Events coming up…

HI! It’s been a while, and I need to update some of the pages and doings on here, but for now I have few things I should mention:

  1. I’m in this anthology! Come on out to the launch: “It’s The PAC’N HEAT Launch Party! Come celebrate with us at See-Scape on Thursday Nov. 10th from 7 PM to 10 PM! Check out the video games! Drink some drinks! Buy some books!”



2. I’m teaching an Uncreative Writing Workshop at Naked Heart Festival (Saturday, November 12th at 10:30am):


Info on my uncreative writing stuffs:

3. I’ll be presenting a paper/on a panel for the Diasporic Joyce: the 2017 James Joyce Conference in Toronto:


4. I’ll be reading at words(on)stages on January 19 at The Central


And still working on my novel manuscript. It’s been an adventure.


Art Exhibits, Feminism, Launches, and a tiny bit of Thurston Moore

Photo on 2013-04-03 at 4.49 PM


I am tired.

After many months of writing, painting, preparing, drawing, and oh heavens, winter weather, I have a bit of time to relax. Last month I participated in the Feminist Art Conference, read my first conceptual piece at an event, released my new chapbook The Octopus Complex, and opened my first solo art exhibit.

1. The Feminist Art Conference

The two pieces I had displayed are part of a series I’ve been working on for a while. The series is entitled “SLUT” and although I’ve been painting them out of therapy, at their core, they’re a way of expressing an empowerment.

I’m not usually keen on describing what an art work is; my joy in art is to explore a piece with my own experience and interpretation. I post up two of the works that were selected for the conference:

“SLUT” water color and ink on yupo paper. 9 x 12

SLUT by Jacqueline Valencia

“Claudia” acrylic on canvas 24 x 30

Claudia by Jacqueline Valencia

I also had the pleasure to be on a panel called “Creating Our Own Narrative: Responding To Gendered Violence.” It really opened my eyes to how privileged we are in Toronto to hold an event like this. Bangladesh-writer Aliya Khan spoke on how academic women in her country are pressured into submitting to pre-arranged marriage regardless of their choice or their education. It’s something we take for granted here, especially if someone says,  “Just leave. Marry whoever you want. Or don’t get married.”

Aliya says it’s just not that easy. You are exiled and cast aside by your entire family and culture if you attempt to make your own choices. There exists very little support for the independent woman.

Another one of the panelists Danielle Nicole Smith (click on her name for her work), data mines MRA (men’s right activists) comments on feminist blogs for her artwork. When asked how she felt about the backlash to her work, she said in her young life she was already tired of explaining Feminism 101 to folks. She didn’t feel she needed to apologize for wanting to be respected, for fighting for equal rights, or for simply existing.

And it’s all true.

I did speak as well, but my memory of what I said is a blur. I got to converse with poet Andrea Thompson about our own experiences being of mixed race. It’s one thing when we talk about feminism, and it’s another when we talk about feminism as a black person, but it’s also quite another when “this is what I talk about when I talk about feminism as a mixed race person.” I haven’t talked about these issues in a long time and I was glad to be in a space where I could.

Photos and more on the conference at their tumblr and website:

2. The Octopus Complex

The launch for my new chapbook was at Q Space and it’s my first chapbook with a publisher: LyricalMyrical Press.

I’m very excited about it and the launch for it was splendid fun. Here’s a few photos that my friend Tanya took that day.



The Octopus Complex can be purchased from my backpack bookstore and soon at Q Space bookstore. As usual, all hardcovers will be for sale while a pdf version is free. Still working on digitizing it with a Creative Commons License so y’all can read it and remix it if you’d like (just send me your works so I can see them!).


3. Charlie And Crush Are Here the Art Exhibit at Playful Grounds.

Here are some pieces I did for it :

“Emily” acrylic on cardstock with acrylic on frame 7 x 12 SOLD


“Crush Letters” ink on paper with frame SOLD


“Charlie Scream” acrylic on canvas 12 x 16 ($400)


“The Kiss” acrylic on canvas 12 x 16 ($400)


To see the rest of them you’ll have to go to Playful Grounds this whole month of April to check them out!

I will have prints made and originals up for sale at an online store (and the online portfolio  I will be setting up soon.

