Jaime Woo on the Development of His Self-Published Book Gaming Grindr

Jaime Woo is the co-founder and co-organizer of Gamercamp, an annual festival in Toronto celebrating the art, playfulness, and creativity of games.

Woo has been featured on, in, or at CBC Radio, InnerSPACE, Electric Playground, The Financial Post, The Globe and Mail, Metro, xtra!, Fab, and The A.V. Club.

Jaime is in the process of self-publishing a book, Gaming Grindr, and has successfully surpassed his Indiegogo fundraising goal.

With over 4 million users worldwide, Grindr, a queer cruising app first launched in 2009, is the largest all-male location-based social network.

With approximately 10,000 new users downloading the app every day, Woo, a technology journalist, asks: “Is Grindr a game?” Gaming Grindr explores the rules, how users “win,” and how to play better.

Take a look at his campaign video.

And here’s our chat about why he’s writing the book, and why he chose self-publishing over the traditional model.

Jaime Woo of Gamercamp on the Function of Play

Jaime Woo is the co-founder and co-organizer of Gamercamp, an annual festival in Toronto celebrating the art, playfulness, and creativity of games.

Woo has been featured on, in, or at CBC Radio, InnerSPACE, Electric Playground, The Financial Post, The Globe and Mail, Metroxtra!, Fab, and The A.V. Club.

I’ve been interested of late in the role of games and play in our daily lives, as well as how to arrive at a shared language between youth and adults in conversations of appropriate use and moderation. Woo makes the point that it’s because we believe games don’t offer a productive goal that we’re quick to call a child “addicted” to play. Woo encourages us to look closer at games for evidence of skill-building, and offers a few suggestions for games and books to encourage your child/teen toward design.

Enjoy our chat!

Lindsay Zier-Vogel Talks to Julie Wilson about The Love Lettering Project

If you’ve been near a newspaper, magazine, radio, or television in the past few weeks, you’ve by now heard of Lindsay Zier-Vogel, creator of The Love Lettering Project, a community arts endeavour that encourages the people of Toronto to write love letters to the things, people, and places they adore.

Lindsay’s enthusiasm is infectious, so I asked her to join me in a (very) early morning coffee chat via Skype, recorded Friday, August 17, 2012. I was in my home. Lindsay was in hers. And I asked her the one burning question on everyone’s mind: Is she really that happy?

For this and more . . . watch the video below. (And many thanks to Lindsay for the great conversation, and to The Awesome Foundation for tossing some cash at this great contribution to Toronto culture and pride.)

From The Love Lettering Project:

Write love to what you love.

The Love Lettering Project is a community arts project bringing love letters to strangers.

The Love Lettering Project focuses on the joy and goodness of the world we live in, without requiring anything back from the recipient. It gets people talking about their city and the stories of their days. In this, The Love Lettering Project is participatory and has the ability to transform a familiar landscape too easy to take for granted.

For eight years, writer and artist Lindsay Zier-Vogel has been writing love poems for The Love Lettering Project, turning them into one-of-a-kind paper and thread collages, slipping them into airmail envelopes marked “love,” and distributing them anonymously — tucking them in bicycle spokes, bushes and letter boxes, leaving them on doorsteps, window ledges and café tables, hiding them in the pages of books in libraries around the city to be discovered later by strangers.

In 2012, it’s your chance to join in on the love lettering. Lindsay will be set up at events all over the city during the summer of 2012. You can write a love note to something you love about the city, slip it into an airmail envelope, then leave it for a stranger to stumble upon! Find out where you can make your love letter here!

Heather Jessup on the Avro Arrow, the inspiration for her debut novel

Heather Jessup, author of The Lightning Field (Gaspereau Press, 2012).Heather Jessup teaches at Dalhousie University in the English Department where she took some time out to Skype with me about her novel The Lightning Field (Gaspereau Press, 2012).

Since the book’s release, Jessup has been shortlisted for the Thomas Head Raddall Atlantic Fiction Award and the John and Margaret Savage First Book Award.

About the book:
The Lightning Field, by Heather Jessup (Gaspereau Press, 2012).
Set against the backdrop of Cold War Toronto, The Lightning Field follows the lives of Peter and Lucy Jacobs from their post-war courtship through marriage and child-rearing in the suburbs. Though spanning four decades, the book pivots on the events of a single day: October 4, 1957. On this day, the Russians launch Sputnik into orbit, the Avro Arrow—the most advanced jet plane of its time, whose wings Peter Jacobs has engineered—rolls out onto the tarmac to great ceremony, and, in a nearby field, Lucy Jacobs is struck by lightning on her way to the event.

The Globe and Mail calls The Lightning Field, “Jessup’s homage to a dream, to the knockout movie playing in her mind.”

Enjoy our chat. (I did!)

Topics include: Jessup’s own family connection to the Avro Arrow; life in the 50s and 60s; the wingspan of my hair flips; and, a guest appearance by my cat, Oscar.

Heather Jessup: website | Twitter

Upcoming appearances:

An Evening with the Thomas H. Raddall Atlantic Fiction Prize Nominees David Adams Richards, Valerie Compton and Heather Jessup
Date: Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Time: 7:30 PM-9:00 PM
Location: The Black Box Theatre—Sir James Dunn Hall, Fredericton, NB, Canada

Date: Thursday, October 11, 2012
Location: Lane’s Privateer Inn—Liverpool, NS, Canada

Thomas Head Raddall Atlantic Fiction AwardDate: Friday, October 12, 2012
Location: Maritime Conservatory of Performing Arts—Halifax, NS, Canada

Gaspereau Press Wayzegoose
Date: Saturday, October 20, 2012
Location: Kentville, NS, Canada