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Monthly Archives: November 2010

And so, we come to the end of the Pitouie blog tour. (Except for, which did an interview with me but hasn’t updated its website since November 16. Don’t hold your breath for that one, I guess.) Anyway, we’re winding things up at Open Book Toronto, which not only posted today an epic screed by me on the subject of the novel-writing process, but which has also been running a Pitouie contest all week. Technically, I think that contest is still open, so get in there and win yourself some stuff.








The penultimate stop on the grand Pitouie Internet Tour is the blog of Maisonneuve magazine. There, Simon Liem will provide you with his evaluation of my literary efforts, along with a few words from myself. Not sure if this is properly classified as a review or an interview, but blogs care not for such taxonomies.





Today, it’s a game of 20 Questions with rob mclennan over at the aptly named rob mclennan’s blog. Twenty questions is quite a few, but the only one I couldn’t asnwer at all was this: “What fragrance reminds you of home?” I can’t speak for rob, but my home doesn’t smell of anything in particular. So I blew my chance at a perfect score. So it goes.



Chris Eng has a new site called HoodieRipper where he will shortly be posting tales of punk romance. He and I recently had one of those incomprehensible multi-valenced email conversations, which he has now boiled-down to sane dimensions and posted. We talked mostly about the future of writing as the world goes all-digital all the time. Check it out. He also reviewed Pitouie and said it didn’t stink. Thanks Chris.



You know what? I need a break from islands and the Arctic. I want to talk about motorcycles. Oh look! Angela Hickman of Books Under Skin has been kind enough to indulge me. In her introduction, she was also kind enough to call me twisted and multi-layered. Oh, wait. She meant the book. The book is twisted and multi-layered. Oh, wait again. Twist-ee. The book is twisty. And multi-… Ah screw it. Let’s get to the bikes.






I’m not even taking the weekend off here. Straight on with the tour. Today, The Book Mine Set has posted an interview with yours truly. The proprietor, John Mutford, lives in Yellowknife. He therefore knows a hell of a lot more about life in the north than I do, but he was kind enough to say my depiction is not an insult to every living soul in the territories. So that’s good. Blurb for the back cover of the second edition: “Not an insult to every living soul in the territories.”


I’m on a blog tour to promote Pitouie. For the last five days I’ve had the honour of guest-posting at The Afterword, the book blog of the National Post. For posterity, here are my words of wisdom.

I’m now leaving this slick, corporate blog behind me and heading into indie country. Check back between now and next Friday to see me babble books in public. That’s right. I’m using this blog to track all the places I’m blogging. What have I become?



PitouieSo I suppose I should have started with this post. Like I said, I’m new to the whole blogging thing. My name is Derek Winkler and I’ve written a novel called Pitouie. It’s just been published by The Workhorsery. See that picture there? That’s my book, on a shelf, in a book store. Pretty cool, huh?

It’s the story of a bored hack reporter who works for a trade magazine that covers the waste management industry. One day, out of a clear blue inbox, he gets an invitation to cover a business conference on Federated Pitouie, an itty-bitty island in the South Pacific Ocean. The government of the island has decided to raise some cash by auctioning-off the use of its volcano as a hazardous waste dump to the highest corporate bidder. Would he like to write about it? Why not? It’s not every day you get to witness something so kinky on a national scale.

He goes. He dusts off ancient, barely remembered journalistic procedures and attempts to work the story. He finds that things on Pitouie are even stranger than he expected them to be, and that events on the island are somehow tied to obscure matters that took place in an Inuit village on the coast of the Arctic Ocean in 1973.

This is a book aimed at a few very specific demographic sectors. It will appeal primarily to certain groups of Inuit who live in and around the delta of the Mackenzie River. It is also precisely targeted at the residents of the South Pacific island archipelago reaching from New Zealand to Hawaii. Tertiarily, it may keep the scant attention of guys in their thirties who feel they’ve wasted the best years of their lives. It may give them hope.






First book soldSpent the weekend in Montreal at Expozine. Fun times. Got to see a part of the city I’d never been in before. Got to sleep on the couch of two charming women who had a collection of old Leonard Cohen and Kate Bush LPs. Talked to a nice older gentleman who explained in very great detail how to get the best possible sound from my computer. Sold some books. Took a picture of a nice lady who was the first person in history to buy a copy of my book. That’s her on the right. Ate several cheeseburgers. Listened to a lot of Tom Waits on the drive back. There are worse ways to spend a weekend.

Oh yes, and my esteemed publishers at The Workhorsery finally got around to updating their website to reflect the fact of Pitouie‘s existence.