Top 10 Canadian Writing Awards - No. 8

Award for Other Attendees at Book Launch

Canadian book launches can be pretty lame, gauche and pointless affairs.   Some authors and publishers spend more money than can be justified by potential book sales – which is true even when they go cheap.  Anything that mixes alcohol, socializing with strangers, exchanges of money, requests for email addresses, finger food, and the act of putting your finger up your butt should be suspect no matter what the purpose.
Consequently, given the absence of any real budget for book promotion, I have to consider myself fortunate to have had pretty neat experiences in the book launch domain.  As always, it is best when the book and the author are secondary appendages to events that actually have an element of worth or offer some enjoyment to the attendees.  One of my books was even launched without me there under the stardust of a much broader and significant national conference; another was integrated into a vintage aircraft show; and one was staged in conjunction with the unveiling of a repatriated historic museum artifact.  One book launch was in a bar in Madrid; and another wrapped itself around a peculiar birthday party.
But I think the best was the one linked to a centennial celebration and staged in a fire hall in Northern Ontario.  The book was Stubborn: Big Ed Caswell and the Line from the Valley to the Northland, which tells the story of the first full-time Fire Chief in Cochrane, Ontario - a town that was ravaged by fire four times and built and rebuilt five times in its first six years of existence.
It was launched to coincide with the town’s centennial in 2010, and the Cochrane Fire Brigade accommodated it with an event in the fire hall.  As plans took root, it soon became clear that the book launch was benefiting appreciably from its association with the firefighters and was attracting interest because it gave people occasion to honour the men and women of the Brigade.
It was a great day for everyone. 
The local MP and Town Council attended, presented commemorative awards to the Firefighters from the town, the federal government, and other awards including framed letters the Premier of Ontario and the Prime Minister of Canada.
I am sure that many of those celebrating the “book launch” were unaware that there was a book being launched.  But that suited me with my Canadian-writer-recognition aversion just fine.

Check out Satire of Machivelli's The Prince
 IL Principio - The Principle
by Piccolò Mochiavelli
©Stubbornbooks 2012