Micheline Maylor poet professor and editor

How long have you been working on editing Quartet the four poetry books from Frontenac House?

We started working last September so we worked from September to I’d say March for the editing process. During that time we also get involved with the process of creating the book itself — the cover art the design of the thing the look of the thing.

One of the books is yours correct?

Mine’s not in the Quartet mine came out before the Quartet. It was kind of a one-off.

You also work at Mount Royal University. You specialize in 20th century and beyond Canadian literature?

Yes I felt that it was a little bit limiting to say 20th century and 2013. You know did I just stop learning — 2000 okay we’re done? It’s contemporary Canadian poetry so anything that’s happening in the present — who’s emerging in terms of poetics what’s happening in terms of publishing that kind of thing.

How long have you been at Mount Royal?

Eight years.

I’m hoping your program survived okay with the cuts.

I’m in the English department so everybody needs an English course to graduate so…. We emerged fairly unscathed.

You’re also the editor of Freefall?

Yes Freefall literary mag.

What does that involve?

It involves everything from taking out the garbage to fielding submissions to advertising hosting editing contracts. Everything you can possibly imagine falls under my responsibility.

Can you describe Freefall?

It’s a literary magazine that comes out of Calgary and we publish poetry fiction non-fiction reviews interviews — anything that has any interest with writers or the writing community especially in Calgary Alberta and Canada. I said that in order because anything that happens in Calgary we’re first and foremost concerned with and then Alberta is our secondary concern and of course Canada is a major focus. We have a 90 per cent commitment to Canadian content. We maintain a very close involvement with the writing community nationally and locally.

Are you surprised by the quality of work that exists here?

Absolutely not. I think Calgary is just booming with talent right now. I think that the seeds of this Calgary literary community probably started in the ’70s and ’80s with some really hard work by some people that have been around for a long time and now we’re really reaping the benefit of that. There’s fantastic stuff going on in terms of new people coming out with really really good stuff. I could name Juleta Severson Baker in terms of the Quartet. I think that she’s going to be a force to be reckoned with in the Calgary literary community. I could name Paul Zits from the University of Calgary his work is phenomenal. There are many talents emerging out of Calgary. It’s not surprising at all. I expect to see more. There’s so much discourse and talent and opportunity.

Can you tell me about the event at Melrose? That’s a unique venue for a poetry launch. What’s happening for the Quartet launch?

I think that Frontenac has the opinion that poetry shouldn’t be exclusionary so sure poetry and beer have always gone well together. So we’re having the Quartet launch at Melrose Cafe & Bar on September 9 from 7 to 9 p.m. and what that’s going to entail is a very brief introduction from [Frontenac House publisher] David Scollard giving his thanks to all. Then he’s going to introduce me and I’m going to read for a couple of minutes at the very most and then I’m going to host the event and showcase the wonderful things that are coming out of Frontenac for 2013 and the four authors from the Quartet. They’ll be reading from their work — they could even field questions on creativity or the writing process itself.

Learn more at frontenachouse.com.