With public launches suspended during the pandemic, more authors have taken to launching their books online. Poet Annette Pateman is one of them.
On Tuesday she launched her new book, Spectrum, online from her home:
“We are in a global pandemic and we are all experiencing life at a different angle. So I focussed on enjoying the performance and bringing positive energy to it. What I enjoyed most was the sense of sharing my stories with the public.”
Annette, born and raised in London, England, now lives and writes in Thunder Bay, one of northern Ontario’s most beautiful cities.
“I moved to Thunder Bay when my husband got a job here. I have been writing for years but moving to Canada has increased my interest and dedication.
“My own background is in education as a trained science teacher. I worked in high schools for several years in the UK. I have also worked in community diversity work both here and in the UK.”
Annette was pleased to learn that the local library was planning to give online space to authors. She prepared the instruments – a drum, tambourine and maracas — and selected an area of her house as a backdrop. She then set up her camera.
“It was a little disconcerting to perform my poems to a camera without an audience and no-one else in the house at the time. However, I really enjoyed it. The sun was shining that day, which was uplifting, and the use of percussion instruments always anchors me in the performance of my work.”
The poems Annette read at her launch are all the more impactful because she’s an excellent performer who easily switches between a British accent and a Jamaican one, depending on the poem. (Her parents are Jamaican-born, and some of her poetry expresses her heritage.)
Her local library helped by distributing the video Live on Facebook:
And her favourite poem in Spectrum?
“My favourite poem is ‘The Letter’ on page 45. This is because it is based on the immigration story, from Jamaica to the UK, of my parents. My mother received a letter from my father, who was already living in the UK in the 1960s and she knew she was going to the UK.
“However, another woman was left behind in Jamaica. When I wrote the poem it was the voice of the woman who was left behind that came to me so I wrote it from that point of view. I didn’t know that it would become my favourite poem in the book but whenever I read it people seem to respond to it positively.
“The woman who was left behind was the mother of my older sister…..”
To buy a signed copy of Spectrum for $22 including postage, contact Annette at email@example.com
Spectrum is also available at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Spectrum-Annette-Pateman/dp/1714041549/