CBC Saskatchewan

  | Bookmark and Share

Alice, Amy and Jeanette

This week on SoundXchange we have a new story by Alice Kuipers, read by the remarkable Amy Matysio, plus the restless rock of Slow Down Molasses' sister band--Jean's Boots.                             

Small town Saskatchewan doesn't offer much of a window on the music scene. Regardless, there was always a.m. radio, a sky full of bright stars and Neil Young in the tape deck of her dad's pick-up truck.Jeans Boots has toured Canada coast-to-coast and up and down Saskatchewan, and opened for Buffy Sainte-Marie. And Shotgun Jimmie. People say the band sounds like Eric's Trip and Sonic Youth. That's pretty nice.

Jeans Boots is singer/songwriter/musician Jeanette Stewart with Ryan Drabble on drums, Tyson McShane on bass and Carl Johnson on guitar. Here they are in concert at Gus' Pub in Halifax: 


Photo: Here we are!

 Alice Kuipers and partner Yann Martel at the launch of Oscar-nominated film Life of Pi. 

Alice Kuipers' own words (from Harpercollins.ca): I started writing when I was in my teens. I had a notebook that I carried around with me and in it I put poems, stories, and stuff from my daily life. At the time, I sort of thought I might like to be a writer but I couldn't imagine how the words I wrote could ever be in a real book. I was born in London, England, in the suburbs. The suburbs of London are vast and I felt growing up that I couldn't escape them. So when I was eighteen, I went traveling on my own for nearly a year. I went to The Cook Islands, Fiji, the US, Australia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, and some other places along the way. I realized there was a big big big world out there and I decided to spend the rest of my life visiting every country in the world. That didn't happen.

I went to University in Manchester and got a degree in Psychology, spending most of the time working on a novel instead of studying. Writing was traveling with my imagination. After my first degree, I did an MA in Novel Writing at Manchester Metropolitan University. It seemed like a step to get me closer to my aim of writing a good book.

 I spent my summers throughout these years traveling as much as I could afford to. I worked in Hong Kong, traveled around Greece with my brother and sister, and spent two months in Indonesia. When I was twenty-four, I fell in love with a Canadian and moved to Canada; Saskatoon to be precise. I'd never even heard of it, but I was wildly in love and I wanted the relationship to work. It has worked--we have a son (and now a daughter, and another on the way soon) together now....

 And while I was in Canada, I kept writing, kept writing, kept writing. I became brave enough to send out work, to get rejection letters, to finally get work published. And so, now, my second book is out and I'm working hard on the third. My first novel, Life on the Refrigerator Door, was published in 28 countries and won several awards. I've had stories produced for the radio, nonfiction published by The Sunday Telegraph, Easy Living magazine, and The Bristol Review of Books, and I've had some poems published in literary magazines in Canada. My second novel, Lost for Words, has a different title in the other countries where it's published: The Worst Thing She Ever Did. I love titles and found it impossible to chose between the two!" Alice's third YA book is 40 Things I Want to Tell You and she has a Writing Tips Blog which has recently climbed to number 2 in the education charts in iTunes in Canada, and number 3 in the US. If you're an iPhone person, you can find it by searching for "Writing Tips" in the app store

Find Alice's books here:


Amy Matysio Picture

Amy Matysio is a stage actress and accomplished improviser, Amy is a six time Canadian Comedy Award nominee, an ensemble member with the General Fools Improv Theatre Co., and has been a main-stage player with the Vancouver Theatre Sports League. She was last seen in Regina on the Globe Sandbox Stage in Midsummer.