Metatron Press Launches ‘ʔbédayine’ and ‘Confirmation Bias’ At Anteism Books

“I Couldn’t Imagine These Books Not Existing in the World,” said Ashley Obscura

  • Metatron Press launched ‘ʔbédayine’ by Kaitlyn Purcell, and ‘Confirmation Bias’ by Ivanna Baranova. Courtesy Metatron Press

“I couldn’t imagine these books not existing in the world—they fit the vision I have for this press so perfectly and expand it, too. When I started reading those books, I couldn’t stop. Time stopped.”

Ashley Obscura, founder and managing editor, was full of praise Metatron Press’ two latest books.

To commemorate the launch of ʔbédayine by Kaitlyn Purcell, and Confirmation Bias by Ivanna Baranova, Metatron Press organized several launch events between some cities in Canada and the United States.

“I sat there during the readings with tears streaming down my face,” said Obscura. “Real tears, ones that have in them the weight of someone else’s experience. To be touched like that by language, that’s what I’m here for.”

Ashley Obscura, founder and managing editor at Metatron Press, had her sights on ‘Confirmation Bias.’ Courtesy Yoav Worth

In Montreal, Anteism Books on Beaubien W. was ground zero for the event Aural Oracles: A Book Launch on Oct. 19.

“I can’t speak enough about the importance of showing up for the literary stuff in our communities,” added Obscura.

“To be able to connect with one another off the screen in an intimate way like at a reading, that is such a special and rare thing.”

Obscura was a first-reader for the works considered for the 2018 Metatron Prize—the winner of which gets a publishing contract. That’s how she was initiated to both Purcell and Baranova’s works.

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She explained that Purcell’s work was chosen by CAConrad and Anne Boyer as the winner, but she couldn’t let go of Confirmation Bias, which did not win, although being shortlisted.

“I’m constantly looking to make connections with people who are craving feeling more deeply and talking more vulnerably and exploring experimental avenues of thought.” — Ivanna Baranova

“In Edmonton, Ronnie learns what it is to be a young Indigenous woman, almost-alone in the city; unable to hear herself over its noise, see through the glare of its lights to find the ground beneath her feet,” reads the blurb to ʔbédayine.

An emotional body of work that has been cultivated over the past five years, ʔbédayine is a far-reaching collection of stories and poetry that can only be described as triumphant.

In Montreal, it was an emotional night for the featured authors, with the audience being treated to a variety of powerful poetry and short stories.

Confirmation Bias is Baranova’s debut poetry collection.

“I feel so much gratitude, to just be in this space with so many people who actively care and want to hear poetry,” said Baranova. “I’m constantly looking to make connections with people who are craving feeling more deeply and talking more vulnerably and exploring experimental avenues of thought.”

Along with Baranova and Purcell, readings were given by Marcela Huerta, Xavier Ford-LeGrand, Bára Hladík, Tara McGowan Ross, and Fawn Parker, who was a last-minute addition to the launch.

The Montreal launch happened at Anteism Books on Oct. 19. Courtesy Yoav Worth

“I think tonight was a perfect example of the possibility of illumination of thought and feeling through community, and just to celebrate in community, it makes it all worth it,” said Baranova. “Writing can be a solitary activity, and I’m just grateful to feel that my words have moved people.”

“Just to hold space for each other and to see everyone again after so long and just celebrating where we’re at, it’s empowering.”

Huerta, a Metatron published author, also had a connection to Confirmation Bias, having designed the cover for the book.

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“It’s always really interesting to do the design for a book because you’re looking at representing the book’s content visually and taking themes from it and trying to match it up,” said Huerta.

On the cover page, the name of the work is made out of holographic foil.

Huerta said that in publishing debut authors or debut books, Metatron’s launch events tend to be intense and emotional. “You can tell it’s important to everyone, it’s really beautiful.”

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