Burgomasterpiece Theatre

Presenting our new comics column, “Burgomasterpiece Theatre”, by Patrick Burgomaster!

COLUMNS_New Comics Column_Burgomasterpiece Theatre


Zine Review: Danger Unheard

Zine, Kerri Radley, Research & Destroy,, $2

Hearing ability is one spectrum where zines can act in particularly tactical ways. Kerri Radley, who also makes Deafula (detailing her experiences as a deaf person) takes up that strategic advantage. In Danger Unheard, a one-off zine, Radley discusses a few tactics for the loathsome and sometimes deadly task of dealing with police. But as the zine’s text becomes increasingly punctuated by news clippings and anecdotes of atrocious
police misconduct, violence, and discrimination — “Shot 6 Times —Didn’t Hear Officer”— it takes a dire turn towards a cruel reality. Indeed, the short text concludes that police training, advocacy, awareness campaigns, and other actions deaf people and allies might attempt ultimately don’t matter. The zine’s tiny size and bright pink cover manage to pack a strong punk aesthetic. Radley employs collage and found text to create a fugal creation bouncing between her own thoughts on police and the raw news clippings that serve to ground them. Danger Unheard achieves what many zines attempt — it’s practical, political and pocketsize. (Jonathan Valelly)

Calls for Submissions

Call for Submissions: Indie Writers’ Deathmatch 7!

Submissions to Broken Pencil’s annual fierce story competition are now open. This year it’s an all-genre battle, open to fiction, non-fiction, poetry and comics entries (up to 2,000 words.) Winners receive the Indie Writer’s Makeover, which includes a consultation with literary agent Sam Hiyate, a meeting with Globe & Mail culture columnist and novelist Russell Smith, and a meeting with one of Canada’s leading small-press publishers, BookThug!

Plus $200 cash and publication in the Spring 2015 edition of Broken PencilDEADLINE: DECEMBER 21, 2014 at 11:59pm. To enter and read complete rules, go here.

Call for Applicants: Digital Narratives Residency, Banff Centre

The Banff Centre’s Digital Narratives residency is perfect for writers wishing to use interactive technologies and associated digital concepts to explore, push the boundaries of, and create new forms of innovative narrative across multiple platforms. Develop your own narrative-driven project under the creative supervision of Eli Horowitz and Russell Quinn, the co-creators of The Silent History, described by the New York Times as “one of the most talked about new experiments [in publishing].” This unique three-week residency is open to writers of all literary genres, including fiction, non-fiction, screenwriters, documentary makers, animators and graphic novelists working within the digital landscape. The application deadline is December 10. For more information and to apply, please visit the program’s website.

Call for Submissions: It Was Written, Poetry Inspired by Hip-Hop

Jason McCall and P J Williams are seeking poets and their rhymes, beats, moves, truth to fill a void in the discussion of music and poetry’s intersections. For a forthcoming collection from Minor Arcana Press, they seek “poems that engage or reference hip-hop in a variety of ways, from the music and artists to the clothing, dancing, and culture as a whole.” Check out their submissions page here.

Call for Submissions: Stories of spouse/partner addiction

Mental health agency HeretoHelp is curating stories form Canadian writers about the dynamics between spouses and partners when addiction is involved, preferably stories half-written by each couple to make a complete story. Pays $150 per story. Deadline TBA. More info here.

Call for Submissions: You’re Not Here

The Feminist Art Conference is seeking visual artists for a month long art exhibition for International Women’s Day at Daniels Spectrum that will take place throughout the month of March. Drawing on its location in Regent Park, the show will be themed around displacement, uprooting, and relocation. Deadline for applications is January 15. Check out the full guidelines here.

Submissions for Indie Writers’ Deathmatch 7 are now open!


art by Patrick Burgomaster

Do you have what it takes to compete in the world’s most dangerous story competition?



This year, for the first time ever, Deathmatch is open to fiction, non-fiction, poetry and comics entries (up to 2,000 words.)

Winners receive the Indie Writer’s Makeover, which includes a consultation with literary agent Sam Hiyate, a meeting with Globe & Mail culture columnist and novelist Russell Smith, and a meeting with one of Canada’s leading small-press publishers, BookThug!

Plus $200 cash and publication in the Spring 2015 edition of Broken Pencil.

DEADLINE: DECEMBER 21, 2014 at 11:59pm




Zine Review: Creative Evolution


Perzine, Liza, Issue 1,, $1

Creative Evolution is a zine that took me straight back to my own youth: rooftop singing with friends, first crushes on girls, boys, pixie cuts, all-ages concerts and dealing with parents. While this subject matter runs the risk of being trite, Creative Evolution is not. Far from it. Liza’s sincerity is not teenage posturing. In fact, it is careful and self-conscious. Her prose reminds me of Michelle Tea (Valencia, etc.) as she beautifully, but matter-of-factedly tells her stories of love, rage and special moments. Creative Evolution is classic: quarterpage, stapled, black and white, white cutout word banners and hand-drawn images. Liza has written her email address for trades/letters/ideas on the back. Photocopied constellations dot the backgrounds on most pages. My favourite parts are Liza’s comics. In Creative Evolution #2: the pizza on the floor edition, her line drawings perfectly depict her nervousness as she professes her love to a girl (with Kimya Dawson’s “My Rollercoaster” playing in the background). The dilemma of whether or not to hold her crush’s hand was as agonizing to read now as it was to experience as a teenager (and still is, truth be told!). The cover image says it all; two hands with black sharpie Xs (demarcating their underage
statuses) at a show, thumbs just barely touching. Everything about this zine makes my heart melt. My one criticism to Liza would be the section “shitty poetry time!!” Not because
it was shitty — quite the opposite, it was awesome! Own your poetry, girl! (Amy Siegel)

Fun With Crowdfunding: Translating Pow Pow Press


by Michel Hellman [via kickstarter]

Pow Pow Press is a French language comics press in Montréal who have released works from such big name creators as Guy Delisle and Pascal Girard, as well as emerging artists like Cathon. With fifteen titles under their belt, Pow Pow now moves into the next phase of their life by expanding into the English Language market. A first wave of books includes Michel Hellman’s beautiful Mile End.

As everyone knows, a good translation is an artful thing, itself a trying and creative act. Add in the hybrid medium that is comics, and it’s an exciting — though costly — endeavour. Please think of donating through the Pow Pow Press kickstarter page today!