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Archives

Creative Writing in What It Takes To Be Human

When I understood that my main character, Sandy Grey, the protagonist of What It Takes To Be Human (which takes place during World War II) was going to have to learn to write during his incarceration in an asylum for the criminally insane, I began thinking of how he would go about it. As far […]

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Present-Present, The Slipperiness of Time;

Or Becoming a Bird–the Work of P.K. Page: A Few Personal Notes The young Cree and Shoshone poet, Sarain Stump, who drowned in Mexico in 1975, made his home in Eden Valley, not far from where P.K. grew up in Calgary, Alberta. So perhaps it isn’t as unlikely, as it may first appear, that the […]

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Shirts: or Notes for the Rotary

Bob Clark, when he invited me to speak to you, suggested that I might talk about ‘how I got to where I am today’—a daunting impossible subject, I thought, since I’ve been writing for a very long time. And ‘where I am’—which is really, ‘where am I?’ is one of those questions as complex as […]

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The Technician in the Box

Writers Discuss an Odd Encounter with Technology by Marilyn Bowering with Merna Summers, Audrey Thomas, Jo Ellen Bogart, Candas Jane Dorsey and Karleen Bradford 1. If anyone knows Audrey Thomas’ email address could you please send it to me? A computer fatality meant the loss of my addresses. Oddly, a technician, who signed himself Dante, […]

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Personal Magnetism

The story goes that an iron stone had sat on a hill at “Iron Creek” Alberta from time immemorial. As long as it was left there, the local Cree and Blackfoot nations prospered. Hunters placed offerings of beads and knifes at its foot before they set out, and shamans brought patients to it to benefit […]

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Notes on Literacy

1. When I was coming back on the plane from Nova Scotia several weeks ago, I read Paul Coelho’s “The Alchemist” which I’d picked up during a brief stop-over in Toronto. The bookstore salesperson, trying to help me find something to read in three minutes, kept pointing me towards books I really wasn’t interested in, […]

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Driftwood Valley

Christmas in our family was a long drawn-out, messy, exuberant, exhausting, and generally wonderful affair. My high-octane, beautiful, high-achieving mother, who suffered severely from gult at not being a stay-at-home-mum like her sisters-in-laws and church acquaintances and friends, began her Christmas preparations on Remembrance Day. My brother and I, primed for work the night before, […]

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Not Writing in Spain

By the beginning of June, my daughter, Xan, is ill with gastroenteritis and tonsillitis. Too many times I’ve had to call the English speaking Dr. Brioso to the flat on Avenida Ciudad de Ronda. He brings her sweets and tells me to give her coca-cola—anything to get her to eat and drink. Nothing he does […]

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