What Does the Fox Say? More Importantly, Why does He Say It?
It started off years ago as the dream of a local bookstore in the garage next to my house. Back then, I had never heard of the term 'indie author', the Amazon was a river in Brazil and the term 'literary agent' was as elusive as an elf or a fairy, hidden within the realm of SciFi/Fantasy. Years later, I took that still unrealized dream to a small storefront on Bay & Algoma, with visions of foxes painted onto the brick. Later still, as my experience in the literary world grew (along with my circle of writing friends), The Laughing Fox became an independent publishing company, complete with covers, editing, distribution and marketing support. Alas, all in the realm of dreams until now.
That circle of writers became an inspiration as we encouraged each other down the literary road. We started out going for dinners as a group, celebrating successes, drowning our sorrows and editing the menus of each restaurant we visited. The camaraderie we felt during those dinners soon morphed to weekends away at camps and resorts, where the only sound to be heard before 6:00pm was the intense tapping of laptop keys and the occasional frustrated sigh. Then, at 6:00 sharp, all devices were put away when the wine was uncorked, dinner was served and the discussions continued well into the night.
We have been with each other for many years and seen that camaraderie grow into something strong, vibrant, complex and powerful. Now, the inspiration behind it is bringing that same experience to the wider writing community, starting with the Laughing Fox Retreat 2015. In partnership with NOWW (Northwestern Ontario Writers Workshop), this three day conference will be held Oct 16 - Oct 18 at Sleeping Giant Provincial Park. There will be several expert panels, an inspiration-driven nature walk, dedicated time for writing as well as writing workshops, and of course, artisanal cuisine from local caterers and regional breweries. Naturally, there will be wine to go along with that cheese. ;) For more info on the upcoming Retreat, click on the Retreat 2015 tab at the top of the page.
But this is just the beginning, for in the near future , we hope to launch a public collective, inviting the sharing of resources with an aim toward publication. We have those who are experienced publishers who know the ropes of formatting for Lighting Source and Createspace. We have agented authors who can advise on where to start your search and what a good query looks like. We have authors who have forgone the agent-route and found success with publishers both large and small, and those who have self-published to great success. We have authors who are brilliant editors who delight in taking a first draft to a finished work in painstaking order. We have illustrators and freelancers and marketers and administrators, but most of all, we have a shared passion for this world we have found ourselves impossibly mired in - the world of storytelling.
I still see that little storefront on Bay and Algoma. It goes from one renter to another and I wonder if it's just waiting for those foxes, laughing their way across the brick. That is no longer in the realm of SciFi/Fantasy. It's simply a matter of time.
If you're at one of the many stages in the writing journey and wish to connect, be encouraged, ask advice, give advice, or just recommend a fine bottle of cabernet sauvignon, then give a yip and we'll be happy to talk. Keep checking back as our plans grow and develop but until then, read, write, publish and repeat. You'll find yourself laughing in no time.