...by Shelley Banks (Thistledown Press) is my first book purchase of 2016 and a lovely one it is. Fitting, too, as I got my hands on the book on Wednesday in Regina where I attended the ceremony at Government House formally introducing Gerald Hill as Saskatchewan Poet Laureate.
Gerry was my mentor in the Saskatchewan Writers' Guild mentorship program many years ago and has been a great friend and force in the CanLit community. Shelley, also very active and supportive in the community, was at the ceremony as well both as writer and official event photographer. After a year of self-imposed physical exile from the literary scene, it was wonderful to see so many writer friends in person. We shared stories, had fun, and made some new memories, including one hilarious moment that Gerry relived in his interview with Sheila Coles on the CBC Morning Edition on Friday. H and I were just leaving Regina at the time. We laughed our way out of the city.