Showing posts from January, 2016

Now Available

The Malahat Review's issue focusing on creative nonfiction is now available! The cover is simply gorgeous. The contents include my essay, "Dripsody (Reprise)," plus many other types of creative nonfiction, including book reviews. It's an honour to have work appear in this august company. In it, I refer to "Dripsody," a musical composition by my uncle, Hugh LeCaine. You can hear a sample at here . But seriously: the cover! By Jeffrey Veregge , it's entitled Nothing Can Hold Us . And it's beautiful.


I'm thinking about paperwork these days. Maybe it's because the first of the year always brings paperwork (year-end income and expense statements, for starters), or maybe because these few months have required both my passport renewal and the renewal of my permanent residence card. In any case: documenting one's whereabouts, one's activities--it can require keeping paper, and knowing where you've kept it. But there's also something a little spooky about paperwork defining you. A trip through my strongbox this morning was a wee trip down memory lane. Marital status, residence, church membership, university transcripts, work status information--all of it requires paper, much of which could be kept. But should it? This past weekend was the memorial service for Margaret Phillips, feminist, activist, and the personality and energy behind the Northern Woman's Bookstore. She was an important part of the region's recognition of art and literature, and we&#

Whose Story?

A really neat element of country living is sharing your life with animals. We don't keep livestock (on purpose--don't get me started about supporting squirrels and/or other rodents) just as we don't really garden. However, we share our place with wild creatures: eagles and a lynx as well as the more prosaic (though still interesting) ravens and crows, foxes and otters. This morning, we noticed eagles screeching and soaring unusually close to our house. It was cold enough (-5F) that we didn't expect their persistence. Now that our bay is beginning to freeze and the shoreline is mostly snow-covered, they often do a fly-by or two, then climb thermals and go off to hunt in open water. This morning, the eagles and many ravens seemed to linger a few hundred meters to the right of the house, near the shore but out on the (growing) lake ice. I couldn't tell from the house, and I wasn't comfortable going out *too* far on the new ice to get close, but some type of ani

Facts and Nonfiction

Welcome to 2016! Here's a story about facts and creative nonfiction. Recently, we took a long car trip. My husband has this love for our (now antiquated) GPS system, while I'm a paper map kind of person. I find the GPS annoying, and sometimes "she"--we have the voice set to an American female--doesn't know what "she" is talking about, in spite of her authoritative tone. Meanwhile, my husband finds paper maps confusing and likes "her" detailed instructions. One day on our multi-day drip home, I was driving--out of a city, an interstate stretch, and then a shortcut to a different interstate. My husband was "navigating" with the GPS, though I'd also looked at the map earlier before I stowed it somewhere, and I was pretty confident that I knew which routes I wanted to take. We enjoy car trips--the time together, the scenery, the chance to think aloud to a sympathetic audience of one--so we were relaxed and chatting. Then my husb