Photos from opening night:

Salt Circle performed. It was an amazing set! Check them out here:


My reading.


The art crowd.


And a clip of one of my readings that night. Thanks to Henry Martinuk

P.S. I finally saw Thurston Moore in concert with Chelsea Light Moving this weekend.

PhotoGrid_1364781417083There are NO WORDS, man. No words.

I went absolutely nuts when they played “Burroughs.” NUTS, I say!

At the beginning of this post, I said it was tired and I had a bit of time to relax. By time I meant a few hours. I’m painting a more realism based work at the moment and working on a few submissions. Look for “Charlie and Crush Are Here” the graphic novel the exhibit is based on in Summer 2013. And guess who qualifies now to be a full member of the League of Canadian Poets?

And of course, Getting Inside James Joyce’s Head is still continuing.

There’s no stopping now.

Onward and forward, my friends.

On Day 12 of GIJJH and The Octopus Complex Launch this Sunday!

james joyce young


Just a few thoughts before I head out on some errands:

Every year since I was twenty six, I’ve made it a habit to re-read Ulysses. It mostly due to nostalgia, longing for a night in my last years of university when a group of us would get together and read it out loud to each other one night. Like most things in those days, it was just another excuse to drink, be silly, and be intellectual about it, but it was a great night.

Ulysses was probably my first encounter with visual poetry and I believe this is why it appealed to me so much. I’d read it to myself, feeling the mellifluous sentences flow out of me as I whispered each one back onto the page. However, I’d find myself turning a page and just stopping, staring at the paragraphs as if they were illustrations drawn by poetic breaks or pauses in speech; each sentence a lesson in chiasmus and three dimensional rhetoric.

I’ve dedicated the time I’ve given to that book to Portrait of The Artist in the retyping of it and I’m finding myself in the same arena with it; albeit a micro arena here. The language in Portrait has started off simple with much of the same wordplay I found in Ulysses. Words are game to Joyce and the joy is in the riddle he’s crafted for the reader.

And when it had all gone down slowly the hole in the basin had made a sound like that: suck. Only louder.

To remember that and the white look of the lavatory made him feel cold and then hot. There were two cocks that you turned and water came out: cold and hot. He felt cold and then a little hot: and he could see the names printed on the cocks. That was a very queer thing.

Looking at this passage the words: hole, such, socks, hot, cold, queer thing

-they stand out. Reading them over and the way Joyce has put them together forces me to read them staccato, both out loud and in my head. Joyce will also cycle with contrasts. Here it’s with cold and hot, later on, in what I typed out today I found: term, again, vacation, term, again, vacation. He even uses the word “tunnel” to visually the reader through those passages.

Anyways, I’ve created a twitter account for Stephen Dedalus ( to note some of the passages that have stuck out for me so far.

I haven’t given up on this year’s reading of Ulysses yet. I’ve occasionally picked it up and entered passages in my moleskine alongside my daily thought taking. Nostalgia can be toxic, but it’s time I put it to use.



This Sunday I am launching another book, this time through LyricalMyrical Press.

Here’s the blogto listing:

And the facebook event page:

And for your amusement and mine:


New sketch I did today and an update.

“That Ice Cream” ink and pencil

* I’ve been invited to guest read/perform at an event being held in November by Sheniz Janmohamed at Stay tuned for more info on the launch as I get updates.

* I’m doing my first solo art show at Playful Grounds in August 2013. My series is called “Charlie and Crush,” which will be based on my upcoming graphic novel, “Dos,” and accompanying webcomic (both which will be launched separately this winter). I’m very excited about this project.

* I read one of my new pieces for the first time last night at The Victory Cafe. “Aliens Gave My Cat A Beard” (which based on this illustration by Steven Rhodes), was well received. I’ll let A.G. Pasquella tell you how the night went in his own words: Congrats to AG! I look forward to reviewing Newtown in this space in the near future.


“Green Frog” a haiku by my son, C, for the first day of Spring.

1) My poetry chapbook, “Maybe,” will be on display at Project Space (located at 222 E Georgia Street, Vancouver), for the month of April. It is part of a great exhibition by Poetry Is Dead Magazine which is focusing on the chapbook as visual art form. I’m very excited to be a part of this project.

