Welcome! I love to write, and I love sharing what I write with my readers. I vary my style as much as I can-posting events, creative non-fiction, prose and poetry and the occasional video. Enjoy!



Friday, March 27, 2015

Event Posting- Thursday April 2, 2015 @ 12 noon Ministry of Attorney General

Cindy Gladue was an Indigenous mother and 36 years old when she was murdered in an Edmonton motel room 4 years ago. Last week an all white and almost all male jury decided to acquit her killer, a white Ontario man, because they believed that Cindy had consented to the violence that left an 11 cm wound in her vagina causing her to bleed to death.
Cindy's death is a reminder that Indigenous women' lives and sex workers' lives are not valued in this deeply racist, sexist and misogynist society.

We support the calls for an appeal and other forms of justice!

Join us to express our outrage!

Endorsed by No More Silence STRUT, Maggies TO Families of Sisters in Spirit South Western Ontario Sex Workers

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Book Review- The Back of the Turtle By Thomas King

Review: The Back of the Turtle
Written By: Thomas King
Reviewed By: Christine Smith (McFarlane)

The Back of the Turtle is Thomas King’s first novel in 15 years and as usual he does not disappoint. He draws upon Native and Christian mythology in his book and his play of words is interesting and intriguing.

The plot of King’s novel moves back and forth in time, and is told through five points of view, and though sometimes it can be a bit difficult to follow, overall the story is an interesting one- one that draws upon not so much about creation but about betrayal, disaster, salvation and the resilience of life.

Gabriel Quinn is a scientist who works for a company called Domidion-a company that deals with various environmental developments and disasters. Just think of Monsanto or Exxon. Quinn feeling tortured by what the company does abandons his laboratory to return to Smoke River Reserve, where his mother and sister lived. He finds upon his return that almost everyone in the community has disappeared. They and the natural wildlife surrounding the reserve have been poisoned by an environmental disaster known as the Ruin.

Quinn is a tortured soul and wants to commit suicide. We learn the reason why he wants to end his life and it’s because he is responsible for the environmental disaster that hit his reserve, and he is there to witness the destruction he created and walk into the sea and die.

Upon his arrival at Samaritan Bay (the beach and waters where he attempts to take his life), Quinn finds the only signs of life are a stray dog named Soldier, an Indigenous artist Mara, a kid named Sonny who runs a dilapidated motel with an absentee father and an old man named Nicholas Crisp.

Quinn strikes up an unlikely relationship with Soldier and Mara and you learn to favor Quinn and Mara more than you would Dorian Asher, the CEO of Domidion, who is the villain in The Back of the Turtle. Asher is the type of person who becomes wealthy presiding over Domidion, the Ruin and other disasters, and he treats everything personal and corporate like they are deals with certain levels of priority to them. Oil spills, no big deal, tar sands disasters, who cares etc.

Mara and Gabriel are the characters I learned to like because they are more human and feel things on a deeper level than Dorian Asher. When you witness the interplay between Mara and Gabriel, you find yourself caught up in wondering where their relationship is going to go and what’s going to happen to them, especially when Gabriel has his off and on again wish to die.

King tells the story in The Back of the Turtle in his usual witty and mischievous way, just like in his books The Truth About Stories, A Short History of Indians in Canada and other works. King is one of those authors you want to read no matter what.

The Back of the Turtle is the winner of the 2014 Governor General’s Award and is published by Harper Collins Publishers Ltd. It is 518 pages.

ISBN: 978-1-44343-162-0

Event- Toronto Council Fire Bake Sale March 13, 2015

Some of Toronto Council Fire's  Residential School Survivors will be having a bake sale this Friday the 13th! All funds raised will be supporting their trip to the Gathering of Nations Pow Wow in Albuquerque, New Mexico!

Come grab a treat and support this group!

Monday, March 9, 2015

News Flash: 1st Aboriginal Writer in Residence at North York Central Library- Award Winning Metis Author Cherie Dimaline!!

 Photo By: Christine Smith (McFarlane)

Award Winning Metis Author Inaugural Writer in Residence:
By: Christine Smith (McFarlane)

The Toronto Public Library has made huge strides in celebrating Aboriginal writers  by appointing their 1st inaugural Aboriginal writer in residence at North York Central Library.

In the first appointment as a writer in residence, at the Toronto Public Library , awarding winning Metis author Cherie Dimaline says "It’s such a great opportunity to be the inaugural writer for the Aboriginal literature residency. I really see it as a tremendous beginning for a partnership between the Aboriginal literary community and the busiest library system in the world."

