V6A is the postal code prefix for Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, an area challenged by poverty-related issues and maligned as “the poorest postal code in Canada.” But the Downtown Eastside (DTES) is also beloved by residents for its optimism, community ties and heterogeneity. V6A: Writing from Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside is an anthology of creative writing by 32 people who have been a part of the DTES community in some way, at some point in their lives. Published by Arsenal Pulp Press, this map of a moment in the DTES’ creative life reappropriates the code and allows a community to define itself, on its own terms.
Contributors include: John Barry, Elisabeth Buchanan, Wayde Compton, Henry Doyle, Daggar Earnshaw, Albert Flett, Patrick Foley, Angela Gallant, Gary Geddes, Anne Hopkinson, Jonina Kirton, Don Larson, Gisele LeMire, Robyn Livingstone, Stephen Lytton, Don Macdonald, Muriel Marjorie, My Name is Scot, Lora McElhinney, James McLean, Brenda Prince, Antonette Rea, Rachel Rose, Sen Yi, Irit Shimrat, Kevin Spenst, Loren Stewart, Madeleine Thien, Michael Turner, Phoenix Winter, Cathleen With, Elaine Woo and Daniel Zomparelli.
While many participants of Thursdays Writing Collective are published in V6A, the anthology is not a product of the writing program.
Coeditors John Asfour and Elee Kraljii Gardiner donate sales of the book with partial proceeds going to Thursdays Writing Collective. Copies can be purchased in Vancouver at Pulp Fiction, People’s Coop Bookstore, Little Sisters Bookstore, UBC Campus Bookstore, Chapters and Indigo. It is available in the US and internationally as an e-book.
The print book, which was released in April 2012 entered its second printing in September 2012 and was shortlisted for the City of Vancouver Book award. It has appeared on several course curricula throughout Canada in literature and sociology courses.