And then my poor meatball / was nothing but mush.

Hey, I’m always one to admit when I’m wrong.

Or almost always. Like, 97% of the time. As in, when I’m absolutely sure I cannot refute anybody else’s arguments.

I thought I had completely sold out of all copies of Guilt Pasta, my 2007 chapbook. I had no immediate plans to reprint it, which implied that they were, in the sing-songy words of every two-year-old, “Aw gawn!”

But then, Burning Effigy Press editor-in-chief Monica S. Kuebler found four unsold copies somewhere at the bottom of her suitcase or something. She brought them to Word on the Street this week… and sold two of them.

That leaves two. I have them. And they’re still for sale. If you hurry, you can buy one of them.

Right now.

Don’t all rush at once now, people.

Here’s the official description, from the Burning Effigy website:

Recipe for Guilt Pasta:
Mix equal portions of Spiderman, Roger Ebert and Ernest Hemingway. Stir in a pinch of the Ugly Duckling and a dash of the girl who broke your heart. Now add a sadistic army brat who clobbers mice with hammers, a jailed sex killer who feels bad about neglecting a parakeet, and an obnoxious co-worker who won’t shut up about his fantasies of turning Canada into a fascist regime. Blend well. Serve immediately.

Result: The third chapbook by Toronto’s notorious spoken-word satirist, Jeff Cottrill. This new collection of short stories and monologues combines quirky characterizations, black humour and offbeat cultural references in a way you won’t soon forget. Exploding nerds, bad cockney accents, a journey to the afterlife, lots of very good beer… Guilt Pasta has something for everyone. (Best recommended with lots of parmesan cheese.)

Not only that, but it has a really funky blue-and-yellow cover designed by Brett Bakker.

A certain J. Blackmore of Broken Pencil magazine wrote that Guilt Pasta was nothing but angry, pretentious, arty garbage, and that I was an a—–e for having written it. I was amazed that he could give such a strong opinion of the chapbook without actually having read it.
(Seriously, there was absolutely no evidence in the review that the dude had read more than two pages of the book. The only specific reference he made from its contents was to a silly, throwaway Hemingway parody stuck somewhere in the middle — and he completely missed the joke. And it’s not like it was a subtle joke. That’s the effort you’re getting from your neighbourhood book critics, kids.)

On the other hand — here’s what a couple of people who actually read the chapbook thought of it…
U.K.-based novelist/poet John Stiles
Toronto writer/critic Carolina Smart (scroll down to near the bottom)

So there.
You can buy a copy of Guilt Pasta by going to my page at and clicking the little orange button under the cover thumbnail that says “Buy Now”. Or… you can just wait until the next Toronto Small Press Book Fair. But they may be gone by then.

And now, to close, I’m going to post another goofy Alfred Hitchcock video. Because I can.

Best. Trailer. Ever.

OMG bookz iz teh awesome dood!!! lolol (Sent via ÜberWordPress)

You like books, don’t you? Of course you do.

That’s why you’re going to the twenty-first annual Word on the Street book and magazine festival this Sunday, September 26 at Queen’s Park. Once again, Burning Effigy Press is going to have a booth in the Fringe section, somewhere. I’ll be there for part of the time.

And because you like CDs almost as much as you like books, you should know that Clown with a Coat Hanger will be available for sale at the Burning Effigy table. Yeah man.

In addition, author Ian Rogers will be on hand from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. to sign copies of his latest chapbook, The Ash Angels, the sequel to Temporary Monsters. Other BE authors will be present later for their own signings as well.

Of course, there’ll be far more to see at the festival than just us. Yann Martel, the guy who wrote The Life of Pi (you know, the one about the tiger and the raft), will be there. So will Erica Ehm, now a children’s author, but better known as the unbridled fantasy of an entire generation of Canadian teenage boys during her MuchMusic years. And Jessica Holmes, too. And soon-to-be-ex-Mayor David Miller, and Robert Sawyer, and the husband of the lady who designed this very website. And, it would seem, nobody whose last name begins with “U”.

There’ll also be a number of staff writers from The Toronto Star. Including movie critic Peter Howell, who once wrote me an angry, bitter e-mail saying that I would never have what it takes to write for a major newspaper. (Guess I showed him. Wait… never mind.)

Yes, I know… this is my second post in a row about a Burning Effigy event that is only marginally connected to me. I do have a gig coming up in November. Seriously. Be patient.

And now, for no apparent reason, here’s Alfred Hitchcock sexually harassing Anny Ondra in a 1929 sound test:

Have a happy.