Book Beat: Fundraisers, Green’s Slang Dictionary, and the World Fantasy Awards

Hello again! It’s Emily, back to tell you about the latest Book Beat buzz. We’re officially a week into November and NaNoWriMo. Shout out to all who are participating!

This week, I have some literary fundraisers, a dictionary update, and a few award-winning fantasy to share. So, let’s get right into it.

Crowdfunding for Defendants in Galloway Lawsuit

If you follow Canadian literature, you’re likely aware of the continuing controversy surrounding The University of British Columbia (UBC) and fired professor Steven Galloway.

Either way, here’s a quick recap: earlier this year, a former student accused Galloway of sexual assault, and he was let go from his position at UBC. A bunch of big names in CanLit called out UBC for the way it handled the situation in a letter dubbed UBC Accountable, but the letter didn’t really show any support for sexual assault victims. Some removed their names from the letter while others —*cough* Margaret Atwood *cough*—doubled down in their support for Galloway.

Galloway eventually won damages for statements UBC made during the investigation process that violated his privacy, but the faculty withdrew its claim to have him reinstated. Established and emerging writers have been penning op-eds and essays in response to these events, stoking the flames of a wider debate on harassment and inappropriate behaviour in creative writing programs specifically, as well as the Canadian literary scene as a whole. In short, the CanLit community is fractured.

Okay, that wasn’t that quick, but it’s complicated, and not all information has been made public. You can find more context on Open Counter-Letter Galloway.

Despite the issue causing a great deal of pain in the CanLit community, especially to those just beginning their literary careers, the controversy continues. At the end of last month, Christie Blatchford published an article in the National Post that not only named the main complainant but also announced that Galloway is suing her and more than twenty individuals who have spoken up about Galloway and UBC Accountable for defamation.

Yet, just as supporters came forward when Moira Donegan was sued for the Shitty Media Men list, so too have people come together to support the individuals Galloway is suing. For example, author Amanda Leduc has created a GoFundMe for Galloway’s defendants. The fund exceeded its initial goal of $50,000 within just twenty-four hours, and as of writing this, it has passed $60,000 with donations from over 800 people.

Additionally, author A.H. Reaume has been creating care packages to send to the defendants so they know that they are not alone. And Rahim Ladha (the individual behind the Spark, Echo, and Nova prizes) is organizing a fundraising party event to take place in February.

Character Name Charity Auction

In other literary-related fundraising efforts, a bunch of authors are auctioning off naming rights for their upcoming novels to raise money for Freedom from Torture, an organization that helps torture survivors rebuild their lives.

Jack Reacher author Lee Child is among several authors participating. “Torture victims are the most damaged and demoralised people among us, so any move to embrace, console and help them is to be applauded and supported,” Childs told The Guardian in explaining his decision to join this fundraising endeavour.

The event will take place on November 15th, where several other authors will be auctioning character names. Other auction items include memorabilia from Helen Mirren, an art commission by Quentin Blake, and a portrait by Chris Riddel.

Auctioning naming rights has proved fruitful in recent years. George R.R. Martin, for example, raised $40,000 by auctioning names of characters that will meet violent ends in the Song of Ice and Fire series.

Tickets for the Freedom from Torture event are £50 each, but those unable to attend can submit bids online.

Green’s Dictionary of Slang is Now Free

Word nerds rejoice! You’ll now have free access to another resource: Green’s Dictionary of Slang. Back in October, creator Jonathon Green announced that he would be ending subscriptions, removing logins, and making all Green’s Dictionary content free to all users. In the news post on the dictionary website, he stated he just needed time to set it up.

Well, November 5th has come, and with it the latest update to the site. We can all now see the dictionary’s full entries, including timelines of use for everything from “alter of pleasure” to “zorba’d.”

World Fantasy Award Winners

The World Fantasy Awards have been announced!

The 2018 World Fantasy Convention announced the winners at its culminating banquet on Sunday, November 4th. Prior to the event, nominees for the awards were chosen from two sources. World Fantasy Convention members of the last three conventions voted on some of the nominees, while a panel of judges put forth the rest of the titles. All nominees came from a pool of works published in 2017.

The best novel category saw a tie, with the award going to both The Changeling by Victor LaValle and Jade City by Fona Lee. Also among the evening’s winners were:

  • Ellen Klages’ Passing Strange for best novella
  • “The Birding: A Fairy Tale” by Natalia Theodoridou for best short story
  • The New Voices of Fantasy edited by Peter S. Beagle and Jacob Weisman for best anthology.
  • Justina Ireland and Troy L. Wiggins in the Special Award, Non-Professional category for FIYAH: Magazine of Black Speculative Fiction

Check out the full list of winners if you’re looking for fantasy reads!

New Releases This Week

Cover of Whose Boat is this Boat

Whose Boat Is This Boat? Comments That Don’t Help in the Aftermath of a Hurricane  by the Staff of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

Past Tense (Jack Reacher #23) by Lee Child

Empress of All Seasons by Emiko Jean

Wonder Valley by Ivy Pochoda

Happy Thursday!