On Saving from author Shane Neilson

One time, I was walking up Delhi Street in Guelph, Ontario. The incline was slight. Overcast sky, about 11:15 am. My son had been taken to the Guelph General Hospital by ambulance a few minutes before. I walked up the street wondering if he was still alive. Did the seizure cease? I thought. Or did he stop breathing? He had convulsed for so long . . .

At the top of the hill, the hospital. Police cars idled at the entrance. No ambulances blaring in, or out. It was then I made the deal, the one that continues to define my existence. I reached way back in time, but also forward. I looked up to the sky like a hundred million agnostics before me and said, “Please, don’t let him die. I’ll do anything.” This was a prayer sent with fury, beyond the blue. 

He didn’t die. But that was also the price of my asking, that he wouldn’t be the same, that he couldn’t be cured, that his diagnosis was deferred. Saving is a story about how a young family saved itself, for lack of anyone else to do that work – a story about a sick little girl and boy, children of a mad father, himself the child of another mad father, all of us adrift in an uncaring medical system.

A Daytripper’s Guide to Manitoba CONTEST

Tag @GREATPLAINSPUB in a social media post with photos of your favorite Manitoba adventure destination. Your favourite hiking, trail, landmark, tucked-away restaurant, off-the-beaten-path attraction! A total of 4 winners will be chosen randomly by username and will receive a free, signed copy of the 4th edition of A Daytripper’s Guide to Manitoba. Winners will be contacted directly through Direct Message and will need to provide shipping information. Be sure your profile is set to public so that we see the post. Contest is open NOW and closes July 25. Winners fill be notified after the August long weekend.

Great Plains Books up for Awards!

We are proud to share recent awards shortlists that include Great Plains’ Books!

Vermin by Lori Hahnell is shortlisted for the Short Story Collection award in the 2022 Alberta Literary Awards. More information can be found HERE.

Lessons in Fusion by Primrose Madayag Knazan is a finalist for a Snow Willow Award (Grades 7+) in the 2022 Saskatchewan Young Reader’s Choice Awards. More information HERE.

Congratulations to our authors on this well-deserved recognition!

Black text on gray background, images of the book covers of for Vermin by Lori Hahnell and Lessons in Fusion by Primrose Madayag Knazan

2021 Holiday Gift Guide

November 25, 2021

The cold weather has arrived and December fast approaches! Our 2021 Holiday Gift Guide is here to help with your various gift giving needs, and to help you find a few items to add to your own list 🙂 In the guide you’ll see our most recent releases as well as some of our best books for all different kinds of readers and folks of all ages.

All Great Plains/Enfield & Wizenty/Yellow Dog books are available directly through our website and at fine booksellers everywhere. Why not start by checking out the low shipping rates from our friends McNally Robinson Booksellers.

Our Newest Team Member

We here at Great Plains Publications are delighted to welcome Keith Cadieux as our new Marketing Director.

Keith brings with him a range of experience working with several different arts organizations, writing and publishing experience, and he was a co-editor of an Enfield & Wizenty title: The Shadow Over Portage & Main. We’re excited to add this new member to our successful team and to share with you everything we’ve been working on. Stay tuned for more information on our Fall 2021 titles!

Great Plains is Moving!

As of June 22, 2021, Great Plains Publications will be located in Winnipeg’s Lord Roberts neighbourhood. Please note our new mailing address:

320 Rosedale Ave
Winnipeg, MB
R3L 1L8

Our contact information is otherwise unchanged. We are forwarding mail from our previous address for a limited time. Orders purchased through our website for pick-up in Winnipeg will be left in the front porch at 320 Rosedale Ave, which is accessible from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday to Friday. You will receive an email noting when your order is ready.

National Indigenous Peoples Day

Today is National Indigenous Peoples Day, a day for all Canadians to recognize and celebrate the unique heritage, diverse cultures and outstanding contributions of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples.
At Great Plains, we celebrate the works of Richard Van Camp, whose book Night Moves was recently released as an audiobook; Errol Ranville’s memoir Run As One; Leonard Flett’s From the Barren Lands; and Sheila North’s forthcoming memoir My Privilege, My Responsibility. We are honoured to share their stories.
At the same time that we celebrate Indigenous contributions and culture, we also acknowledge that this is a time of national grieving, and that there is still much work to do in dismantling white supremacy in our industry and our community. As a publisher located on Anishinaabe, Cree, Oji-Cree, Dakota, Dene, and Métis land, we dedicate ourselves to move forward in partnership with Indigenous communities in a spirit of reconciliation and collaboration. We add our names to the ongoing calls to implement all 94 of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s calls to action. We will be donating 25% of our website sales for the last two weeks of June to Wa-Say Healing Centre in Winnipeg.
We encourage settlers to learn more about Indigenous history and contemporary Indigenous perspectives through #OwnVoices reads. David Alexander Robertson has compiled a list of books by Indigenous writers about residential schools. For resources and information on taking more direct action, check out the On Canada Project – Settlers Take Action.

Night Moves and Abandoned Manitoba Audiobooks Now Available

We’re thrilled to announce the release of Night Moves and Abandoned Manitoba in audiobook format. You can now purchase these reader-favourite Great Plains Publications titles everywhere audiobooks are sold. We are taking steps to ensure our books are accessible to all readers, and the release of these audiobooks bring us one step closer to this goal. Both audiobooks were recorded in Winnipeg at Dacapo Productions, and narrated by Winnipeg-based vocal talent. Purchase the Night Moves audiobook here.

Night Moves and Abandoned Manitoba audiobooks

Night Moves is narrated by Marsha Rasmussen Knight, who is an Ojibwe-Metis professional artist, with her roots in Manitoba’s Interlake. She uses her multi-faceted experience in the arts as an avenue for social justice. She has worked with numerous non-profit organizations and agencies, including the Elizabeth Fry Society and Health Canada. As well, she was a Drama Facilitator for seven years working with female-identifying youth who were being sexually exploited. Marsha continues to develop projects with a goal of producing impact documentary films such as food insecurity and Indigenous Food Sovereignty. She also teaches Indigenous Performance at the University of Winnipeg.

“This group of 11 electrifying and sometimes horrifying tales – several revisiting characters from Van Camp’s previous books – teems with violence, shame, desire for revenge, sexuality, the supernatural, and hard-won second chances.”
 Starred Review, Dana Hansen, Quill & Quire

Abandoned Manitoba is narrated by the author, Gordon Goldsborough, who is an aquatic ecologist in the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Manitoba, and an active member of the Manitoba Historical Society, serving as its President and Head Researcher. His weekly radio series on CBC entitled “Abandoned Manitoba” was the inspiration for two best-selling books, starting with Abandoned Manitoba in 2016. The sequel, More Abandoned Manitoba, won the 2019 McNally Robinson Book of the Year Award. Purchase the Abandoned Manitoba audiobook here.

How to Find Canadian Books

When you’re looking for your next great read, do you seek out books by Canadian authors? If you’re in Manitoba, you might be especially likely to do so. Google search trends show that in the year 2020, Manitoba had the highest proportion of searches for “Canadian books” compared to other provinces. You can see a timeline of this data here

Screenshot from Google trends report on "Canadian books" searches in 2020
Screenshot of Google trend results for “Canadian books” searches in 2020

This data supports what we know as a Manitoba publisher: Manitobans want to read Canadian-authored books. Here are some other ways you can find Canadian books:

  • 49th Shelf: This website by the Association of Canadian Publishers has a fantastic search engine where you can select a category & subcategory according to your interests. From biochemistry, to bullying, to musical instruments, you’re sure to find something that peaks your interest. 
  • CBC Books: Here you’ll find author interviews, preview lists of upcoming titles, and links to radio shows featuring Canadian authors. Many of the books featured on CBC Books are award-nominated titles. 
  • Association of Manitoba Book Publishers: The AMBP represents a group of independent publishers in Manitoba. Every year the association releases a Book Blitz catalogue featuring must-read titles from Manitoba publishers. Check out the 2020 Book Blitz catalogue here

You can also search directly on a publisher’s website. At Great Plains Publications, we exclusively publish Canadian authors and permanent residents of Canada. This May, we’ll be publishing three new titles. Anna, Analyst is a contemporary middle grade book by Patti Edgar about a girl with a graphology obsession and publishes May 1. Next is Errol Ranville’s memoir Run as One on June 15. This is the book to read for a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to build a music career in Canada. Finally, you can get Thinking Big by Jim Blanchard on June 30. Thinking Big chronicles the history of Winnipeg businesses up to 1939. 

