Monday, December 28, 2015

That Was the Year that Was

It's time for one of those year-end, contemplative posts. So here are some bits of accumulated wisdom from 2015.

Best Life-Simplifier: Buying extra underwear and socks. When you have a well, you're conscious of water. When you go from one week's worth of underwear and socks to three weeks' worth, the number of loads of laundry you do drops dramatically, your cistern stays full longer, and you don't need to buy extra water. Plus you can stop monitoring water quite so obsessively.

Best Indulgence: Buying iced-tea spoons. They were not strictly necessary and have yet to be (may never be!) used for iced tea, but they were also inexpensive. And it's SO LOVELY to be able to avoid getting mayonnaise and peanut butter on my knuckles. Small pleasures are sometimes the BEST.

Best Challenge: Saying "no" more often than I was really comfortable with, all so any "yes" could be something I did with great enthusiasm. I had some great experiences last year and am looking forward to a couple of new things in 2016. Tip: It helps to have a sudden reminder (like a husband having heart surgery) of your priorities.

So long, 2015. You have had moments of joy and sadness, frustration and peace. Welcome, 2016. 
Monday, December 14, 2015

A Year Later

My husband's heart surgery was a year ago tomorrow. The following poem has been my companion, off and on, ever since.
[i carry your heart with me(i carry it in] 
    i carry your heart with me(i carry it in
my heart)i am never without it(anywhere
i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done
by only me is your doing,my darling)
                                                      i fear
no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want
no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you 
    here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart 
    i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)
For his part, my husband says he feels more like these lines:
     I have not been unhappy for ten thousand years.
During the day I laugh and during the night I sleep.
My favourite cooks prepare my meals,
my body cleans and repairs itself,
and all my work goes well.
They're from Leonard Cohen's poem, "I Have Not Lingered in European Monasteries," which is from The Spice-Box of Earth.

He means, of course, that he feels quite well, not that I'm any great shakes as a cook. 

It's been quite a year. A good one, on balance. And we're both grateful. 

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Another Recommendation

In a new installment from the "I don't really write book reviews but have something to say about this book" department, I recently reviewed Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants at Brevity.

Spoiler alert: I really REALLY like this book. REALLY really. A LOT a lot.

Here's a link to the review at the journal itself:

Here's a link to the day it was featured at the blog:

And here's where you can buy this wonderful book:

Seriously. It's a lovely companion.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

There and Back Again

I spent time recently in The Big City, doing a project. I knew it would be demanding and that I'd need something else to do--probably not a writing something, and probably not a reading something, but a something-something.

What I came up with was a photography project. Insert standard disclaimer here: I'm not a photographer. I have a little digital camera because my iDevice isn't powerful enough to have a good camera. I love to take pictures of where I live--it's beautiful. I've created calendars and games and puzzles (and business cards) that feature my pics, for Christmas gifts.

But I'm by no means a "real" photographer.

That said, last December, when my husband and I were navigating his health issues, I found it extremely helpful to have a "photo-a-day" project to think about.

So I made up one for this trip, too. I came up with a week's worth of "prompt"-type words (all sort of vaguely related to "autumn") and took pictures here one week, and in the city the following week.

The words: leaves (2 images: one here, one there), light (3: 1 here, 2 there), colours (3: 1 here, 2 there), brisk (2: 1 here, 1 there), comfort (2: 1 here, 1 there), message (3: 1 here, 2 there), and grateful (2: 1 here, 1 there). Note to self: Brisk??

In any case, I was so grateful to have this semi-creative personal project to work on in odd hours. Living in a place where "nature pictures" are so easy to take, I often find myself wondering how many more times I need to "click" a sunrise or sunset or cloud or loon or leaf. Putting a few parameters on a project (but seriously, "brisk"?) is a great way to define a playspace.

I'll do it again.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

That Whooshing Sound...

was September, apparently.

I spent the month face-down in collections of words--

* writing a novel (nearly done with the Full Draft! can't wait to type "the end" and start revisions),
* writing and goofing around with new essays,
* revising and submitting short stories and essays, and
* reading many works by Robertson Davies and one by Milan Kundera (oof, the contrast).

Plus doing other things that have rattled around on various to-do lists.

Plus "just being" outdoors, while it's possible to sit on the deck and blink into the sun without wearing tons of layers.

