Category Archives: In the Community

Beyond the Cover: author reading on social justice

This past Saturday, at 7:30 pm, we (Midway Press, a division of Playfort Publishing) hosted an author reading at the SAGA Public Art Gallery in Salmon Arm, BC. Three authors each read from his or her latest published work. Although the story lines and contexts were different, each had a theme of social justice. The event, therefore, carried that exact theme: Social justice.

Three old friends (and authors) decided to get together to discuss a topic that each had recently written about: Social justice. Each spoke about a different aspect, with different stories: Don Sawyer about youth growing up in less than ideal situations, whether it be three native siblings taken from their mother and the reserve and put into separate foster homes, or a young boy witnessing his father die in a horrific car accident, or a teen girl being raped by her church minister in his young adult fiction book Running; Tom Wayman about the Afghan war and its absence and presence in Canadians’ everyday lives as citizens of a nation at war in his collection of poems Dirty Snow; and Carmen Rodriguez about three generations in a family affected by the 1973 military coup in Chile, and their flight to Canada as political refugees in her fictional take on true events in Retribution. Although each book is about something entirely different on the surface, they each speak to how social injustice affects everyone, whether or not they are even aware of it.

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Despite the dark (and I’m sure some of you are thinking depressing) overtones of the topic, each author injected humour into his or her book and the reading, along with something we all can relate to: Hope. It is truly amazing what human beings can overcome when given hope.

The discussion afterwards was lively and fascinating, with a range of points from educational matters in post-secondary institutions, such as leadership and politics, to communication barriers in this new technological world.

The authors signed and sold their books, each at a discount from the list price – even we got our hands on autographed books from Tom and Carmen!

We would like to thank Don Sawyer, Tom Wayman, and Carmen Rodriguez for allowing us to be a part of this enlightening event, as well as all the people who showed up, listened intently, asked questions and gave comments, and bought books from these authors. We couldn’t have done it without all of you!

The PFP team

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Family Literacy Week

Happy Family Literacy Week everyone!

We have been celebrating all week long with our local literacy group, Literacy Alliance of the Shuswap Society (LASS). They have put a lot of work and effort into creating programs and events for our community to take part in for “Unplug and Play“. We specifically sponsored “Random Acts of Reading”, where local celebrities read books aloud to different community groups in various locations all week long. Here are a few pictures from our “Random Acts of Reading”. This is how we celebrate Family Literacy Week in the Shuswap:

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Thank you to everyone who sponsored an event, took part in an event, and/or attended an event for Family Literacy Week in Salmon Arm. You have all helped to increase awareness of literacy needs in our community. We at Playfort Publishing are very pleased to have been a part of it!

Thanks everyone!

The PFP team

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And the winner is…

Prize pack awarded to School District 37 Delta, BC

We are very excited to announce the winner of Playfort Publishing’s BC School District Prize Pack draw! To see a list of the school districts involved in the draw, please click here. After lunch I had Louise pull a name out of a hat (actually it was a little paper cup), and the winner is…

BC School District 37 Delta!

Congratulations! We will package up your prize pack and send it in the mail today. We wonder what you will do with the goodies, and we would love to hear about it!

Congratulations and happy holidays!

The PFP team

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BC school district prize pack draw

Our Reading Takes You Places poster

Back in the summer we sent our Reading Takes You Places posters to the librarians at each of the public elementary schools in British Columbia. I spent a LOT of time folding each poster, creating mailing labels, affixing the mailing labels, organizing into appropriate school district piles, creating and printing a letter to each of the school districts, packaging everything up, and mailing each package to its appropriate school district office. This took a lot of hours, caused some blisters and paper cuts, and took four trips up and down the “steepest stairs in the world” to get all those packages into my car to bring over to the post office (and another 4 trips from my car to the post office). But all’s fair in love and literacy!

At Playfort Publishing we know how important literacy is, and starting young is the best way to ensure strong literacy levels later in life. That is why we support librarians, literacy groups, and teachers, and why we created the Reading Takes You Places posters for school librarians.

So we sent these out to all the school districts in BC for free and asked them to distribute to each of the elementary schools’ librarians. We then explained that we would be doing a prize pack draw of books and material to go to a winning school district. All they had to do was send us an email saying they wanted to be included in the draw. Out of the 59 school district offices in BC, we got a response from 9. Well, that means there is a 1 in 9 chance of winning! The schools to be included in the draw are the following:

  1. SD 27 Cariboo-Chilcotin
  2. SD 35 Langley
  3. SD 37 Delta
  4. SD 61 Greater Victoria
  5. SD 75 Mission
  6. SD 78 Fraser-Cascade
  7. SD 79 Cowachan Valley
  8. SD 82 Coast Mountain
  9. SD 83 North Okanagan-Shuswap

And the lucky winning school district will receive this wonderful prize pack from Playfort Publishing:

The prize pack

  • 2 copies of The Lunch Bag Chronicles by Don Sawyer
  • 2 copies of No Way Out by Melanie Jackson
  • 2 copies of Raw Deal by Melanie Jackson
  • 2 copies of Running by Don Sawyer
  • 1 copy of our latest catalogue
  • 1 chance to win a free Skype author presentation

This prize pack is an estimated value of $110.00 (does not include the value of the Skype session). Our titles are for reluctant readers and are great reads for boys (and girls). The books will be a wonderful addition to any school library. Thank you to all of the school librarians that put our posters up in their libraries and who spend their lives teaching and learning with kids. We will announce the winning school district tomorrow (Friday, December 15, 2011) at 2:00 pm P.S.T. (unless we still do not have Internet access in the office, which means it will be posted as soon as possible).

Good luck!


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