We hope you enjoy your next great Canadian read!

New releases from Great Plains Publications

2020 Holiday Gift Guide

Our 2020 Holiday Gift Guide is here to help you make your gift list and check it twice. We know your gifts this year will be filled with local love! In the guide you’ll find our latest and best books to make your holiday shopping simple. Featuring primarily Manitoba authors, these books will interest folks of all ages.

All Great Plains titles are available directly through our website and at fine booksellers everywhere (check out the low shipping rates from our friends at McNally Robinson.)

Join us at our Outdoor Book Sale!

On Sunday, August 9 from 10:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Great Plains Publications is holding an outdoor book sale right on our front porch.

We’re offering a selection of new and backlist titles at discounted prices so you can spend the rest of your summer reading the works of authors from Manitoba and beyond.

If you’ve been waiting for a chance to have Anita Daher sign your copy of You Don’t Have to Die in the End, be sure to visit between 2-4 p.m. Watch the event page (Facebook / Eventbrite) for further details on author visits, book prices, and more. Pre-order your books here.

Please note that only a limited selection of our backlist titles will be sold, so that we can draw focus to the incredible authors who were unable to launch their books in person this spring. We appreciate your support and can’t wait to see you in person!

Spring 2020 update

It’s safe to say we’ve finally reached spring in Winnipeg. We hope you’re enjoying the sunny weather with great books to keep you company. Today, we’re bringing you an assortment of positive book-related news.

Coop the Great goes to Germany!

We’re thrilled to announce that German language rights of Coop the Great have been sold to Little Tiger Verlag. This is our first foreign language translation for our Yellow Dog imprint, which launched in 2018.

“We are thrilled to see Coop The Great travelling across the globe. Coop is certainly an underdog, and the story of him overcoming his doubts is wonderful for young readers to experience. Coop is a very good boy!” — Mel Marginet, publisher

“I’m so glad to see Coop, the little dog that could, travelling the world and into the hands of more readers.” — Larry Verstraete, author of Coop the Great

Digital Book Launch

Anita Daher held a livestream launch for her new book, You Don’t Have to Die in the End in partnership with #CanadaPerforms, an initiative of the National Arts Centre. You can watch a video of the launch on Facebook or YouTube.

CBC Radio Features Great Plains Spring Authors

Each of our Spring 2020 authors were featured on Up to Speed with Ismaila Alfa, discussing and reading from their new books. You can listen to the interviews online here:

Summer Camp Reads

Cedar Dance by Monica Nawrocki was included on this Quill & Quire list – Why we need summer camp books now more than ever

Here are some ways you can support authors during the pandemic:

  • Purchase a book from your local independent bookstore.
  • Write a review on Goodreads and/or Amazon
  • Post about the book on your social media pages
  • Share book recommendations with family and friends
  • Follow our spring 2020 authors on social media:

Great Plains Publications wouldn’t be here without your support. Thank you!

COVID-19 Update

Great Plains Publications is staying up to date with the recommendations provided by officials during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your health and safety is important to us. Here are the steps we have taken as a company:

As of March 16, all employees of Great Plains Publications have transitioned to working remotely. This ensures we are able to continue serving you while complying with physical distancing guidelines.

The process to submit your manuscripts for consideration is unchanged. Please review our Submit page for details on submissions. 

All of our Spring 2020 book launch events have been postponed indefinitely, however, books are available for purchase as usual, including the new Spring 2020 titles Peculiar Lessons (Lois Braun), Where the Waters Meet (Stéphanie Boulay), You Don’t Have to Die in the End (Anita Daher), and The Automatic Age (GMB Chomichuk). 

Please consider supporting your local indie bookstore, many of which are offering pick-up and delivery options to ensure the safety of you and their staff. McNally Robinson offers next day delivery within Winnipeg and Saskatoon, and low shipping rates within Canada via Canada Post. 

Other ways to support our authors during the pandemic:

We wish you the utmost health, safety, and peace during this trying time. 


Mel, Catharina, and Sam

3 Questions with Winter Willow Author Deborah-Anne Tunney

Winter Willow is Deborah-Anne Tunney’s second book published by Great Plains Publications under the Enfield & Wizenty imprint. Her first, A View from the Lane, was published in 2016. We caught up with her to chat about her writing process, book inspirations, and her advice for aspiring writers.

How did your writing process for Winter Willow differ from The View from the Lane?

For each story in The View from the Lane there is a distinct narrative arc, as there are also various points of view, treatments of time and characters (although many of these characters appear in other stories in the collection). Because the stories are linked, they exist in relation to each other, much how a mosaic, with its distinct stones together create a whole while depending on its parts for clarity.

The novel, Winter Willow, in contrast is fiction on a larger canvas, and therefore the narrative arc is broader, despite there being a series of “fortunes” and “reverse-fortunes” that happens to the protagonist and gives energy to the plot. In short, the novel does not depend on the variety of voices and points of view, but instead draws some of its narrative power from the consistency of voice and time. Each chapter needs to feed the heightened tension demanded by the plot, while also providing a sense of the contained movement that allows it to be exist as a discrete chapter. And so, the challenge for me as the writer was to sustain the vision, that spark that was the impetuses of the work, to keep the writing continually interesting and fresh.

What are some stories you drew inspiration from when writing Winter Willow?

As a young girl I loved the story of ‘Beauty and the Beast’, the idea of the young protagonist alone in a castle exploring, and yet feeling that her true life existed beyond the walls of that palace; this story and others like it held a deep fascination for me. I am reminded also of books I read when I was older, such novels as Rebecca, by Daphne du Maurier, where we see the protagonist trapped in a mansion which is at its heart a mystery, or Charlotte Bronte’s  Jane Eyre. The form is well known and can even be distinguished in movies such as Sunset Boulevard, where the protagonist is a man, but this shift in power makes it no less compelling. 

What I was attempting to accomplish by using the device of the mysterious mansion was to show how a place and a specific time (or in the case of my novel, a specific season) can be looked back upon as the moment the trajectory of a life is known. To see in that moment the time and place when a character – for lack of a better term – grows up and becomes the person they were meant to be. In this way the mystery extends so that is not merely concerned with revealing the secrets of the house, but also with revealing the way character is defined, and can be altered by experience.

What advice can you provide to emerging CanLit writers who are interested in publishing a novel? 

I would say to such a writer that your aim should not be to get published, but to create something of value that bridges your humanity to that of your reader. Nothing less. As Kafka said, a book must be the axe for the frozen sea within us. You should be that ambitious. And if you are successful in this (and also lucky), publishing will be the reward.

That said, I would also tell this writer you need to read, and you need to think while you read how the writer was able to accomplish what they did with only words at their disposal. I’d also suggest they find other writers, people who know the frustrations and the joy of the writing life. This will be your community and a great comfort. You will need them if for no other reason than to know people with whom you can commiserate.

Holiday Gift Guide 2019


Fear not holiday shoppers, our interactive Holiday Gift Guide is here!


We developed this guide to showcase some of our favourite regional and national titles for the casual readers, the coffee table book browsers, and the bibliophiles in your life.


Click on a title or a book cover to read the book description and reviews. All books are available at online and standalone retailers in Canada and the U.S.

Meet the Authors: Fall 2019 Book Launches


Our fall titles are hot off the presses! We’re excited to launch Feral, Winter Willow, Privilege, and Haunted Manitoba at venues across Canada. Listen to the authors read from their new books and be sure to pick up a signed copy. All events are free and open to the public.


Haunted Manitoba by Matthew Komus

Launch: Oct. 29, 7 p.m. at McNally Robinson Booksellers on Grant Ave.

Reading & Signing: Oct. 30, 7 p.m. at Chapters St. Vital

Privilege by Jason Patrick Rothery

The Writers’ Guild of Alberta and Great Plains Publishing Presents: The Author-Editor Experience: Lee Kvern in Conversation with Jason Patrick Rothery – with Social & Celebration Before & After the Formal Program

Wednesday, October 30 | 7:00—10:00pm
Wurst Restaurant | 2437 4th Street SW Calgary, AB
Free for WGA members | $5 optional donation at the door non-members

Feral by Nicole Luiken

Thursday, Nov. 14 | 8:00 p.m. | Audrey’s Books | 10702 Jasper Ave, Edmonton, AB | Free to attend

Winter Willow by Deborah-Anne Tunney

Friday, Dec. 6 | 7:00 p.m. Rockliffe Community Centre | 380 Springfield Road, Ottawa, ON | Free to attend

Fall 2019 Preview: Books as Conversation Starters

A great book is a conversation starter, encouraging you to reflect on the world around you from a fresh perspective. We’re excited to announce our Fall 2019 titles – books you’ll be eager to discuss over the dinner table, in the classroom, and among friends at book club.


