25th Trillium Award

On the Road with C.S. Richardson: The IFOA Ontario Interview Series

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C. S. Richardson (photo credit: Curtis Lantinga)

Many of Ontario's most passionate and dedicated readers live in communities spread across the province, so the International Festival of Authors (IFOA), now in its 33rd year, is taking its show on the road to bring its exciting program of literary events to 14 locations throughout Ontario. From October 16th to November 2nd, outstanding authors from Canada and across the world will visit Barrie, Brantford, Burlington, Hamilton, Markham, Midland, Parry Sound, Picton, Orillia, Owen Sound, Thunder Bay, Uxbridge, Windsor and Woodstock.

Today Open Book speaks with Commonwealth Writers' Prize-winner C.S. Richardson, who will be reading in Barrie this evening, Monday, October 29, along with Shauna Singh Baldwin and Erlend Loe. Richardson's new novel, The Emperor of Paris (Doubleday Canada), has been praised by Quill & Quire "as a rich and well-told story of the transcendent power of art."

For more information about IFOA Ontario: Barrie, visit our Events Page.

Open Book:

Tell us about what you’ll be reading at this year’s IFOA Ontario festival.

C. S. Richardson:

Excerpts from my new novel, The Emperor of Paris.


What are you most looking forward to about reading in the town of your IFOA Ontario event?


Escaping the literary hothouse that is Toronto and spending time with readers who probably wonder why anyone would spend time sweating it out in Toronto.


How do you manage the shift between being solitary writer and a public reader?


With enthusiasm. I am in the business of storytelling, and there’s no better way to tell one than in front of an audience. And enough with the solitary: time to get out and meet the people for whom I write.


What is one luxury you allow yourself when you go "on tour" with a book?


I buy one book (at least) per day: either authored by someone I’ve shared a stage with, or from a bookstore I’ve appeared in. By the end of a tour, I have far exceeded the airline’s limit on luggage weight.


What book (aside from your own) will you have with you in your bag while you travel to the location of your IFOA Ontario reading?


A Moleskin, wherein germinate the seeds that will become my next novel.

Visit litontour.com for more details about IFOA Ontario.

C.S. Richardson's first novel, The End of the Alphabet (Doubleday Canada), was an international bestseller published in 13 countries and 10 languages. Winner of a regional Commonwealth Writers' Prize, it was named on four "Best of the Year" lists and adapted for radio drama by BBC Radio 4. Richardson is also an accomplished and award-winning book designer. His new novel, The Emperor of Paris (Doubleday Canada), is the magical story of an unlikely romance between an illiterate Parisian baker and a woman with her head permanently buried in a book.

For more information about The Emperor of Paris please visit the Random House website.

Buy this book at your local independent bookstore or online at Chapters/Indigo or Amazon.

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