Busy, fruitful, exciting rewarding. Lots of nights with the aurora and beautiful moons and brilliant planets (Venus, was that you?). The kingfisher is still around, this morning a flock of Canada geese paraded past, Monday a merganser and loons were hanging around avoiding their close-ups, the heron stopped in (perhaps to say goodbye?) a couple of weeks ago.

And yesterday, a deer swam by. Yup. Wanted a shortcut, I guess.

I don't mind, so much, that I end the month with a cold. It's been a good month.

Welcome, October. What have you in store?
Saturday, August 29, 2015

Review of Best Canadian Essays 2014

A couple of weeks ago, local artist/director/activist/writer/arts-supporter Michael Sobota reviewed Best Canadian Essays 2014 for the Thunder Bay Chronicle-Journal. Theoretically, the review will appear online, but who has that kind of time?

It's impossible to read the whole review in the photo above, so I'll pull out some important points.

"I read the entire book in two days."
 (Not a trivial undertaking--16 essays on many different topics.)
"The collection is full of challenging ideas, reflective memoirs, political and sociological examinations of current subjects and some really, really fine writing."

He cites Naomi K. Lewis, and her reflection on anti-science policymaking in Canada, and Sarah De Leeuw's examination of film festivals as particularly relevant and engaging pieces.

And yes, he says nice things about my essay, "Words," as well ("beautifully structured, vulnerable and wise"--wise? I wish!). Thanks, Michael!

In closing, he says

"The Best Canadian Essays 2014 should find a place of honour in your travel bag, on the deck at your camp, by the reading window in your breakfast nook, at your bedside table."

Published by Tightrope Books, this series represents an interesting cross-section of Canadian writing. (And yes, I'd say that even if my work hadn't been in it twice.) Editors read the entire year's worth of Canadian periodicals and select a wide-ranging assortment of work. 

Just to show the editors' breadth of reading, here are just a few of the periodicals that first published this year's essays: Room, (sadly, no more), Alberta Views, Up Here, Prairie Fire, POV, Walrus, and The New Quarterly.

It's a worthy collection and series, and I suspect it doesn't get the attention it deserves. If you order it from the publisher or through your local bookstore, you're supporting several worthy enterprises. 

Thanks again, Michael, for your review!

Thursday, August 13, 2015

More Reading: Clay and At Hawthorn Time

From the “I don’t review books, but I have some things to say about these books” department.

Takeaway: I really liked Clay and At Hawthorn Time. You might, too.

Over the past couple of years, I’ve been doing a lot of reading about nature, the environment, and climate change. I’ve been reading mostly nonfiction, because I need to know THINGS, from policy and promises to deadlines and measurements to definitions and examples. But I also read personal essay collections—some focusing on the writer’s relationship to one plot of land or geographic region, others about a specific subject (such as trees or moss). The fact-and-policy nonfiction is interesting but often hopeless; the personal essays are lovely and helpful, even if the writer’s reality doesn’t mirror mine.

Recently I’ve been thinking beyond nonfiction to fiction—specifically, about the ways writers of fiction show relationships between their characters and the natural world. From long-ago literature classes, I dimly remember that novels were deemed “good” if they were set in a place so special that the story couldn’t be extricated from it. When people say “the landscape was like another character,” I think they’re somehow getting at the same thing. Writers like Ivan Doig, Kent Haruf, and Willa Cather come to mind. Off the top of my head, Louise Erdrich and Angie Abdou (especially The Canterbury Trail) are a couple of contemporary novelists working in the same space.

But—and there’s nothing WRONG with this—these writers’ work feels people-centric. Natural things happen and influence what the people do, but the books are still all about the human characters.

Enter Melissa Harrison, author of two novels: Clay (2013) and At Hawthorn Time (2015). In both novels, “nature” (it feels so dismissive to refer to the huge giant natural world in that way) is the center around which the human story revolves. The two novels do it a little differently.

Clay begins—and ends—with a “little wedge-shaped city park,” a purposely nondescript sort of place that exist in cities, and is often a neighbourhood’s only form of “nature.” The novel begins (after a prologue) on St. Bartholomew’s day (August 24; I had to look it up) and continues through a full year, with chapters generally dated by the Anglican calendar. Throughout this year, people cross paths, develop relationships, come and go, see lovely and horrible things, and generally do the things that people do.