FERAL by Nicole Luiken

17-year-old Chloe fears she’s a Dud, a child born to two werewolves who can’t change into a wolf. If she’s still a Dud by the time she reaches adulthood, she’ll be exiled. In the meantime, she’s at the bottom of the pack hierarchy and the other teens in her small town make her life miserable. 

Then she encounters a feral werewolf with the opposite problem: he’s trapped in wolf form. Chloe suspects the feral is her old classmate, Marcus, who everyone believes died along with the rest of his family in a mysterious plane crash.

Chloe vows to help Marcus regain his human self because giving up on him would mean admitting possible failure for herself, too. But she must act quickly. Pack law mandates killing ferals.

Coming Oct. 30



Manitoba may seem like a quiet province, but its prairies teem with paranormal activity.

A ghostly groundskeeper still does his rounds at the Delta Marsh Field Station; strange noises and apparitions of children in 19th-century clothing have been reported at Lower Fort Garry; and Mrs. Kennedy still welcomes guests to Captain Kennedy’s House—just as she did when her home was built in 1866.

Haunted Manitoba shares eerie stories from all corners of the province and places them in the context of Manitoba’s rich history.

Coming Halloween 2019


PRIVILEGE by Jason Patrick Rothery

Privilege is a cutting satire concerning the death spiral of the white, male identity.

With his divorce nearly finalized, the surprise success of his freshman book on the wane, and his ill-advised affair with grad student Lara Kitts put to bed, Dr. Barker Samuel Stone is on the precipice of a cozy tenure-track existence.

Then an enigmatic e-mail sends Barker’s life spiralling along an unanticipated trajectory. Summoned to a late-night confab at the campaign office of controversial mayoral candidate Baz Randell, Barker is looped in on an epic, career-ending scandal.

In the midst of mounting chaos, Barker is informed that an anonymous complainant has levied a claim of sexual misconduct against him. Given the university’s embarrassing record of botching cases of misconduct, Barker is advised that the administration is looking to bring the hammer down on someone – anyone – hard.

In his whole life, Barker has never before felt so much like a nail.

Coming Nov. 1


WINTER WILLOW by Deborah-Anne Tunney

During a winter season in the mid-1970s, unexpected and dramatic events shape the lives of three people living in the mansion, Winter Willow.

Melanie, a young graduate student, is grieving the loss of her mother and main support system when she discovers that her PhD funding has been cancelled. Then she meets Stone, owner of Winter Willow, an old mansion in her neighbourhood, and is offered a position as his personal assistant. Moving in with him during that snowy and isolating season not only creates a strange sleepiness that makes it difficult for Melanie to concentrate on her studies, but also serves to disrupt the life and routine of Stone and his housekeeper, Celeste.

When Melanie begins a relationship with a fellow grad student, she is confronted with the choice between a future with him and her life at Winter Willow. This novel explores the moment when a life can change, the pivot upon which the future depends.

Coming Nov. 15

Summer launches, beach reads, and more!

Upcoming Events


Enfield & Wizenty author Katherine Koller will launch Winning Chance in Calgary on Thursday, July 25 at 1 p.m. at Loft 112. Be sure to attend to hear a reading from the collection and get your copy signed!


Yellow Dog author Monica Nawrocki will be visiting Winnipeg on Aug. 8 to launch her newest book, Cedar Dance, at McNally Robinson. She will be joined by Larry Verstraete (Coop the Great) and Jodi Carmichael (Family of Spies). Join us for a free, fun, family-friendly event!


Manitoba Young Readers Choice Awards


The 2020 MYRCA nominees have been chosen! Yellow Dog titles Coop the Great and Pulse Point were chosen for the Sundogs and Northern Lights categories.


Summer Bucket List Books

image of a beach with a book lying open on the sand

Looking for your next summer read? The collection of stories in Winning Chance is sure to delight. Whether they are contractors running into an ex while on the job, a busy mother pursuing community theatre, or a family building an illegal ice rink after an environmental collapse, Koller’s characters are empathetic portraits of people searching to connect.


Take a trip to your favourite local park and catch up on some history with Assiniboine Park. Discover the park’s past including a merry-go-round, Sabbath observance, and more!

Award Nominations!

The Manitoba Book Awards have released their shortlist! Join us on Friday, May 3rd at the 2019 Manitoba Book Awards Gala as we celebrate Manitoba authors.

More Abandoned Manitoba: Rivers, Rails and Ruins by Gordon Goldsborough

  • Shortlisted for the McNally Robinson Book of the Year Award
  • Shortlisted for the Mary Scorer Award for Best Book by a Manitoba Publisher

Family of Spies: Paris by Jodi Carmichael, design by Relish New Brand Experience, interior illustrations by Jamie Gatta

  • Shortlisted for the Manuela Dias Design and Illustration Award

We’re also pleased to announce that Forgetting How to Breathe by Anita Daher was shortlisted for IODE Violet Downey Book Award

Way to go, Great Plains authors!

New Website, New Staff!

We have a new website! We’ve worked with Relish New Brand on this refresh. If you spot any errors or oddities during your browse, send them to us at marketing@greatplains.mb.ca

Speaking of new arrivals, our Managing Editor Catharina de Bakker has welcomed a new baby girl to her family. We will miss her during her maternity leave, but are delighted to have Irene Bindi join our team to ensure we stay on track. Welcome Irene!

Spring Launches

It’s still cold here in Winnipeg, but the sun is shining longer and we know that spring will be here before we know it!

Mark your calendars for these exciting events:

April 18th – The Light That Remains launches at the the Ottawa Writers Festival

April 20th – The Shadow Over Portage And Main hits the shelves at McNally Robinson

April 24th – Dean Gunnarson: The Making of an Escape Artist, the remarkable story of Dean and his childhood friend, Phil, as they go on a trip to find real, true magic that will save Philip’s life, officially kicks off at McNally Robinson in the atrium. Dean will be there with a few tricks up his sleeve!

Stay tuned for Gatekeeper launch details, coming soon!

ReLit & Bestsellers

We are back from an excellent holiday break. We hope you had the chance to spend quality time with friends and family!

hello sweetheart coverExcellent news for our first 2016 Monday: Hello Sweetheart is on the ReLit Shortlist. This collection from Elaine McCluskey received a strong critical response when it came out, and it’s great to see it now garning attention from the awards. Congratulations, Elaine!

Both Wish You Were Here and From The Barren Lands made it back onto the Bestseller list in Manitoba during the holiday rush, while Madder Carmine popped back on the Edmonton list. If you are still in need of copies, venture out to your local bookstore now that you don’t have to wait in line!

An Award & A Star Review!

Congratulations to Jodi Carmichael and Richard Van Camp, whose books received some fantastic support this past week.

The fall issue of Best Books For Kids & Teens has hit the newsstands and we are thrilled to see Forever Julia as an official selection!

Another important magazine in the world of publishing, Quill & Quire, has published a starred review of Richard Van Camp’s Night Moves. “A book to be absorbed slowly and deliberately, one story at a time, Night Moves is a dark and diverse collection with unforgettable characters, deep wisdom, and painful truths” says reviewer Dana Hansen. Read the full review here.

Strong Start to Fall Season

The fall launch season is underway! Tyler released Madder Carmine in Edmonton and has found his way on to the Bestseller lists in his region, while garnering strong reviews for his crossover fiction title. Richard Van Camp also has great buzz behind Night Moves. Rabble.ca says that “For readers who are familiar with Van Camp’s earlier work, this book is an absolute dream.” Richard launches Night Moves here in Winnipeg at McNally Robinson on Saturday, October 24th.

We are thrilled with how Wish You Were Here, Stan Milosovic’s collection of postcards “From Winnipeg’s Halcyon Days” has turned out. You may have heard Stan on CJOB or CBC’s Up To Speed talking about the book, which launches on October 20th at McNally Robinson. Stan will also be on CTV Morning Live on October 27th.

