Friday, April 17, 2009

Day One

Friday April 17th, 2009.
Portuguese Park @ Marie Anne & St. Laurent (across from Leonard Cohen's house)

Four residencies were had today. 16 pages total. Forty sore fingers.

Anna J. McIntyre
Taien Ng-Chan
Valérie Robitaille
Kim Fu

It was a beautiful day to sit in the park and run the first day of residencies.

Everyone did a great job of delving into their own words and immersing themselves in public while the clack of the typewriter competed with sirens and construction. Pigeons and pedestrians posed gawking obstacles but everyone seemed very pleased to watch me push someone in a wheel chair typing to their hearts content. At times it felt as though we entered a bubble that excluded all that whirled around us.

Writers had the option of remaining stationary in the park or going for an assisted stroll. The stationary spectacle in the park allowed bypassers to observe the writer's habits and patterns. Pushing the cart proved to be an interesting psychological experiment. Writing has become such a non-physical venture nowadays. What with computers we try to tell stories by hitting the same button over and over again. I'll always thought it was fascinating that writing by hand with a pen built muscle memory that triggered creative brain patterns. The digital realm provides mostly visual and auditory distraction, none of the texture of real writing. Using a typewriter though is also an odd action as it demands a considerable physical output to write. It becomes very methodical. The typewriter coupled with being pushed around on a wheelchair proves to create an wonderful rhythm as the typing sound clacks against brick and the wheels dip and drop in each sidewalk split.

Speaking with Kim Fu this afternoon we discussed how she was able to focus her attention even when rolling thorugh the intersection of Mont-Royal and St. Laurent. It seems that the Nomadesk creates a pretty strong physical experience. Motion -in the Futurist sense- is constantly felt. The filling of peripheral vision. Fingers pushing keys. The changing smells of streets - burning meat, garbage, spring dirt, coffee, dog poo, the buds of plants. The rumbling beneath your bum, the bounce of the wheels. It all adds up to be a strong sensory load, and yet each author did a stellar job of staying focused and productive in their environment.

Tomorrow is another day. Four more residents are slotted in at the CCA and the FOFA and there are two more open spaces. Five more residents on Sunday in Parc Lafontaine.


Sunday, April 12, 2009

Current Call Out for Residents!

›››Nomadesk Writer's Residency‹‹‹

The Nomadesk Writer's Residency is a site-specific-residency in Montreal, Canada. It is an experiment in nomadic authorship and writing in public space. The residency intends to expose the writer's secret craft to the public, while simultaneously providing the writer with portable solitude.

The Nomadesk is a traveling cart/writer's studio available for short-term residencies in both pre-chosen and requested locations in parts of Montreal. Residents are invited to write for one 30/60 minute slot. A small portable library is avalable for inspirational reading material.

Currently Available Sites in April:
Marie Anne Parkette (St. Laurent + Marie Anne) - April 17th - 10 - 1pm
Parc Lafontaine - April 19th - 12 - 3pm
The CCA - April 18th - 1:30 - 4:30 pm
The FOFA Gallery - April 18th - 5 - 7pm

The Nomadesk is currently accepting suggested sites during the following days: April 17, 18, 19, during hours not mentioned above.

The Application Process:

Applications should be included in the body of an email and contain:
-the writer's name
-their preferred date
-preferred time (flexibility is appreciated)
-a phone number
-a specific location if desired
-no more than four sentences as to why they wish to participate and what they expect to accomplish.

Application Deadline: Wednesday April 15th, 2009

Please send submissions to:

The rights to the work written during the residency belong to the individual author, but the Nomadesk Writer's Residency reserves the right to own the original document and will provide digital copies to authors. Possibility of publication will be discussed with author.