At Hawthorn Time also focuses on land with relatively definite boundaries—not the whole of England, just one part. There’s a modern highway, which we know from the prologue plays a role in the plot. There are also the old highways—Roman remnants, and even pre-Roman tracks—that are remembered only by the landscape itself and by people like Jack, a man used to “living rough” and working as an agricultural labourer. There’s a village, a vicarage, a manor house, a Georgian house, walking paths, car parks, working farms, and named places—this landscape is inhabited. As in Clay, the people who live in the area have their own desires and concerns, their own paths (haha) to follow and choices to make.

It’s not a spoiler to either book to say that at the end, it’s the land that remains. In Clay, at the end of the year, the park is still there, though many of its human neighbors have moved on and all have changed in some way. In At Hawthorn Time, the ending (which is sad for some, neutral for others, and even hopeful for yet others) reminds you that this region has been inhabited for a long time, by many generations of people who have come and gone.

That’s what I find to be different. One of the simplest questions to ask about a book is whether it ended in a satisfying way—whether that’s a “happily ever after,” a “sadder but wiser,” a “missed opportunity,” or something else. I found these books to be immensely satisfying. And that’s partly because the characters, though interesting in their own ways, are temporary. A century ago, someone put in bulbs; today, someone may tend a garden in that same spot, or it might lie under a highway. The point is, the spot is still there. The humans are different. It's oddly reassuring. 

I also found the books just lovely to read. The vivid images and close observations have made me look more closely at what’s growing around me now, in August, before the summer inevitably turns toward autumn.

So: read and enjoy.
Saturday, July 25, 2015

Summer Reading

First, this happened. Always exciting to have something published in a journal as great as Prairie Fire, to have a respected writer like contest judge Wayne Grady say complimentary things about your writing, and to keep such exciting company.

As I mentioned previously, I have picked up a houseguest and have been "on vacation," which is a stay-cation next door, at our camp. Except for showers. But before that, I had a bit of a writing retreat. It wasn't long, but it was useful. I actually started when I left here, because I "primed the pump" by reading through notes on the project, then mulled them over on the six-hour drive, and jumped right in when I arrived. Yes, I'd do it again, and for a whole weekend.

I've also learned the hard way that beach read-type books aren't necessarily my preferred summer reading. I bought one with beach umbrellas on the cover because I felt as if I should, but I could predict too much of the story, the end included grafted-on "meaningful" pieces, and basically I didn't enjoy the experience. So I'm back to my normal "to be read" pile, which includes lots of things that make me think.

In other news, summer has arrived. Warm days--some dry, some not--and nights that still try to be cool. I'm madly making notes about things I forget during the long cold spells. (Like how much grows up within two feet of the ground. Just when I have thought everything was fully leafed and summer was here, up pops grass and bunchberries and all sorts of undergrowth.) However, I suspect whatever I write won't seem real in February, just as it's difficult today to remember what this place looks like covered in ice and snow.

Speaking of ice...I wonder if we have any popsicles!
Thursday, July 2, 2015


So, last week month (really? a month?) when I wrote here, I was sharing the contents of my email spam folder because I had some thing to finish up.

After taking on a couple more things, I did finish all the things. And we went to Toronto for a cultural writerly thing and took a break. Which was great.

And now we're back, so I write today of the "writer's retreat."

Many writers have a lot of success getting away from it all for a weekend to do some focused work on one particular project. Some of the people I actually know who like retreats, being the wonderful and generous people they are, are planning a writing retreat in the fall for like-minded people.

The "retreat" concept is a little difficult for me. I've been a working writer for decades and freelancing for ahem also decades. Whether I was writing or editing, working for someone else or myself, I've been on a schedule and deadline. No time for inspiration when your piece is due at 4 Eastern on Wednesday! So the idea of having to go elsewhere to write is foreign to me. If I have a keyboard, I can give you words.

Not only that, I live in a pretty wonderful place. We're in a rural area, I work from home, my husband is also a writer, and we're compatible in our work habits (mostly). I love love love living here, even when the long driveway needs the snowblower or the lawn needs mowing. So yeah, I live in a place where other people might retreat to. (Or vacation--which is another whole concept I'm redefining, slowly, through decades.)

So I kept thinking, "Retreat? Not sure I need that."

