Category: United Kingdom

Home, yet not home

A new writer for a new year. Louise Ells was studying in the UK while I was living in London. Because I liked her written voice, I invited her to write for Canadian Writers Abroad. […]

What then?

Remembrance Day. Is it enough to remember those who lost their lives fighting in the First World War? Sharon Johnston’s novel, Matrons and Madams (Dundurn 2015), asks us to consider what happened to the survivors. […]

How to Settle: Theresa Muñoz

Poet Theresa Muñoz was born in Vancouver, where she took a B.F.A. in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia. She left at the age of 22 “to see the world” and do a […]

Cusk’s Writing Class

This review of Outline by Rachel Cusk is written by Kim Reynolds in Ottawa, who has launched an indie publisher, Bookgiddy. Rachel Cusk lives in England, and has done so for a very long time, […]

A Maid and her Cow

A recent trip to Durham has caused me to spend more brain cells than I ought mulling over cows and maids. I grew up near Queenston Heights, which was deep in the War of 1812 […]

Yann Martel

I was very tempted to call this entry “The Martels” because in explaining why Yann Martel should be included in Canadian Writers Abroad, I must mention his parents, Émile and Nicole (née Perron). Yann Martel […]

Ashtead

Lit Trip: Duncan’s Grave

People flock to Westminster Abbey to visit the Poet’s Corner, where writers are either buried or have a memorial. What is the satisfaction of these literary pilgrimmages? I too indulge in this weird pleasure. When […]

Casting Himself on a Breeze

Jig Street, where Marius Kociejowski’s Polish father and English mother settled in 1948, is twelve miles into the countryside from Kemptville, Ontario. And from Jig Street Marius unsettled himself as soon as he came of […]

Griot at Solstice

Marva Jackson Lord has been living in the UK for just over 17 years, drawn like so many others by love. The love is a Welsh Englishman named Stephen Lord; they make their home now […]

Powning in London

I met Beth Powning at a literary lunch at the Canadian High Commission, which was held on the top floor, with fantastic views of Trafalgar Square and environs. Before the renovation of Canada House, this […]

photo: Debra Martens

British Rite

British Rite of Passage for Fathers One of the many good things about being married is that I read things I wouldn’t otherwise read. Such as the humorous book How to be a Husband by […]

Flight Paths

Landing Gear by Kate Pullinger, Doubleday Canada 2014, hardcover 286 pages. Reviewed by Debra Martens. Kate Pullinger is a Canadian author living in the UK and was interviewed for Canadian Writers Abroad in 2012. Visiting […]

Spirits

Every December from 1963 for eighteen years, on Gaudy Night, while Master of  Massey College, Robertson Davies told a ghost story. These he collected into a book called High Spirits (Penguin Books paperback 1982), explaining […]

London Short Story

I was sitting at a table in the Waterstones Piccadilly lower cafe, sipping my water and watching people trickle in to the opening of the London Short Story Festival (18-21 June 2015) on Thursday evening, […]

Isle of Mull

A Kitchen Poem

Carla Lamont has kindly given permission to post one of the poems from her collection The Body Banquet. “I am Nigella Lawson” can be found on page three. I am Nigella Lawson (After reading How […]

Mulling Over Food, Writing

At the end of April we (DM, husband, daughter) took a short holiday on the Isle of Mull in the Hebrides. As this trip would involve a flight, a car rental, and a ferry ride, […]

English Winter

Wednesday noon the weather in London today is 5 degrees celcius and 83% humidity with a chance of rain at 10%, cloudy skies. According to the Met office, the weather in February 1905 was about […]

Colonial Moderns

Review of Modernist Voyages: Colonial Women Writers in London, 1890-1945 by Anna Snaith, Cambridge University Press 2014, 278 pp hardcover (ISBN: 9780521515450). Reviewed by Debra Martens. Modernism is loosely defined as the period between the […]

Emily in England

Emily Carr was both artist and writer. Something I didn’t know: she took a writing course at Victoria College in the summer of 1934.* Bed-ridden by illness, she wrote towards publication from 1937 onwards. Short […]

Emily in Dulwich

Coming out of the Emily Carr exhibition, “From the Forest to the Sea: Emily Carr in British Columbia,” at the Dulwich Picture Gallery, I heard the family behind me speculating whether they could make a […]