The results of the Moonbeam Awards are in and two of our Great Plains Teen Fiction titles were selected. Jodi Carmichael’s Forever Julia received the bronze medal in the Mature Issues category, while Guardian by Natasha Deen received the bronze in the Fantasy/Sci-Fi category. Congratulations Jodi and Natasha!

Fall Launches Set!

24430-From_the_Barren_Lands_Cover_v2.inddThe morning air is crisper in Winnipeg this week, and thus our first reminder about the coming fall is upon us. It’s always sad to see summer come to an end, but we are excited to launch our fall titles in October!  Mark your calendars.

October 8 – Madder Carmine by Tyler Enfield launches at Audreys Books in Edmonton.

October 20 – Stan Milosevic’s Wish You Were Here launches at McNally Robinson in Winnipeg.

October 24 – Night Moves, Richard Van Camp’s newest collection of short stories, celebrates a Winnipeg launch at McNally.

November 5 – Leonard G. Flett’s much anticipated memoir From The Barren Lands kicks off in Winnipeg at McNally.

We have decided to shift the launch of Carolyn Gray’s Dean Gunnarson: The Making Of An Escape Artist to be our feature non-fiction title of the Spring 2016 list.

Win a signed copy of Daytripper’s!

Daytrippers FinalWin a signed copy of A Daytripper’s Guide To Manitoba!

Great Plains Publications wants you to get out and discover all that Manitoba has to offer! Take a photo of yourself exploring a path or attraction in Manitoba, then tweet it, facebook it or send it out on instagram with the hashtag #daytrippersGuideMB.

On August 4th, we will draw three winners to receive a signed copy of Bartley Kives’ A Daytripper’s Guide To Manitoba, which has been on the Bestsellers list since it’s release this spring!

Q&Q and Best Books!

guardian_coverOur spring titles have launched! As expected, A Daytrippers’ Guide To Manitoba and On The Air are on top of the Bestsellers lists at McNally Robinson again. Bartley and Garry will be signing books across the city in the lead up to Father’s Day. We’ll be posting the schedule on our Facebook page shortly. Check it out to get a signed copy for dad!

Adam Lindsay Honsigner’s Gracelessland received a glowing review from Quill & Quire. Add “a novel that feels fresh, rich, and heavy with the thrum of life” to your summer reading list!

We are also thrilled to announce that Natasha Deen’s Guardian has been selected as a Best Book. Natasha is working on the follow-up title to this “great hybrid of horror and mystery (think Buffy the Vampire Slayer meets Veronica Mars), with oodles of potential for humour and terror.”  (Quill & Quire). We can’t wait to find out what happens to Maggie and Serge!


Spring Books are off!

GP_Gracelessland_cover_NEWThe sun is shining, the plants are blooming, and our authors are launching! Yes, spring is officially here.

Jodi Carmichael kicked off the release of Forever Julia with a standing-room-only launch event in McNally Robinson’s Atrium. Since then, she’s received an excellent review from The Winnipeg Free Press (“This is a young writer to watch”), and is garnering glowing feedback on her current blog tour (follow her adventures on her website).

Richard Cumyn also had a successful launch in Kingston for his collection of novellas, Famous Last Meals. Kathleen Winter calls this collection “a cross between Maurice Dekobra and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.”

This week will see the launch of Gracelessland, our first Enfield & Wizenty novel since Méira Cook’s stunning The House On Sugarbush Road.  Adam Lindsay Honsinger’s coming of age, anti-hero mental hospital adventure had us glued to the page and we can’t wait to see what the rest of Canada thinks about this outstanding young writer!

Additional May launches include A Daytripper’s Guide to Manitoba, a completely revised edition from Bartley Kives, and On The Air: The Golden Age of Manitoba Radio by Garry Moir.  Both authors are booking media interviews and author signings already!

Ready, Set, Launch!

March is coming to an end and that means we are headed into launch season here at Great Plains! We are proud of the eclectic mix of titles on our spring list. Mark the dates below in your calendar to meet the authors behind the titles and pick up a signed copy for your collection!

April 16th – Forever Julia by Jodi Carmichael (McNally Robinson, Winnipeg, 7pm)

Apirl 28th – Famous Last Meals by Richard Cumyn (Novel Idea Bookstore, Kingston, 7pm)

May 7th – Gracelessland by Adam Lindsay Honsinger (Ben McNally Bookstore, Toronto, 6pm)

May 9th – A Daytripper’s Guide to Manitoba by Bartley Kives (McNally Robinson, Winnipeg, 7pm)

May 12th – On The Air by Gary Moir (McNally Robinson, Winnipeg, 7pm)

Do you have questions about any of the launches above? Simply email our Marketing Director, Mel Marginet, at marketing@greatplains.mb.ca.


forever_julia_p2 (1)Our launch events for the Spring 2015 list are over a month away, but author Jodi Carmichael’s Forever Julia is already garnering some buzz.  The novel, published under our Great Plains Teen Fiction imprint but also highly suitable for the New Adult genre, centres on Julia, the girlfriend of high school superstar, Jeremy.  When Jeremy’s feelings for Julia become obsessive, isolating her from her friends and family, she alone must decide what boundaries cannot be crossed.

The timely novel was part of Tara-Michelle Ziniuk’s article, A Delicate Balance, in the spring edition of Quill & Quire.  Ms. Ziniuk interviewed Jodi along with two additional authors of teen fiction tackling the touch issues of sexual assault and abusive relationships in their novels.  Grab this issue of Quill & Quire today!

Jodi begins a blog tour with Chapter by Chapter on April 27th, has an interview upcoming in Prairie Books Now and is getting set for her launch event at McNally Robinson on April 16th.  Congratulations on this early success, Jodi.  2015 is sure to be an exciting year as Forever Julia hits bookshelves across the country!

Spring List

GP_Gracelessland_cover_NEWIt may still be January, but we are in the midst of designing, printing and promoting our spring titles. We have a novel from an exciting new author set to launch in Toronto in early May. Our last novel under Enfield & Wizenty, The House On Sugarbush Road, won the Book of the Year Award among numerous honours, and we have been combing our submissions for the next novel to release under our E&W imprint.  Adam Lindsay Honsinger’s Gracelessland arrived with a quirky narrator and a glowing blurb from Annabel Lyon, and we are thrilled to hit the print button on a book that has everyone here at Great Plains Publications buzzing.

Visit the New Titles section of our website to find out more about all of our titles set to hit bookshelves this spring.  It’s never too early to plan that summer reading list!

New Year, New Representation

Happy New Year!

Great Plains Publications is ringing in 2015 by moving to new sales representation and book distribution.  We are thrilled that Rorie Bruce will still be representing our titles locally, but he is now part of the Publishers Group Canada team which will be handling our representation from coast to coast.  Distribution will be through Raincoast.

Great Plains Publications is committed to bringing readers the best Canadian fiction and non-fiction.  By shifting our sales representation and book distribution, our goal is to have our titles on more bookstore shelves across Canada.  If you have any questions about this move, please feel free to contact us.  We look forward to announcing launch dates for our spring titles in the coming weeks!

Happy Holidays!

GPP 2014 201Happy Holidays from the dogs here at Great Plains Publications! Scout and Trish have had a fabulous year publishing such great titles and marketing them from coast to coast!  Joining Scout and Trish in sending good cheer to you and yours is Gregg Shilliday, Ingeborg Boyens, Catharina de Bakker and Mel Marginet.

Congratulations to Natasha Deen, who received an extra special gift for the holidays: a wonderful review of her novel, Guardian.

“Any novel which has what appears to be a dead body in the trunk of the protagonist’s car on the very first page is bound to be a page-turner … this mix of mystery and fantasy in Guardian is unusual, perhaps, but effective.

Highly recommended.” – CM Magazine

Thank you for making 2014 such a success here at Great Plains Publications. We look forward to bringing more great titles to you in the new year!