BUT. I've also had some success with a similar concept. On Fridays, I meet two other writers at a local coffee place. Sometimes it's purely social, sometimes it's kind of social, and sometimes we're all business. One of the ways I've coped with the demands of working for money while also doing my own creative writing is to compartmentalize the "work for me" to Friday mornings. That novel? The multitude of essays I keep having ideas for? The deep revision to this story that just isn't working? Friday mornings. That may not be the ONLY time I get to it, but it is A time I get to it.

Designating specific projects for Friday morning helps in a couple of ways. First, it ensures that I'll at least check in with these projects once a week. That helps keep momentum going. Second, it helps dissipate any resentment I may feel at doing work to pay the bills--as long as I take those two hours on a Friday morning for MY work, I don't fret about the work-work.

So, recently, we went to this cultural writerly event. We stayed in motels. Motels where someone else cleans the bathroom and sheets, and the supply of water isn't limited by the size of the well. Motels with refrigerators, hot breakfasts, and restaurants nearby. Motels where my to-do list isn't, as long as I don't bring it. Motels where even generic space is different from my regular space, where my mind could possibly break free from its ruts.

A little, very little, light bulb went off: THIS is what other people like about retreats.

So I'm trying one of my own. In a couple of weeks, I'm picking up a guest in Minneapolis. I'll go down a little early, stay in a motel, and have a teeny mini-retreat. I'll bring only what I need for this draft of this essay I'm struggling with, and my only goal will be to get the draft down on paper. It'll be kind of like an all-day Friday.

I'll report back--but possibly not this week month. The guest I'm picking up will be here for a couple of weeks, so I'll get to experience a little vacation, whatever that means, too!

Enjoy the season you're in, everyone.
Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Trash or Treasure?

You know how sometimes you LOOOOoooooooove your inbox, and then sometimes you dread clicking "send/receive" because it might only bring more things for you handle and you haven't caught up from all the previous things yet?

Those "dread the inbox" times tend also to be times when it's hard to take a break--when I feel too much pressure to watch cat videos take a restorative walk or swill more coffee drink a nutritious and delicious glass of water.

But the part of my email system that never fails to amuse me? The junk mail folder. I won't quote the subject lines directly because I already get a lot of mail and I don't want to encourage anyone. But they're fun to look at.

Just today, people want to tell me about the destruction of 'Babylon' America (their single quotes, not mine); previously, they offered enlightenment about why the Bible says 'Obama' (again, their quotes) won't finish his term. Obama--or so he calls himself! Oh quotation marks, thanks for the laugh.

I've recently been offered dozens of different/improved/reduced/realistic payment plans for student loans. I've never had a student loan. I'm extremely grateful for that, and a junk inbox flooded with repayment plan offers is a good reminder of how fortunate I've been.

Then there's the email from someone named Jason, with the subject line that demands to know what I am DOING? (his caps and punctuation). Jason, buddy, if I knew, I'd tell you. But it's a great question, and thanks for making me ask myself!

And there you have it--one click has brought hilarity, gratitude, and a little mindfulness to my morning. Maybe not real "treasure," exactly, but at least some entertainment. And that's worth something.
Monday, May 25, 2015

Climate and Weather

Yesterday was sunny and warm, almost a summer day, with temperatures in the high 20s C/~80F and the right proportions of sun and clouds. 

Today is chilly, cloudy, rainy, with temperatures in the 40s and 50s. Fog is rolling around out on the bay. 

So, a big change in weather--the day to day moods of sun and wind. But not in climate--the view of this part of the world over time. (Setting aside, for the moment, anthropogenic climate change. I'm currently more interested in the life metaphor.)

My life in 2015, so far, has had a lot of weather-like changes. Ups and downs, sunny and rainy/snowy/sleety/foggy, "yes" and "no," the occasional "maybe" and "okay" and "just fine," too. 

Enough walks along leaf-strewn paths to help me get over--sort of--the significant stumble that sprained my ankle, or the pain from the book I recently dropped on that sprained ankle. 

Enough chores and delights that I don't have to keep raking, thereby exacerbating the giant thumb blister I developed last week that has burst and become really sore. 

And there are writing-type events for which the above walks and chores serve as metaphors.