For more on the exhibition:

Poetry Is Dead Magazine:

Project Space: (You can also purchase a paperback of my chapbook at Project Space!)

2) dead (g)end(er) magazine is launching its third issue next month and a few of my works are in it. It is an honor to be in a magazine who has published the works of Natalie Zed, Nathaniel G. Moore, Robin Richardson, and Liz Worth, among many other great talents.

You can get it here:

Or you can come to the launch in April (which I am hoping to attend):

3) A.G. Pasquella is launching his new book Newtown in May. He has also asked me to come read some of my work at the launch. Of course, I said, “Yes!” I will post up more details as the date comes near.

4) Project Sketchbook “Limited Edition” was a slow start for me. March Break with the kids home made it a less motivating time since it was nice outside! Here is a sneak peak at one of the sketches done so far.

 My theme for this book is “Distance and Time.” It’ll be a comic book.

After I fill up the sketchbook, it will be sent to the Arthouse Brooklyn Library where it will be published in a book, among other sketches, this Fall.

The Sketchbook 2012 World Tour is coming and it might be in your city:

My 2012 sketchbook is in it, so feel free to leave me a message if you see it! I’ll be at The Gladstone Hotel the weekend the tour hits Toronto in July.

5) Don’t forget to check out my story “Open” in Little Fiction’s ebook “Listerature”:

6) Writing away at my book “Tell Me About My Hair Dryer? Yea or Nay?” I’m four chapters in and the story is flowing, but it is also taking me places I didn’t think I would go. Very much looking forward to using some new tools I’ve learned in it’s creation.

Short story and poetry submissions are all on the go and I need a new moleskine. It’s funny how when you start something like this, that you just can’t stop. I’m terrified of failing and making a fool of myself, but when opportunities come, I think I have to take them or else I’ll be afraid that I’ve done nothing. There’s something in there about grabbing the bull by the horns, but I’m a Taurus and we don’t kindly to that sort of thing.

I don’t ride off into sunsets; I’m a writer, I create stars…planets, universes, new kinds of hands, light bulbs, pretty flowers, funny cats, etc.. I will always be a work in progress.

P.S. This makes me very happy: Van Gogh confirmed with another underneath.

From the Maybe launch.

Photo by Jennifer Valencia

I started it off with an André Breton  poem and went from there. It was a very fun night. Thank you to all who came! Many thanks also to Playful Grounds Cafe for hosting the event.

To those who have asked for artwork prints, shoot me an email at j.valenciapoetrydotcom and I’ll arrange for it!

Paperbacks are available through me as well (always in my backpack), and you can still find them free and downloadable here:

Look for a story of mine in an upcoming ebook by Little Fiction called “Listerature” (out on March 7th), and some of my poetry in the next print issue of dead (g)end(er) magazine.

Now to get back to some submissions and editing. Ohhhh editing.


A review so far for “Maybe”: ”

“Great language & imagery in ‘ready’ (“sour planets outside my door”). I was totally delighted by MIMO– I am a Sci-Fi Sucker! ‘google maybe image pantoum’ had an amazing rhythm.”A.G. Pasquella

Maybe (the chapbook) has been released! Get your copy.

“Maybe” is free to download in printable PDF here:

Maybe by Jacqueline Valencia (2MB)

You can also purchase the paperback here:

or through me at the launch or wherever you find me.

The launch is on Feb. 10th at Playful Grounds Cafe:

“Maybe” the Chapbook Launch

Friday, February 10, 2012 at 7-10pm @Playful Grounds, 605 College Street , Toronto, ON

(Facebook event page here:

“Maybe” is a collection of poetry, short stories and illustrations on the concept of the word “maybe.”

Everyone is invited for an intimate night of readings, treats and drink. Fellow writers, poets and friends are also asked to share, read, & showcase their own work if they’d like to as well. I like community especially when it comes to art.

I will be giving away a few signed copies & there will be a few for purchase there as well. It will be available for purchase online or through me as of January 27th (I will post details for this at that time).

RSVP and feel free to cross-post.
(Playful Grounds’ provides a relaxing ambiance where you can chill out, network with others, have a coffee or a glass of wine or whatever you need to just feel like a person again…)