National Reviews

All of our fall 2hello sweetheart cover014 books have launched and it’s great to see our authors receiving positive reviews across the country.  Elaine McCluskey’s Hello, Sweetheart was reviewed by Steven W. Beattie in the National Post this week and he says,

“The stories in Hello, Sweetheart are barbed and frequently sardonic – one of the best of them, “Two Truths and a Lie,” contains a twist in the tail that owes more to Roald Dahl than the kind of story Barthelme was referencing.But McCluskey also threads a vein of compassion through the collection; these are not satires, and no matter how desperate the characters are, they are always presented with a tone of empathetic understanding. “People can be wretched, you know,” McCluskey writes in “XOXO,” and though the stories in Hello, Sweetheart go some way to bearing out this thesis, they also remind their reader of the humanity that lies just beneath the wretchedness.”

guardian_coverMeanwhile our latest teen fiction release, Guardian, has a glowing review in the December 2014 edition of Quill & Quire.  Charis Cotter says that this first installment of Deen’s latest series is “a great hybrid of horror and mystery (think Buffy the Vampire Slayer meets Veronica Mars), with oodles of potential for humour and terror – and Deen gets the most out of both.”   Ms. Cotter goes on to note “underneath all the fun, Deen has something important to say about bullying, and how understanding and compassion can lead to forgiveness.”

Congratulations to all of our authors on their success. We hope you consider all of the titles on our list this holiday season!

Jan Andrews makes Forest short list

9781926531687 - compressedGreat Plains Teen Fiction is honoured to announce that Jan Andrews has been shortlisted for the Ontario Library Association’s Forest of Reading prize.  Jan’s novel, The Silent Summer of Kyle McGinley, is one of 10 novels selected from across the country for the White Pine Award.

The Silent Summer of Kyle McGinley is written from the point of view of Kyle, a young teen who finds himself at the novel’s start moving into his latest in a long line of foster homes.  He takes a vow of silence – if no one listens, what’s the point of talking?  But during his first summer on Scott and Jill’s farm, with the help of a crow, a swamp and some black paint, Kyle wonders if maybe his life could be better.

Congratulations Jan!


Fall List Launches

Our fall list is hittingguardian_cover the shelves!

You can find our Enfield & Wizenty titles (Hello, Sweetheart and The View From The Lane) at your favourite local shop now (if it hasn’t arrived yet, be sure to request a copy to ensure the store has placed their order.)  Natasha Deen’s spooky teen novel, Guardian, has also left the presses.

Mark your calendars for these launches in a city near you!

October 29th – Matthew Komus launches Haunted Winnipeg in McNally Robinson, while Elaine McCluskey launches Hello, Sweetheart in Dartmouth at the Banook Canoe Club.

October 30th – Deborah-Anne Tunney launches The View From The Lane at The Cube Gallery in Ottawa.

November 12th – Mike On Crime launches at McNally Robinson. Don’t miss your chance to meet Mike McIntyre and hear about his 20 years covering crime in Canada.

Natasha Deen is busy touring to schools across Alberta over the next few months.  To find out where she is headed, or to learn more about the launches above, please email marketing@greatplains.mb.ca.

On The Same Page

OTSPShortListGreat Plains Publications once again has a title on the short list for On The Same Page Manitoba.  Stuck In The Middle: Dissenting Views of Winnipeg is in the running to be chosen as Manitoba’s next Book Club pick.  The public is encouraged to vote for their choice between now and September 15th.  On September 11th, excerpts from all of the books will be read at McNally Robinson on Grant.

On The Same Page is an initiative of The Winnipeg Foundation and Winnipeg Public Library, and encourages all Manitobans to read, and talk about, the same book at the same time.  Congratulations Bartley Kives and Bryan Scott! 

Black Bottle Man On Stage

9781894283991Craig Russell’s celebrated novel, Black Bottle Man, has been adapted for the stage.

You can catch the production at 2 or 8 PM on August 30th at the Bernie Theatre in Winnipeg (123 Doncaster Street). Tickets are $15 and available now at McNally Robinson Booksellers on Grant Avenue.

Black Bottle Man was released in 2010 and went on to both win and be shortlisted for numerous awards. Catch this review of the novel from the CBC!  An MTS Documentary is also in the works. Congratulations Craig on the continuing success of this beloved novel for teens!

Exciting Fall List

HauntedWpg_cover_v2While we are enjoying summer here at Great Plains, fall is on our mind.  We have strong list of books set to hit the shelves of your favourite local shop!

Crime writer Mike McIntyre looks back at his 20 years covering the beat while historian Matt Komus is set to spook us with tales from the heart of the continent.  Ghosts are also haunting our Teen Fiction imprint with a sharp novel from Natasha Deen.  Enfield & Wizenty will publish short story collections from two fine literary writers, Deborah-Anne Tunney and Elaine McCluskey .

See all of our Fall 2014 titles right here on our website and in our Fall 2014 catalogue!

Chistopher Dafoe in Winnipeg to launch In Search of Canada

Christopher Dafoe Christopher Dafoe returns to Winnipeg to launch In Search of Canada: The Early Years of John Wesley Dafoe at McNally Robinson on June 26th.  The book was reviewed in the June 21st edition of the Winnipeg Free Press by Gerald Flood, who notes that “In Chris’ able hands [the biography] never reads like history. Rather, it reads, as [Chris] intended, as the story of a remarkable young man who accomplished greatness”.

Join us at 7pm for the launch of this exciting biography of one of Canada’s most iconic journalists!

Congratulations to John Toone, whose comic guide-book, Fishin’ For Dumbasses, has been a steady feature on the McNally Robinson Bestsellers list since its launch in May!

Alberta Bestsellers!







Not just one but two Great Plains titles are currently bestsellers in Alberta! Edmonton authors Gail Sidonie Sobat and Spyder Yardley-Jones launched their graphic novel Jamie’s Got a Gun at the Roxy Theatre in Edmonton last month. Fans of Alberta author Lee Kvern’s 7 Ways to Sunday can catch the author at Cafe Books in Canmore on Wednesday, June 11th and at Sunworks Home and Garden in Red Deer on Friday, June 20.

Strong reviews and nominations for Great Plains Authors

Spring has finally sprung in Manitoba, and our latest releases have been garnering strong reviews.

Pickle Me This says Lee Kvern’s 7 Ways To Sunday is “wild instead of farmed, 20-some years of stories gathered together for the first time instead of a carefully curated collection … I loved this book, hooked by the first story.”  7 Ways to Sunday was the #1 fiction bestseller in Calgary last week, and Lee is on the road promoting the book. Check out one of her events near you!

lockdown_cover largeFirst-time author Maggie Bolitho has launched Lockdown, and a glowing review of the book is already in!  “I would give this story a two-thumbs-up and highly recommend it for teens as well as adults … There’s just the right mix of suspense and action that keeps the reader barreling along at break-neck speed” says Susan Rocan on her blog, MyWithershins.

The Manitoba Young Readers’ Choice Awards have been announced, and Morven and the Horse Clan by Luanne Armstrong has made the shortlist.  We are entering the second printing of this novel released in the fall of 2013.  Get your copy today!

Finally, our spring releases continue! John Toone’s Fishin’ For Dumbasses: Tips for folks who want to catch their own food (and have fun doing it!) launches  Wednesday, May 14th at McNally Robinson in the restaurant at 8 pm. We’re told fish will be on the menu, so get down to Prairie Ink Cafe early to enjoy a delicious pre-launch meal!

Great Plains Authors take home prizes

The Manitoba Book Awards were held on April 27th at the West End Cultural Centre, and our Great Plains authors and designers did not leave empty handed!

The Carol Shields Winnipeg Book Award honours a book that evokes a special character of and appreciation for Winnipeg, and we were delighted to see Bartley Kives and Bryan Scott’s Stuck in the Middle win this prize.  Bryan’s iconic photography paired with Bartley’s sharp writing “present a portarit of Winnipeg that is at once damningly honest and brazenly flattering” (jury comments).

300 Years of Beer took home the prize for Best Illustrated Book of the Year.  With over 400 illustrations (and some artwork that was over 100 years old), Great Plains sends a well deserved congratulations to Bill Wright and Dave Craig as well as the talented team at Relish New Brand Experience.

Colleen Nelson’s The Fall “takes us into a revealing world of confusion and suffering as a handful of teenagers try to deal with the death of a friend.”  As a middle-school teacher, Colleen witnessed the students in her class tackle the grief and trauma after their classmate died tragically, and she channeled this experience into the writing of her second novel. Great Plains Teen Fiction was thrilled to see Colleen win her second McNally Robinson Book for Young People Award!

Great Plains Publications thanks the jurors, event organizers and sponsors of the Manitoba Book Awards for a wonderful night celebrating Manitoba writing and publishing. Congratulations to all of the nominees and award recipients!

