When I was growing up, Canadian history was generally not thought of as being as “exciting” as U.S. history. Sir John A. MacDonald and Confederation just didn’t seem as dramatic as George Washington and the American Revolution. Well, things have changed — at least in terms of how Canadian children can learn about the country’s history. I had the opportunity to talk to the creators behind The Loxleys and Confederation, which was the sequel to The Loxleys and the War of 1812. Taken together the two graphic novels put a personal stamp on Canada’s precarious position in the 19th century, as the nascent country struggled to avoid domination by the expansionist United States.
For many Canadians, learning our history is a bit of a chore. We feel, perhaps, Americans get all the exciting history — perhaps because Hollywood keeps telling us how thrilling it is — but Canada’s story is, well, boring. Right?
Maybe we just aren’t looking at it with fresh eyes.
I haven’t done much in the way of blog posts that consist largely of links. I suppose I came close with Fake Metal Bands That Should Have Existed. However, the maestro of such posts is Natalie Luhrs, and if you’re not already following her blog, get thee hence and see what you’re missing. Then come back here! I have compiled a bit of reading that caught my eye and made me think this week. You may enjoy these, too.
Spoiler: my dog is not a writer. However, he needs walks regularly and that, I’ve found, helps my writing.
Dash is a black Lab cross, which means as far as the Humane Society could tell he looks like a Lab but that’s clearly not all that’s in his parentage. He’s just over two years old now. If I wanted to walk my legs off taking him around the neighbourhood, he would be very happy — and still not be tired when we got home.
So: we go on regular walks, weather permitting, as well as the dog parks. That’s the good, healthy thing about walking the dog in the dead of winter: you go outside even if you’d rather not. Fresh air and all that. Also, nobody in their right mind is out walking at night when it’s -20 to -30 C (plus windchill! Bonus!), unless they also have a dog. You dress for it and off you go.
Weelllll it’s been a long time since I blogged about this, mainly because I’ve barely posted about the books on my bookshelf about stories I have out there in the world. Also because I’ve been preoccupied with longer-term projects for the last couple of years! So if the new stories published have been fewer and farther between, that makes it a bit silly to write a blog post showing a Bookshelf of Things I Have Stories In with only one new addition.
Also, for longtime readers of this blog (waves): you may have noticed the site looks a little different. I’ve cleaned it up, changed to a different WordPress theme, and started getting some new posts ready. I think it looks better. I hope you do too.
Anyway, here’s what’s new (ish).
I’ve been waiting a while to announce this, but it’s finally available — my first short story published in translation is “Les loups de Vimy,” now available in the anthology Ténèbres 2017, published annually in by Dreampress in France. Translated by Sabine Sur, ‘Les loups de Vimy” was originally published in English as “The Wolves of Vimy” in Kneeling in the Silver Light: Stories from the Great War.
I guess I could have sneaked (snuck?) this news into my last post, but I didn’t want to announce I had a short story in On Spec for the first time ever without being able to link to the latest issue and show off the gorgeous cover. I was very pleased that they accepted my short story “Not Fit to Print.” I’ve read On Spec for years and it was one of the first markets I started submitting to, way back when.
“Not Fit to Print” is about Marion —a waitress, a werewolf and a part-time private eye — as she tangles with the media in Winnipeg in 1965.