Tag Archives: Newfoundland

Problematic Press Loses Virginity

Well, last week was certainly a week of firsts for Problematic Press, including David Reynolds‘ first CBC Radio interview and first public reading of fiction! Sexy times, indeed!

Let’s begin this recap with CBC’s WAM. The amazing Angela Antle invited Reynolds to the Weekend Arts Magazine to discuss his adaptation of Robert Hayman’s Quodlibets. This collection of over 300 short poems was penned by Hayman as he served as governor of the English colony in Harbour Grace, Newfoundland from 1618 to 1628. When it was first published upon his return to England, the book was intended to encourage other Europeans to to take up the task of settling this newly found land. In a sense, Quodlibets can be seen as one of the first works to promote Newfoundland tourism.

So, in case you missed the original broadcast, let me include one of the random poems Reynolds read on the air from Hayman’s Quodlibets:

Book 1, Number 70. To a fair Whore.

When we do see a woman sweetly fair,
We say that God had done his part in her,
Thou passing fair, but passing wicked art,
In thee therefore Satan hath play’d his part.

Now, Reynolds said a lot of craziness in front of the mic for this interview, so who knows what, if any, will be included in the podcast of the show. Nevertheless, additional excerpts from Hayman’s Quodlibets can be found on past Problematic Press blog posts here and here.

Hanging out at the CBC was a lot of fun, but taking part in Myles Reichel’s fundraiser at The Ship for A Ninja Story was really exciting, too!

Reichel, who is also the bassist for Uneeda, has just begun the year-long launch of his comic book, A Ninja Story. The plan is to raise money for the comic book by releasing the first issue on t-shirts, with a new page/shirt becoming available biweekly over the next year. The first shirt features the cover art for the first issue of the comic, and it looks wicked! To score a shirt, head to Downtown Comics or a Uneeda show. Problematic Press has been privileged enough to gain a sneak peek at some of the later pages of the comic, and it promises to please!

And, to kick off the epic journey of A Ninja Story, the fundraiser was a load of fun! There was a lively array of music, comics, art, and words as Reichel’s friends came out to show their support for his comic venture. The show began with the soulful sounds of Laura Murray and Joanne Bennett, then Danielle Bailey kicked out the jams. The ladies sounded great from our seats at the merch table.

The merch table at The Ship

The merch table was almost like a second stage for this gig. This was Reichel’s base of operations for the event, where all the patrons’ questions about A Ninja Story could be answered. Reichel had also invited Problematic Press and artist Asuka Lilith to share in the festivities, so we showcased our works alongside his t-shirts. It was a great opportunity, and Problematic Press is certainly grateful!

The bar was set high when David Reynolds took the stage to read an excerpt from his short story “Showdown at the Cactus’s Prick.” Reading to a bar full of people juiced up on awesome music might seem like a daunting task, but the crowd was attentive and more than patient. Reynolds was quite pleased that he heard no audible heckling and he even heard a few laughs at the funny bits.

After the reading, Paul Brake played a great set, followed by Mike McDonald, who was hilarious. This built up to the epic finale …ToShredsYouSay?!? Indeed! And, they were tight. Problematic Press really appreciates ending the evening with a bit of thrash.

Problematic Press would like to thank all those who came out to The Ship for the show last Friday and all those who listened to CBC’s WAM at 7:30am the following Saturday. Tremendous thanks for all your support!

Cheers!

Dave and Myles

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BOOK LAUNCH – Robert Hayman’s Quodlibets

Problematic Press is pleased to present Robert Hayman’s Quodlibets, Lately Come over from New Britaniola, Old Newfoundland.

Quodlibets - Front Cover

Hayman’s Quodlibets is a collection of witty, poetic verses that were penned while he served as governor in colonial Harbour Grace, Newfoundland between 1618 and 1628. His is likely the first English poetry penned in North America.

And, his work is quite impressive. Containing original poetry as well as his translations of pieces by John Owen and Francois Rabelais, Quodlibets reflects on thieves and knaves, good wives and whores, as well as the untamed beauty of Newfoundland. Hayman’s poetry exposes his love for Newfoundland, inviting the adventurous and hopeful to settle this rock.

Robert Hamyan’s Quodlibets can be purchased through Amazon.ca and Amazon.com in both print and Kindle ebook formats. You can find this and other great titles in the Problematic Press Store! Check out the links in the menu above.

Please, read and enjoy!

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TREATS: Quodlibets Sample and a FREE Short Story

Cheers, all!