7 Ways to Sunday Launches!

7WaysCoverfinal27 Ways to Sunday launches at 7pm on Tuesday, April 15th at the Memorial Park Library in Calgary, Alberta. Guests are invited to wear their best bathrobes!

Lee Kvern’s much-anticipated new collection contains stories which revolve around humanity in all its flawed glory: an artist’s girlfriend dies by mistake; a mother holds surveillance on her son’s foray into drugs; a sibling’s jealousy toward her sickly brother; a father’s death; a mother’s fear for her unbridled, grade two son; a woman with a hijab in the modern world of Save-on groceries. An arborist, his wife and a Shar-Pei are in need of an attitude adjustment; a dying senior looks back over her life, her children, her lost love; RCMP and prostitutes come for tea on a Wednesday afternoon.

From the heartbreaking to hilarious, Lee Kvern has amassed a remarkable collection.

Manitoba Book Awards

9781926531717The nominees for the Manitoba Book Awards have been announced and we are thrilled to see multiple Great Plains titles on the shortlist!

300 Years of Beer, penned by local beer aficionados Bill Wright and Dave Craig, is up for three awards.  The illustrated history is up for the Best Illustrated Book of the Year, the Manuela Dias Book Design of the Year, and the Mary Scorer Award for Best Book by a Manitoba Publisher.  Bartley Kives and Bryan Scott’s hit Stuck in the Middle is shortlisted for the Carol Shields Winnipeg Book Award. The Fall by Colleen Nelson is up for the McNally Robinson Book for Young People Award.  We hope to see Colleen as the two-time winner of this category (her first novel, Tori By Design, received the award in 2012)!

You can find all of the nominees on the Manitoba Writer’s Guild website.  The Awards Ceremony takes place Sunday, April 27th at the West End Cultural Centre.  Congratulations to all of those nominated for the Manitoba Book Awards!


Jan Andrews is on the CLA Shortlist

9781926531687 - compressedThe Canadian Library Association has announced the shortlist for the Young Adult Book Award, and we are delighted to see The Silent Summer of Kyle McGinley in this list of top 10 books.

The CLA Young Adult Book Award recognizes the author of an outstanding English-language Canadian work of fiction for readers age 13 to 18.  Great Plains Teen Fiction sends congratulations to Jan Andrews and to all of the 2014 nominees. Bravo!

Stuck back in Stock

bryan-bart1-smStuck in the Middle has been flying off the shelves of bookstores across Manitoba!  Just a month after its release a reprint order was placed, and we are delighted to announce it is back in stock.  Pick up your copy at your local bookstore today!

Our authors have been busy throughout the fall signing their books.  Just a few signing remain before the holiday break. If you would like a signed copy of Colleen Nelson’s The Fall, she will be at McNally Robinson on Sunday, December 15th.  In the store that day as well are Bill Wright and Dave Craig with 300 Years of Beer.  You can still get a signed copy of Stuck in the Middle for the holidays – Bartley Kives and Bryan Scott will be in McNally Robinson on Saturday, December 14th and at the Forks Trading Company on December 21st.

Friend.Follow.Text garnering media buzz


Enfield & Wizenty’s Friend.Follow.Text. #storiesFromLivingOnline is a short fiction anthology that explores the intersection between social media and literature.  Edited by Shawn Syms, the collection features writers from across Canada and the United States. Released just last month, Friend. Follow. Text. has already grabbed the attention of literary critics and readers. The book is available at fine book stores everywhere, and (of course!) as an ebook.

The Chicago Tribune printed a review in their weekend edition, which you can check out here!

“The use of social media allows for interesting structural choices with pieces using message board posts, IM conversations or Instagram photos to push the stories forward.” —  Courtney Crowder, Chicago Tribune

“An impressive collection, with a number of stunning stories.” — Robert J. Wiersma,Quill & Quire

“A comprehensive exploration of all things online… For anyone striving to make sense of the experiences of ‘living online,’ Friend Follow Text is worth picking up.”
— Andrea Routley, Plenitude Magazine

“Stories inspired by… social media — tweets, emails, blogs, Facebook updates and the like…There is fun and novelty to be had.”
— Sarah Murdoch, Toronto Star

“The inventive forms share experiences a majority of people relate to today… For those of us who use social media all the time, and those who would rather stay away, there is at least one piece to strike anyone’s chord.”
— Kristen Nathan, Chicago Literati

Stuck in the Middle launches November 3rd!

 width=A new book featuring photographs from Bryan Scott (Winnipeg Love Hate) and text by Bartley Kives (Winnipeg Free Press, A Daytripper’s Guide to Manitoba) launches on Sunday, November 3rd in the McNally Robinson Atrium.

Stuck in the Middle: Dissenting Views of Winnipeg finds Bryan and Bartley exploring the geography, design and reputation of the only city they have ever truly known, loved and hated! Be sure to attend the launch to get signed copies of the book just in time for the holiday season.

Bryan and Bartley are in the midst of a media blitz: see them on Breakfast Television here!

Silent Summer wins Moonbeam Gold Medal

9781926531687 - compressedThe Silent Summer of Kyle McGinley by Jan Andrews has been selected as a Gold Medal winner by the Moonbeam Awards.  Launched in 2007, the awards are intended to bring increased recognition to exemplary children’s books and their creators, and to celebrate children’s books and life-long reading.

Kyle McGinley doesn’t say a word. Fed up with being shuttled from one foster care home to another, he has stopped speaking.  But at the home of Scott and Jill Wardman, with the help of a crow, a swamp, and an excess of black paint, he begins to think that maybe, just maybe, life could be better.

As long as his frigging dad doesn’t mess things up.

Congratulations Jan!



The Lucky Ones selected for On the Same Page

LuckyOnes_cover_finalAnne Mahon’s The Lucky Ones has been selected as the feature title in the On The Same Page initiative.

On The Same Page, a program sponsored by The Winnipeg Foundation and the Winnipeg Public Library, encourages all Manitobans to read and talk about the same book at the same time.  Congratulations Anne!

We also send congratulations out to our own Méira Cook as well as Eva Wiseman, David Robertson and Scott B. Henderson whose books were also shortlisted.

Thin Air

WIFW_Banner_2013Thin Air 2013 is just around the corner!

The Winnipeg International Writers Festival is 9 days of readings, discussions, performances, panels and – of course – great conversation.  You’ve probably seen the paperback guide around town in coffee shops, bookstores, universities and other places. Pick one up!

Two of our Great Plains Teen Fiction authors will be taking part – Jan Andrews and Colleen Nelson.  Jan and Colleen both released books this spring and are eager to connect with audiences and writers from around the world.  Both Jan and Colleen will be reading from their books (The Silent Summer of Kyle McGinley and The Fall) on Monday, September 23rd at the North Y Youth Centre. Find out more here.

On Tuesday, Jan will be part of two events. At 10 am she can be found at MTYP as part of the School Stage, and then at 4:30 she will be at the Millennium Library to speak about foster parenting as part of the Big Ideas series.

Aside from reading with Jan on Monday, Colleen Nelson will be part of the Voices from Oodena event on Sunday, September 22nd along with Robert Malo, David McLeod, John K Samson and John Weirer.

Be sure to catch Jan and Colleen at this year’s THIN AIR festival!

Teen Fiction Authors in the news

Our Great Plains Teen Fiction authors are keeping busy!

Colleen NelsonColleen Nelson was interviewed by Shaw TV here in Winnipeg about her new novel, The Fall. The clip will be airing on the station shortly, but you can get a sneak-peek here!

The Silent Summer of Kyle McGinley continues to garner great reviews.  The latest praise comes from Canadian Children’s Book News: “With his well-placed sarcasm and keen observations, Kyle is an authentic teen character that we immediately identify with.”  

Gail Sidonie Sobat’s Chance to Dance for You was part of Heather Milne’s review essay Isolation, Exploration, Affirmation: Dominant Patterns in Four Books for Gay Teens in the latest edition of Jeunesse.  She statesChance to Dance for You is a timely book in its focus on social media and technology as sites of bullying for gay teens, a topic that has been in the news of late due to a proliferation of highly publicized teen suicides and the popularity of the “It Gets Better” campaign, which attempts to offer a sense of hope to depressed and isolated teenagers.”

Visit a bookstore near you to pick up copies of these titles today!

