasaki (2016), is a memoir that connects with many of the themes she has developed in her earlier books on Japanese-Canadians.
The Sugar Sammy of Literature, by Linda Leith29 March 2012
In a press interview earlier this month with journalist Joseph Elfassi on my publishing house and on Blue Metropolis, I referred to the festival as the Sugar Sammy of literature.
Sugar Sammy is a Montreal comedian who has been making a splash with his show You're gonna rire, in which he mixes French and English and a couple of other languages, as well, evidently to great effect.
Well, the Blue Metropolis Montreal International Literary Festival and its writers have been doing something along those lines for 14 years now, and the comparison grabbed the editor's attention so that it appears in the headline as Blue Metropolis Literary Festival the Sugar Sammy of Literature -- and not only in English but also in the French.
The 14th Festival takes place this year at the Hôtel OPUS on Sherbrooke at St. Laurent, and that's where I'll be launching the first books published by LLP as well as this online magazine, Salon .ll., in English and in French. This is the first Blue Met I have had no part in organizing, and I'm just happy there is such a great context for me to stage a literary event in both languages.
You can find details of the festival programme on the Blue Metropolis website here.
© Linda Leith 2012