Even with all the weather-esque changes, our lives' climate is seasonal and enjoyable--reasonable health, some interesting work, projects finally wrapping up, new and enchanting projects brewing. Life is still relatively normal, or within shouting distance thereof. 

Hope you can say the same. 
Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Many many congratulations!

I'm just home from a lovely conference of the Creative Nonfiction Collective (Society) in Victoria, British Columbia.

Many congratulations to the winner of the carte blanche/CNFC competition, Kirsten Fogg! Kirsten is an expat Canadian currently living in Australia. She's at work on a project about belonging, here:  I look forward to reading her essay, "Nana Technology," in an upcoming issue of carte blanche.

It was really fun to have an essay on the shortlist and hear comments from competition judge Charlotte Gill at the gala banquet.

In fact, the whole conference was a really rewarding experience, and I also congratulate the people who organized such a successful event.

It was great to spend time with people who write in the multifaceted part of the universe that is creative nonfiction. Throughout the days, I became increasingly comfortable saying to strangers, "where are you from?" or "what are you working on?" and following where the conversation led. I participated in conversations with people who were in the throes of solving craft problems and brainstorming new work. Plus, the conference food was good! Bonus!

Opportunities like the conference don't magically appear from the ether. People put in the time to make them happen, and I'm very grateful that they did. Thank you, Creative Nonfiction Collective!
Monday, April 13, 2015


It's been a hectic couple of weeks. Events have followed their usual tendency to all happen at the same time.

In the midst of the hubbub and hoop-de-do, Friday brought some especially nice news: carte blanche and the Creative Nonfiction Collective, by which I mean competition judge Charlotte Gill, have chosen "Schrödinger's Dog" for the contest short list.

I think this means that in some multiverse, this essay wins! But seriously, in the particular multiverse in which I live, I also feel like a winner--grateful and happy that this work has touched readers. That's the goal!

Many thanks to the contest sponsors: carte blanche and the Creative Nonfiction Collective. I know how much work it takes to run a contest, and I appreciate it very much!

You can look at the official announcement here. (And remember that moose sighting? Still waiting on that million dollars.)
Wednesday, April 1, 2015

No Foolin'! (Sorry!)

Because of the date, I felt the title of this post was required. 

I have even MORE good news that is--no joke!--extremely pleasing. Another essay, this one called "Schrödinger's Dog," has been chosen for the long list for the Creative Nonfiction Collective/Carte Blanche contest!

Yep, another essay about dogs. But different from the one before

The winner of the contest will be announced in late April at the CNFC conference in Victoria, BC. Victoria? In April? Yes, please. (Today's weather in this part of central Canada: ice fog. April's forecast for central Canada: mud.)

And in other non-fooling news, today I saw a moose running across the ice. I've never seen a moose in the wild before, in spite of all the horror stories and road signs, and have said so aloud. Often.

So, you know, I'm just putting this out there: I've never seen anyone come by and give me a million dollars, either! 
Wednesday, March 25, 2015


One of my essays--about counting dogs as a spiritual practice--appeared Sunday at Episcopal Cafe and is available by clicking here.

How this essay came to appear here is a study in keeping one's ears alert--like a dog's, if you will--because I'm not a member of an Episcopal church and ordinarily wouldn't have heard about this publication.

My sister is Communications Director at a large Episcopal church in Arizona and participates in several Facebook pages where people share ideas about communication strategies. The editor of Episcopal Cafe posted that they were looking for new voices for their Magazine, which features pieces about a specific topics.

Meanwhile, last fall I'd written part of this essay as part of my daily writing practice, and as part of my ongoing effort to write shorter pieces. I'd submitted it to one paying market, and it had been rejected.

When my sister pointed out the Episcopal Cafe opportunity, I recognized that expanding on the explicit spiritual element would create a larger context while making it a better fit for the publication. So yeah, I ended up making it longer; go figure!

And--this is important--I had already made the decision that I'd be willing to have it appear, even if it didn't earn money. Not everyone can make that decision, and I respect that. And I don't make that decision about every piece I write, either.

Although today is apparently a day for counting snowflakes instead of dogs, prime dog-counting season is upon us. So, go look for something happy today! Woof!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Anthology Ahoy!

Here's where I'll be in a couple of weeks!