New for Kindle

authorNaomi Lewis’ I Know Who You Remind Me Of is now available on Kindle!  This celebrated collection of short stories was the winner of the 2012 Colophon Prize and Finalist for the 2013 Georges Bugnet Award for Fiction.

“Flowing seamlessly from the tragic to the hilarious, the nine unusual tales set mainly in Canadian cities, are eccentric and original.” – Winnipeg Free Press

Get your copy on Amazon, or the product page on this website!

Another strong review for THE FALL!

thefall (2)Colleen Nelson’s The Fall continues to garner praise from critics across the country.  The latest review comes from Resource Links:

“[Nelson] brings her careful sense of observation to bear on the development of her story and characters … a central theme that is highly topical is the misinformation Cory spreads about Ben on Facebook after the accident.  More than just his own sense of guilt and sorrow, Ben has to deal with escalating persecution from Cory and the entire school population.”

We are delighted to hear that Colleen Nelson will join Jan Andrews (author of The Silent Summer of Kyle McGinley) as a part of Thin Air this September. This International Writer’s Festival will feature many fantastic literary events – more details to come!

On the same page

Great Plains Publications and Enfield & Wizenty are delighted to announce that both Méira Cook’s The House on Sugarbush Road and Anne Mahon’s The Lucky Ones have been selected as part of the On The Same Page shortlist.

On The Same Page, a project supported by The Winnipeg Foundation and the Winnipeg Public Library, encourages all Manitobans to read, and talk about, the same book at the same time.  Vote for your favourite here today and throughout the summer!

Great Plains in the media

The Fall by Colleen Nelson was featured in the Winnipeg Free Press’ Books section on June 15th.

“[Colleen Nelson] has a sharp ear for authentic dialogue … The dragons Ben faces are gangs, drugs and alcohol, but they are just as real and much more menacing than medieval monsters.  Teens will relate to many things in this novel.”

Read the full review here – and be sure to pick up your copy!

You may have seen Bill Wright and Dave Craig in the news this past week.  Their non-fiction release, 300 Years of Beer, has generated much media attention across the province.  Connect with Bill and Dave on Facebook and Twitter to find out more about this exciting local release!

Richard Van Camp on The Next Chapter

Richard Van Camp was interviewed by Shelagh Roger’s on CBC Radio’s The Next Chapter.

Listen to the interview now to hear about Richard’s writing process and how his Dogrib (Tlicho) background and his love for the north influence his writing. Also hear how he describes Enfield & Wizenty editor Maurice Mierau as a “warrior poet!”

The Lesser Blessed, based on Richard’s novel, is now playing at The Globe theatre in Winnipeg. Read the glowing review from the Winnipeg Free Press here!

300 Years of Beer launches June 6th at McNally Robinson

Just in time for Father’s Day, Great Plains Publications has released a new book on Manitobans’ favourite summer pastime. 300 Years of Beer: An Illustrated History of Brewing in Manitoba covers all aspects of beer-making and beer-drinking in this province.

Join Bill Wright and Dave Craig for the launch of 300 Years of Beer at McNally Robinson on June 6th at 7pm. Don’t be late – specially labelled bottles of Fort Garry are on hand for the first 60 guests who arrive!

Wondering about the Manitoba roots of Budweiser’s famous team of Clydesdales? Curious about the long history of Standard Lager? Want to know the origin of Half Pints’ unusual name? All this and much more can be found in 300 Years of Beer: An Illustrated History of Brewing in Manitoba.

Richard Van Camp wins Georges Bugnet Award for Fiction!

Enfield & Wizenty author Richard Van Camp took home the Georges Bugnet Award for Fiction at the Alberta Literary Awards for his collection of short stories Godless But Loyal to Heaven. Congratulations Richard!

Also shortlisted in the same category was I Know Who You Remind Me Of by Naomi Lewis. We are delighted to see our authors recognized for their fantastic work. Read about the awards in the Edmonton Journal.

In Richard Van Camp’s fictionalized north anything can happen and yet each story is rooted in a vivid contemporary reality. The stories offer a potent mix tape of tropes from science fiction, horror, Western and Aboriginal traditions. The title story pits Torchy against the Smith Squad, fighting for love and family in a bloody, cathartic, and ultimately hopeful narrative. Van Camp’s characters repeatedly confront the bleakness of sexual assault, substance addiction and violence with the joy and humour of inspired storytelling.

Both books are available at fine bookstores everywhere!

Best Books for Kids & Teens 2013

We are excited to announce that Gail Sidonie Sobat’s Chance to Dance for You was picked as a starred selection in the Spring 2013 edition of Best Books for Kids & Teens.  Congratulations Gail!

Sometimes keeping a secret is harder than telling the truth.

Ian lives in a suburb where everything’s the same. The houses are the same, the cars are the same, and their aspirations are the same. But Ian is different. Openly gay in his bigoted high school, Ian doesn’t exactly fit in. But he’s not worried – he’s been training in dance for a long time and soon he’ll be able to leave town and train to become a professional. Then he falls in love with Jess, the high school quarterback…

A launch and a great review!

More exciting news here at Great Plains Publications!

Our spring YA titles continue to shine, with a fantastic review of The Fall just in from CM Magazine:

“The theme of how grief is handled by men and boys permeates this novel and makes it a must-read for teachers and older teens, both boys and girls. The physical and emotional absence of men in the novel’s demographic will raise many passionate discussions, but it is the boys’ pain and grief that will engage students who will have strong opinions on the issues raised in this timely Canadian novel.”
— Highly recommended, CM Magazine


May 7, Anne Mahon’s The Lucky Ones: African Refugees’ Stories of Extraordinary Courage launches at McNally Robinson at 7 pm.  Storytellers from the novel will be present and some will read.  We are excited to hear that Lloyd Axworthy will also take part, reading a story submitted by “Anonymous.”  Excerpts of the novel have been featured in the Winnipeg Free Press and on CBC.  We hope to see you there!

Méira Cook and Kevin Marc Fournier take home big prizes at the Manitoba Book Awards

The Manitoba Book Awards were handed out in front of a full house at the West End Cultural Centre, and Enfield & Wizenty is delighted to announce that Méira Cook’s The House on Sugarbush Road took home the McNally Robinson Book of the Year.  In the McNally Robinson Book for Young People category, Kevin Marc Fournier’s The Green-Eyed Queen of Suicide City published by Great Plains Teen Fiction, was named the winner.

Congratulations Méira and Kevin!


Two titles up for the Alberta Literary Awards

We are delighted to announce that two of our Enfield & Wizenty titles have been shortlisted for the Georges Bugnet Award for Fiction as part of the Alberta Literary Awards.


“Full of sympathy and hilarity, the absurd and the unexpected, I Know Who You Remind Me Of is a treat to read.” – Saleema Nawaz

“From its title onward, the debut story collection by Naomi K. Lewis is about forging a future in order to spite one’s past.” – The Edmonton Journal


“Hard-nosed but thin-skinned, sturdy yet totally off the wall, Richard Van Camp’s Godless but Loyal to Heaven is such a vibrant story collection that I’m kicking myself for only getting around to it now” – Edmonton Journal

“Gripping, graphic and insightful, Godless but Loyal to Heaven opens up the human heart and lets the reader watch it pumping. Van Camp slips in and out of characters like a shapeshifter, introducing poetry and the fantastic into a brutal landscape” — Eden Robinson, author of Monkey Beach


Congratulations to all of the nominees!

“Highly recommended” – Fantastic review for Jan Andrews!

We are excited to announce that our spring season is off to a strong start here at Great Plains, with Jan Andrews’ THE SILENT SUMMER OF KYLE MCGINLEY receiving a glowing review from CM Magazine.

“Andrews has created a character with whom young readers will have empathy, with whom they will laugh and cry, and someone they will not soon forget.”

Read the full review here.

Authors Nominated For Manitoba Book Awards!

Happy as flying frogs around here today, after we got the word that three GP books have been nominated in multiple categories for the Manitoba Book Awards!

The House on Sugarbush Road by Meira Cook, Green-eyed Queen of Suicide City by Kevin Marc Fournier, and I Know Who You Remind Me Of by Naomi K. Lewis, have all been short-listed in their categories. To read the complete  list, click here.  Here’s the low-down on the talented crew of E & W and Great Plains Teen Fiction:

The House on Sugarbush Road by Meira Cook has been nominated in two categories: McNally Robinson Book of the Year, and The Margaret Laurence Award for Fiction.