I previously promised treats, and now it’s time to deliver! Problematic Press offers eager readers TWO tasty treats for their minds to munch on. *om nom nom*

First, let me present you with a sample poem from David Reynolds’ adaptation of Robert Hayman’s Quodlibets, Lately Come over from New Britaniola, Old Newfoundland. Hayman’s Quodlibets contains over 300 poems, written as epigrams or witty verses. The following poem is a tribute to Sir Francis Drake, whom Hayman met as a small boy in the streets of Totnes. The admiration Hayman views Drake with is clear here. That meeting could have been the spark that ignited Hayman’s adventurous spirit, eventually leading to his expedition across the Atlantic to the rugged coasts of Newfoundland. So, for your reading pleasure, here is the seventh verse from the fourth book of Quodlibets:

7. Of the Great and Famous, ever to be honoured Knight, Sir Francis Drake, and of my little-little self.

The Dragon, that our Seas did raise his Crest,
And brought back heaps of gold unto his nest,
Unto his Foes more terrible than Thunder,
Glory of his age, After-ages wonder,
Excelling all those that excell’d before;
It’s fear’d we shall have none such any more;
Effecting all, he sole did undertake,
Valiant, just, wise, mild, honest, godly Drake.
This man when I was little, I did meet,
As he was walking up Totnes‘ long Street,
He ask’d me whose I was? I answer’d him.
He ask’d me if his good friend were within?
A fair red Orange in his hand he had,
He gave it me, whereof I was right glad,
Takes and kissed me, and prays, God bless my boy:
Which I record with comfort to this day.
Could he on me have breathed with his breath,
His gifts Elias-like, after his death,
Then had I been enabled for to do
Many brave things I have a heart unto.
I have as great desire, as e’er had he
To joy; annoy; friends; foes; but ’twill not be.

This poem expresses how a chance meeting could be just the right sort of encouragement for an adventurer. Perhaps that’s why I like it so much. Hayman’s Quodlibets contains many more poetic gems like this, and Problematic Press will launch that title later this month!

As for the second treat, Problematic Press is proud to present David Reynolds’ short story “Showdown at the Cactus’s Prick,” available as a FREE ebook at Smashwords! That’s right. It’s free. Just drop by Smashwords and you can download the story in just about every ebook format imaginable, like .epub, .mobi, .pdf, .html, and more. Share the link with your friends to give the story to others. It’s as easy as that.

Originally published in Late Night Dungeons, “Showdown at the Cactus’s Prick” was going to be part of a series of short stories, collectively called Sabaku, the Deserter. Perhaps it may still become that series. It’s an action-adventure tale set in a fantasy dystopia. Sabaku has abandoned his homeland to escape the tyranny of its oppressive ruler. Not far beyond the borders of his homeland, he must avoid capture at the Cactus’s Prick, a tiny refuge for rebels and outlaws. Since it’s a short story, I’ll let you read it yourself to discover the outcome.

Enjoy these treats, folks! Stay tuned for the launch of Quodlibets later in March!

Cheers!

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Upcoming Treats

Cheers!

Thanks so much for all of your interest in this humble venture thus far! I strive to satisfy your expectations, and I’d like to share with you my own expectations for 2013. Expect to see the following titles in the inaugural year of Problematic Press:

Quodlibets (1628) by Robert Hayman is quite likely the first work of English literature penned in North America. Hayman composed this collection of epigrams during his service as Governor of the English colony in Harbour Grace, Newfoundland. Containing original poetry as well as his translations of pieces by John Owen and Francois Rabelais, Quodlibets reveals Hayman’s poetic insight reflects on thieves and knaves, good wives and whores, as well as the beauty of this rock we call Newfoundland. This is a saucy appeal from an adventurer’s soul, crying out to others to share in his quest! (This edition has been adapted from the original Middle English by David Reynolds.)

A Strange Manuscript Found in a Copper Cylinder (1888) by James De Mille was the professor’s most popular tale. Set in a lush hidden oasis in Antarctica that’s infested with prehistoric monsters, De Mille takes us for a ride in this tongue-in-cheek epic of romantic fantasy!

The True Story of the Three Billy Goats Gruff: The Troll’s Side of the Story (1991) by David Reynolds was written when the author was just 11 years old. Subtle and charming, the work reinterprets the Norwegian fairytale from the perspective of the kind troll who falls prey to the prejudice of the oldest goat Gruff.

Assuming all things run smoothly from here on out, Quodlibets should be available by March 2013. In the meantime, keep an eye out for other announcements and fun tidbits from Problematic Press!

Cheers!

DR

P.S.: Here’s a new treat I can’t wait to announce – the Kindle has come to Canada! Check the Problematic Press Shop (CAN) for all the tasty techno-treats!

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Day 1: It Has Begun

Welcome, friends!

This is a momentous occasion.  Problematic Press has just arrived on the scene with a mission to stimulate your hungry, eager intellects!

Problematic Press intends to challenge your fundamental preconceptions of the world through original works of literature as well as important, yet often neglected, texts from the past.  Our first release will be Robert Hayman’s Quodlibets, which is quite likely the first work of literature produced in North America.  Written while Hayman was Governor of the British colony in Harbour Grace, Newfoundland in 1628, this edition features David Reynolds’ adaptation of the Middle English poetry into more contemporary language, in order to make the text more accessible to today’s audience.  Reynolds makes every effort to preserve the poetic elements of Hayman’s work, which reflects upon matters ranging from spirituality to politics and is largely an appeal to the British to settle in the Newfound-land.  Quodlibets portrays the reflections and attitudes of one of Newfoundland’s, and also North America’s, founding fathers in unabashed eloquence.

Stay tuned for updates on other upcoming releases!  Tell your literati friends that Problematic Press is here to stay!

Cheers!

David Reynolds

Problematic Press - Hat Logo

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