Ten Stories High Launch 

Ten Stories High Cover2015

Saturday, March 21, St. Catharines Central Library, 2 PM. Refreshments, even!
Thursday, February 19, 2015

Rains/Pours, or the Snow Equivalent Thereof

So much good news in 2015! I recently learned that one of my essays, "Big Ideas, Small Feet," placed third in the creative nonfiction category of Prairie Fire's annual writing contest!

Many thanks to judge Wayne Grady and the hard-working people at Prairie Fire, who put out a great publication.

I'm particularly excited because this essay came from a year (the first of many I foresee) of reading and writing about the natural world and our--humans'--relationship to it, for which I received a grant from the Ontario Arts Council. It was really fun to encounter many of the fabulous ideas at work in the world and engage with them at the level of the lives we live every day.

One of my favo(u)rite books of the past year, which I consider in the essay, was Braiding Sweetgrass, by scientist and poet Robin Wall Kimmerer. I like science, and scientists, a lot. Their passion for what they do is infectious, and Kimmerer combines her scientist-self with a mother-self and a native-woman-self and a poet-self, all with great humor and honesty. She also writes with hope, which is also infectious, and rare in books about the environment nowadays.

Winning entries from the contest will appear in future issues of Prairie Fire--possibly this summer. You can also read excerpts of all winning entries in all categories here.

Lots to be grateful for this year!
Sunday, February 1, 2015

Also at the Reading...

As I have mentioned, this coming Tuesday, I'll be reading as part of the launch of a really cool program, the electronic-writer in residence program of NOWW

Besides reading from an essay that is appearing in Best Canadian Essays 2014, I'll also read an excerpt from a short story. A little more than three years ago, the first electronic writer in residence gave me very useful feedback on it. 

And I discovered recently that this story has won an award! It placed first in the annual Ten Stories High contest sponsored by the Canadian Authors Association-Niagara Branch. The current list of winners is here.

It's exciting! As I said on Facebook, I feel as if one of my favorite people has finally found some friends. I look forward to seeing the final anthology. 

Many thanks to the Canadian Authors Association-Niagara Branch for running its contest! I know how much work goes on behind the scenes to create opportunities for others. Speaking of hard work, NOWW--the Northwestern Ontario Writers Workshop--offers not only the electronic writer in residence program but also a contest, with a deadline of March 13. More info on both programs is at their home page, here.

The external events are a nice balance to the writing work, which is always rewarding in its own way, too. So much is happening this winter, and spring is still ahead. 
Sunday, January 25, 2015

Happy New Year, Indeed

I am *still* slightly bewildered about the last month or so of 2014 (and yes, still writing about it). However, both my husband and I greet 2015 with optimism, rebuilding health, and new-found energy.

In fact, lots of fun stuff is on the horizon.

February 2 marks the official Toronto launch of Best Canadian Essays 2014. Go if you can; it's a joint launch with Priscilla Uppal's much-anticipated short story collection and will feature readings by lots of great people.

The unofficial Thunder Bay launch of BCE 2014 will occur the following evening, February 3, because I happen to be reading in Thunder Bay (Brodie Library, 7 p.m.) that evening and why not.

I'm reading as part of the kickoff event for the Northwestern Ontario Writers Workshop's electronic- Writer in Residence program. Supported by the Ontario Arts Council's Northern Arts program, the event gives writers in the region a chance to attend workshops (in person or via livestreaming) with award-winning fiction writer and Thunder Bay resident Amy Jones (twitter: @amylaurajones).

The program also includes manuscript critiques conducted by email, and Amy will travel to a couple of regional locations to conduct in-person workshops there. She will also provide writing workshops to northern communities through K-Net and the Keewaytinook Internet High School. It's a wonderful program, previously supported by the Thunder Bay Community Foundation to bring Elizabeth Ruth and Marilyn Dumont to Thunder Bay.

I'm currently tossing around various ideas for what I'll read, other than an excerpt of the essay appearing in BCE 2014. One option is part of a short story that Elizabeth Ruth provided feedback on in a previous incarnation of the e-Writer in Residence. More news about that story later.

In any case, it's always fun to read. I'm happy to appear in support of the e-Writer in Residence, and completely humbled by the company in which my essay appears in BCE 2014. (As it makes its way into bookstores, I'll post links.)

Though this attention is nice, I'm mostly excited to be able to turn my attention toward writing again, and I'm looking forward to a productive, word-filled 2015. Here's hoping you are the same.