Green-eyed Queen of Suicide City by Kevin Marc Fournier has been nominated twice: McNally Robinson Book for Young People, and Fournier for the John Hirsch Award for Most Promising Manitoba Writer.

I Know Who You Remind Me Of by Naomi K. Lewis, has been nominated for Manuela Dias Book Design of the Year, design by Relish New Brand Experience, of Winnipeg.


Congratulations to all our authors!


Eerie Coincidence of Space and Story

The stories in author Naomi K. Lewis’ tremendous collection, I Know Who You Remind Me Of have been called “raw,” and “luscious” and “first rate.”

We’ve discovered recently that “eerie” can be added to those accolades. A novella-length feature in the popular collection is called “Attachment.” It’s  the hilarious and poignant story of sisters Bonnie and Blythe and their long-standing rivalry. It’s also the story of a soft drink company that would like to put someone in space, sponsored by Bottle Rock-it Soda Pop. Does this sound familiar, perhaps like a recent ad campaign? Embrace the eerie, here.

Starred Review

You’ll have to pick up a copy of this month’s Quill & Quire magazine. E & W author, Meira Cook’s new novel, The House on Sugarbush Road has been given a starred review! As soon as the article is available online, we’ll post it. But of course, we recommend you buy a copy of the book and the magazine. And if you can’t get enough of all things Meira, make sure you pick up this month’s issue of Contemporary Verse 2, the special Winnipeg edition, and check out Meira’s poetry. Also featured in the special issue is E &W editor and poet, Maurice Mierau. Old home week.

Richard Van Camp, Newsmaker of the Year!

Enfield & Wizenty are happy to announce that our own Richard Van Camp, author of Godless but Loyal to Heaven has been named the Northern Journal’s Newsmaker of the Year for 2012. The photo of Richard with a campfire behind him is priceless, as is his declaration, “This is what I was born to do!” We agree with that! Congratulations to Richard! Read the full article here.

New Managing Editor

With Catharina deBakker on maternity leave, those particularly large shoes are being filled quite nicely by Mel Marginet.

Mel is a graduate of the University of Winnipeg’s Honours program for Theatre and Film and is the co-founder and Artistic Head of Theatre by the River.  Selected stage credits include Lungs, Generous, Saint Joan, One Good Marriage, Oedipus Rex and The Skriker (with little ECHO theatre). You can catch her on screen in Aegrie Somnia and season two of Less Than Kind.  She is the former event coordinator for the YMCA-YWCA Women of Distinction Awards and currently serves on the Steering Committee for the 2013 gala. An avid reader, Mel is delighted to be a part of the Great Plains Publications team!

Welcome Mel!

New Years Wishes from Great Plains/Enfield & Wizenty Authors

Great Plains would like to wish everyone the very best for 2013! With all the affection and sentiment of the season, our authors offer their greatest wishes for now, tomorrow and all the year to come!


I wish for a tolerant world.

— Noni Campbell-Horner, author of Red River Remembered, A Bicentennial Collection of Stories and Recipes



Continue reading “New Years Wishes from Great Plains/Enfield & Wizenty Authors”

Great Plains Teen Fiction Authors on Best Books List

Cape Town by Brenda Hammond and How to Tend a Grave by Jocelyn Shipley, two wonderful YA books from Great Plains Teen Fiction, have found their way on to the CCBC’s Best Books for Kids & Teens 2012 list! We’re thrilled of course to be included on this list from the Canadian Children’s Book Centre, but not at all surprised! Both books have been causing excitement in the YA world since released last Spring. Way to go, Brenda and Jocelyn! If you’d like to order either of these books from Great Plains directly, go to “New Titles” and click on the cover! Happy Holiday … Happy Holiday … while the merry bells keep ringing …

Sean Grassie signs copies of Kings of the Rings

If you missed the launch, Sean Grassie is back at McNally Robinson Booksellers, Grant Park to sign copies of his new book Kings of the Rings, 125 Years of the World’s Biggest Bonspiel Saturday, December 8, at 2 pm. Kings of the Rings is a comprehensive history of Winnipeg’s own MCA Bonspiel, 125 years running! See what the Winnipeg Free Press Sports page says about the book.

Méira Cook and Nerys Parry read at McNally Robinson

Join Méira Cook and Nerys Parry at McNally Robinson Booksellers in Winnipeg at 7:30, October 22nd for readings from their latest work. Cook, whose debut novel The House on Sugarbush Road was published by Enfield & Wizenty earlier this fall, has just won The Walrus magazine’s poetry prize. Parry’s  Man and Other Natural Disasters is a Prairie contender for CBC Canada Reads.


Our YA editor Anita Daher is announcing some fun contests and exciting giveaways from Great Plains Publications.  Don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter so you don’t miss out!

Manitoba Day Award

The Association for Manitoba Archives has awarded one of the 6th annual Manitoba Day Awards to Joe Mackintosh for his book Andy De Jarlis, The Life and Music of an Old-Time Fiddler.  Congratulations Joe!  A good time for the Red River Jig!

and away!

Great Plains Teen Fiction has seen 3 successful launches this month.  It all started with Brenda Hammond and Cape Town on April 14th at Chapters in Ottawa, then Nelsa Roberto with The Break on April  20th at Type Books in Toronto.  Kevin Marc Fournier launched The Green-Eyed Queen of Suicide City on April 24th at McNally Robinson and we’re looking forward to another great event for Jocelyn Shipley when she launches How to Tend a Grave on May 24th at Ben McNally in Toronto.  Congratulations to all our 2012 YA authors who have written truly engaging novels.

Manitoba shortlist

Our congratulations to W.P. Kinsella and Colleen Nelson whose books have both been shortlisted for Manitoba Book Awards.  Butterfly Winter for the Mary Scorer Award for Best Book by a Manitoba Publisher and Tori by Design for the McNally Robinson Book for Young People Award in the older category.  We’ll be cheering for both on April 28th!

Her name is Naomi K. Lewis

…and we are thrilled to announce that she is the winner of the 2012 Colophon prize for fiction.  Her collection of short stories, I Know Who You Remind Me Of, is entertaining, hilarious, and populated with empathetic young women, some of whom are spinning out of control.  The collection will be released this fall.  Congratulations Naomi!

East meets Prairie

Great Plains is pleased to welcome Jeff Bursey (author of Verbatim: A Novel) to Winnipeg with Michelle Butler Hallett (Creative Book Publishing) for a reading at McNally Robinson on Tuesday, February 21st at 7pm.  Turnstone’s Bob Armstrong will be joining them as well for a dynamic reading during which Jeff encourages audience participation.  Spend the evening with us in the bookstore’s atrium to celebrate creativity and good writing!

E Party!

We’re really excited to have our first e-books available for purchase on this site!  Craig Russell’s Black Bottle Man, Lyle E. Style’s Ain’t Got No Cigarettes, Nerys Parry’s Man and Other Natural Disasters and international best selling author W.P. Kinsella’s Butterfly Winter are all currently available.

Big News from Great Plains


WINNIPEG, Dec. 14, 2011 – Great Plains Publications, along with its imprints Enfield & Wizenty and Great Plains Teen Fiction, has named Maurice Mierau as its new associate publisher. Mierau will continue to act as editor of Enfield & Wizenty, as well as editor of the online magazine The Winnipeg Review, but will expand his responsibilities to include the day-to-day running of the entire company. Continue reading “Big News from Great Plains”

…and launch!

Great Plains is celebrating two extremely well attended book launches from November 16th.  Approximately 175 guests at McNally Robinson were eager to hear about the life of Dr. Jack Fainman (They Shoot Doctors, Don’t They?) and another 200 Winnipeg book lovers attended the Chapters, Polo Park event to hear Mike McIntyre relate how “Project Angel” cracked the Candace Derksen case (Journey for Justice).  Congratulations Dr. Fainman and Mike McIntyre not only on your wonderful books but for convincing so many of us to put off hibernating just a little longer to support local authors!

Great Plains Publications Newest Releases Launched

Both of this fall’s non-fiction titles from Great Plains will be launching Wednesday, November 16, 2011.  At McNally Robinson Booksellers at 7pm meet Dr. Jack Fainman and Roland Penner as they present They Shoot Doctors, Don’t They?

At 7:30pm at Chapters, Polo Park join Winnipeg Free Press justice reporter Mike McIntyre and his special guests reading from his newest book Journey for Justice.