Cherie Dimaline is Metis from the Georgian Bay area. Since 2007, she has written prolifically, with three books under her belt and another collection of short stories called “A Gentle Habit” being released in the fall of 2015. She is the founding editor of FNH Magazine and Muskrat Magazine and is a rising star in the Aboriginal literary field. Cherie’s second book, “The Girl Who Grew A Galaxy,” was recently shortlisted for the 2014 Burt Award. and was named the 2014 Emerging Artist of the Year, the Ontario Premier ‘s Awards for Excellence in the Arts.

Her appointment as writer in residence runs from March 2015 until June 2015 and will involve the reading of manuscripts, one on one appointments with emerging writers, discussions and workshops.

Deborah Richardson, the province’s first Indigenous female Deputy Minister who was at the event said “Media often portrays First Nations, Inuit and Metis people in a negative light and it’s really important to celebrate the successes of our people, and that is one of the reasons why it is really exciting to see Cherie’s appointment or residency here at the library. ”

Dimaline is excited about her appointment and said "We are the people of story and the library, in this context, is the keeper of stories for the wider population. I think its a tremendous gift to the people of Toronto for the library to dedicate a residency program where Lee Maracle, Susan Blight, Giles Benaway and other incredible storytellers are involved. It opens up the beauty and expertise of Indigenous story to a whole multicultural city."

Friday, March 6, 2015

Event Posting: Anishinaabewin 6: Pakwis Baa-Niimi- Friday March 13, 2015 to Saturday March 14, 2013

The sixth annual Anishinaabewin culture conference, celebrating all things Anishinaabe. Presented by the Ojibwe Cultural Foundation. Open to all!

Friday, March 13 to Saturday, March 14, 2015.
Holiday Inn on Regent St, Sudbury

March is the crusted snow time, Naabdin Giizis, when Nenbosh’s brother Pakwis momentarily dances around us in little swirling gusts of snow. Anishinaabe say, “Pakwis baa-niimi,” Pakwis is dancing. He is teasing us, watching and waiting to catch an easy meal. Pakwis is the jester, the storyteller, the outcast, observer of nature, and patron of the arts. This year we gather at Anishinaabewin to honor all of these traditions.

Registration: $250 both days, $135 single day
Students and Elders: $140 both days, $75 single day

Contact us:
Ojibwe Cultural Foundation
P.O. Box 278, 15 Hwy 551
M’Chigeeng, ON, P0P 1G0
Phone (705) 377-4902; Fax (705) 377-5460

Registration form:

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

First Nations Program Profile of the Month- First Nation Communities READS

First Nations Communities READ is an annual reading program that was launched in 2003 by the First Nations public library community in Ontario.

What does First Nations Communities READ do?:

  • encourages family literacy, intergenerational storytelling, and intergenerational information sharing
  • are written and/or illustrated by, or otherwise involve the participation of a First Nations, Metis or Inuit creator;
  • contain First Nation, Metis, or Inuit content produced with the support of First Nation, Metis, or Inuit advisers/consultants or First Nation, Metis or Inuit endorsement.
What are the program's goals?

Through title selections, other recommendations, and creators tours in First Nation communities, First Nation Communities READ:

  • encourages family literacy, intergenerational storytelling, and intergenerational information sharing;
  • increases awareness of the relevance and importance of First Nations, Metis and Inuit writing, illustration and publishing
  • promotes the publication, sharing, and understanding of First Nation, Metis, and Inuit voices and experiences;
  • increases awareness and sales of the titles it honours 
Who's involved in the program?

First Nation Communities READ relies on:

  • annual funding from the Government of Canada
  • coordination support from Southern Ontario Library Service
  • responsiveness of publishers to the annual call for title nominations
  • a volunteer jury of First Nation libraries
  • a volunteer jury of First Nation librarians
  • in kind support from organizations, including the Ontario Library Association,, and Quill & Quire;
  • the participation of public libraries and broader public
What is the annual funding used for?

First Nation Communities READ funding supports:
  • the purchase and distribution of copies of the selected title to First Nation public libraries in Ontario;
  • the design, printing, and distribution, to all public libraries in Ontario, of a poster promoting the selected titled and other worthy nominations
  • the printing of First Nations Communities READ book stickers;
  • readings, book giveaways, and signings at conferences and events
How does the annual call for nominations work?
  • First Nations Communities READ publishes and sends out an annual call to publishers for title nominations.
For more information regarding this amazing program please contact the First Nations Community READS interim Coordinator and Director of Operations at Southern Ontario Library Service, (SOLS) or visit their website at

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Event Posting- Saturday Night Secret Showcase Saturday March 14, 2015 @ the Central

Saturday Night Secret Showcase
Saturday, March 14, 2015
The Central - 603 Markham St
(Bloor & Bathurst)
9:30pm $6

10:00 Midnight Lemonade
10:30 miKEYS
11:00 The Ollivanders
11:45 The Johnnys
12:30 Akeem Raphael
1:00 Mac Mahew