A Little Light Reading on my Vacation

When I was book editor for the Varsity newspaper at the University of Toronto, I reviewed a dictionary. This outraged the Review editor so much that I still remember his […]

The Innocent Traveller

There is nothing quite like poking about second-hand bookshops while on vacation. I was looking for anything by Sara Jeannette Duncan. Instead I found Ethel Wilson’s first novel, The Innocent […]

The Future Margaret Laurence Wanted

Are you disappointed by the results of Rio+20, the U.N. Conference on Sustainable Development? Here are some uplifting words from a wise woman who once lived in Knightsbridge, not far […]

Love Literary London

There are many things to love about London, but my favourite is its celebration of literature. Besides theatre, Sherlock and Doctor Who. Dead authors appear on blue plaques on walls […]

T.C. Haliburton and the Olympics

The London Chapter of the Haliburton Society is joining the Olympics, in the same way that the Cultural Olympiad is running in parallel with the London 2012 Olympic Games. It’s […]

Jubilee and Dialect

In my last post I tried to start a discussion on the use of dialect and idiom in fiction. I expected people to exclaim Faulkner! and James Joyce! in the […]

Once You Break

Once You Break a Knuckle by D.W. Wilson has twelve stories and for that simple reason I will make twelve points in my review. This book is a must read. […]

The Orange Prize for Fiction

At the end of this month, the last winner of the Orange Prize for Fiction will be announced. The prize has been around since 1996, and is given to celebrate […]

2 on 1

Two Canadian writers on the same page this morning in the Guardian Review. The first is a very positive review by John Burnside of D.W. Wilson’s Once You Break a […]

Sara and Edward

I linger’d; all within was noise Of songs, and clapping hands, and boys That crash’d the glass and beat the floor; Where once we held debate, a band Of youthful […]

Screenplays and Scriptwriters

How did I get here? I don’t even write film scripts. Well, I haven’t written my Wilson book review, and I haven’t done my Smart research, so I was searching […]

Le Mas Blanc and Isabel Huggan

I am happy to be able to offer you this interview with Isabel Huggan about the writing retreat she has recently opened at Le Mas Blanc. A Canadian writer of […]

Big and Small

By big and small I don’t mean the play of the same name with Cate Blanchett. I mean Tuesday, when I went to the oversized London Book Fair at Earls […]

D.W. Wilson

Remember this aside from my “Masterclass”? (Hmm, University of East Anglia rings a bell. Ah yes, that’s where the Canadian who won the BBC short story competition was studying. Who […]

Sat down and

Think of a Canadian love story gone sad and who do you think of? The federal budget of 2012 has made a cut to the CBC of $115 million over […]

Writing Workshop with Sarah Selecky

What do you do when you are writing in a place where no one knows you, or you don’t know the language, and you don’t have a writing group or […]

A Love Story

When I’m at home, I listen to the CBC; when abroad, to the BBC. Naturally, while abroad I start to miss the CBC, and in Canada I miss the Beeb. […]

Exploration and Empire

For the past two Monday evenings I have fallen asleep in front of the BBC program “Empire.” During “Making Ourselves at Home,” on March 5, host Jeremy Paxman went to […]

Parry, Ponga and Pōhutukawa

“As if there aren’t enough horrors right here on earth to turn any man’s hair white without bringing in some unknowns from outer space.”  -Simon on UFOs,  Man & Other […]

Masterclass

My readers may know by now that I am a Guardian newspaper reader. So it is no surprise that the first writing workshop I tried out was one of the […]