Better Next Year Book Launch details

Better Next Year Book Launch at Massy Arts Society

“On Thursday, November 16th at 6pm, join Massy Arts, Massy Books and Tidewater Press in celebrating the launch of Better Next Year: An Anthology of Christmas Epiphanies, edited by JJ Lee. The evening will include light refreshments and readings from three contributors: JJ Lee, Sonja Larsen and Joanna Baxter.

This project has been made possible by the Government of Canada. Ce projet a été rendu possible grâce au gouvernement du Canada.

Venue & Accessibility

The event will be hosted at the Massy Arts Gallery, at 23 East Pender Street in Chinatown, Vancouver.

Registration is free and required for entrance. Register here:

The gallery is wheelchair accessible and a gender-neutral washroom is on-site.

Please refrain from wearing scents or heavy perfumes.

For more on accessibility including parking, seating, venue measurements and floor plan, and how to request ASL interpretation please visit:

Covid Protocols: Masks keep our community safe and are mandatory (N95 masks are recommended as they offer the best protection). We ask if you are showing symptoms, that you stay home. Thank you kindly.

About the book:

Better Next Year An Anthology of Christmas Epiphanies (Tidewater Press, 2023)

Christmas is trumpeted as a time of peace, joy, bounty and goodwill. Believers and non-believers alike covet the spirit of the holidays even when their circumstances are screwed up.

Recollections from acclaimed Canadian authors combine with emerging voices from across the country in an anthology that debunks the popular depiction of Christmas while delivering its messages of hope and renewal.

Writers of colour, immigrants, Indigenous authors, members of the queer and transgendered community and those marginalized by personal circumstance share memories of surviving bleak Christmases past: holidays spent in shelters, prisons or on the streets; families marred by alcohol and violence; personal struggles with addiction, poverty or grief; isolation and loneliness. Despite these and other obstacles, contributors strive to salvage the spirit of the season.

About the contributors:

JJ Lee’s debut book, The Measure of a Man: The Story of a Father, a Son, and a Suit (McClelland & Stewart) was a finalist for the Hilary Weston, Charles Taylor, Hubert Evans and Governor General’s awards for Non-Fiction. For ten years, he was a contributor reporter, producer, and host for CBC Radio and now leads a Non-Fiction workshop at The Writer’s Studio at Simon Fraser University.

Sonja Larsen’s memoir Red Star Tattoo: My Life as a Girl Revolutionary (Random House Canada) won the 2017 Edna Staebler Non-Fiction award and was shortlisted for The Writers’ Trust Non-Fiction Award. She lives in Vancouver, BC, where she is currently working on her second book about her experiences running a computer lab in an inner-city community centre.

Joanna Baxter co-founded and co-hosted a quarterly reading event and podcast called Spiel_Vancouver to support local emerging writers. She is currently working on a collection of short stories. Joanna lives with her husband and two teenagers on Vancouver’s North Shore.”

From Massy Arts Society November 13, 2023