Archive | Novel

Learning the Language

Last night I had a dream that I was holding the advance reading copy of my next novel. It had a gorgeous cover in reds and browns, and it was a big fat book. The only problem: part of it was in Italian. I don’t quite know it yet, is what I think this means. […]

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Shaking Out the Knots

Rain smears my office window as I write this, as I wait for a pot of tea to steep. It’s cold outside, and the smell of heat is coming off the radiator, and my dog is asleep on his bed behind me (having had two breakfasts, since J. and I seemed to be over-organized this […]

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Plant a Seed

You have to hear this song. I mean, really. Really.  Take a minute out of your busy life, click play, and listen. Because it’s so good. I had tears in my eyes the first time I heard it, last Saturday night, under glistening strings of white lights at the Oddfellows Hall in Thessalon, Ontario, during […]

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A Walk In the Woods (and a Giveaway!)

In Calgary, this past spring, I had the real pleasure of reading Leo Brent Robillard‘s fourth novel, The Road to Atlantis. The publisher had asked me to blurb it, which means to give it a tidbit of praise they can use on the cover, and I’m usually careful with these things so I didn’t agree until I’d […]

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Night Blooming

Last night, I learned a lesson. Again. Early yesterday morning, I’d sat in the chair in my office, coffee on a nearby coaster, staring at the blank page of my notebook. I was stuck. In particular, on a chapter that seemed contrived, where something happens but I didn’t like how it happened. It was too […]

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Building the Spell

I set a personal goal for myself this week and so far I’ve been hitting it. The goal: three hours of work per day on rewriting chapters. I use the timer on my phone, and I go hour by hour, and I stop the clock when I take breaks so that I know I’m not […]

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Homecoming

I’ve been back home for just over a week. So far, 2015 has been a bit of a whirlwind. You know this if you regularly read my blog, or follow me on Facebook, but I spent January and February at my mom’s place, helping ride the waves in the wake of my stepfather’s death, came […]

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Leaving on a Jet Plane

By the time you read this, I’ll be leaving on a jet plane. Bye, bye, Calgary, forever known to me now – my friend M. said Monday night over a meal of olives, oysters, devilled eggs, pork belly, purple cabbage slaw, strawberry-basil cheesecake, cocktails, and wine – as the city where I learned how to […]

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Spring Draft

The world has changed while I’ve been here. Last year, I saw the spring arrive in Saskatchewan, while writing poetry for two weeks at the Sage Hill retreat. This year, it’s Calgary, where the leaves have begun glowing as if lit by an internal light, as Ian McEwan describes it in Enduring Love which I […]

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Character Study

These days, I’ve been working on my new novel, narrated by a young woman called Melonie Barnett (unless, of course, I decide to change her name). The story grew out of three linked short stories – Empty Nest, which you can read in the latest issue of The New Quarterly; Rhubarb, which will be in Oberon Press‘s 15: […]

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