Fall/Winter News Round-Up
So many awesome things have been on the go that I haven't had a chance to blog about any of them! Here's my round-up:
My (very) personal essay on rereading Changing Heaven by Jane Urquhart appeared in Issue 93 of Canadian Notes & Queries. It was a huge honour to be asked by Kim Jernigan, the luminary former editor of The New Quarterly, to contribute to the issue alongside writers such as Caroline Adderson, Douglas Glover, Susan Olding, and Carrie Snyder. Read Kim's introductory essay here.
Last August, I had the opportunity to interview Caroline Adderson about her devastating and hilarious novel Ellen in Pieces for the Humber Literary Review. I lived in Vancouver for six years in the early 2000s, first as an undergraduate student and then as an aspiring writer. It’s where I began my literary life. So it was a pleasure to return to the city for the interview.
I was living in Nelson at the time, and decided to dip down to the States to visit a friend on the way to Vancouver. Coming back into Canada, my car was pulled over and I was aggressively questioned. The guard kept accusing me of transporting narcotics, asking when the last time was that I had them in my car and telling me that my vehicle would be wrecked by the dogs when they found the drugs in it. "Is this just because I live in Nelson?" I asked. He said no, but at least I'd gotten him to crack a smile.
Not even half an hour later, I was rear-ended on the highway by an SUV. Luckily, the accident was minor, but I ended up with whiplash, meaning months of physio and massage.
I met Caroline the next day at Bigsby the Bakehouse, a cafe near her Kerrisdale home. The acclaimed author was friendly and charming, stylishly dressed in black and white; I was flustered from the heat and from getting lost on the way. Also, my tape recorder refused to start (fortunately, my cell phone did the trick). Still, compared to the events of the previous day, it was a pretty minor snafu!
I was thrilled to be asked to read at a fundraiser for Lifeline Syria on December 4, 2015, alongisde a host of talented writers and performers. Over on your top left is a photo of me reading a short story. It was an inspiring evening that raised over $2,500.
Once again, I'm off to Guelph to teach a creative-writing workshop that's free and open to the community. Click to sign up for The Hero's Journey: Writing about Illness on Friday, February 19, 2016 from 3:00 - 4:30 p.m. in the McLaughlin Library at the University of Guelph.