Interview

Category: Interview

Even before coronavirus, there was an urgent need for clear communication, for translating science into plain language, for demystifying medicine and for reducing stigma around disease and disability. This type of science writing is even more critical during this global pandemic. 

In Jacob Bronowski’s 1973 book The Ascent of Man, based on the television series, he talks about the danger of an ‘aristocracy of intellect.’ He warns that keeping scientific knowledge only amongst such an aristocracy could “destroy the civilization that we know.” He writes:

Closing Time is the seventh and final instalment in the Stonechild and Rouleau police procedural series, and the feeling is akin to sending my last child off to university. Naturally, I’m asked how it feels to finish writing about Officer Kala Stonechild, Staff Sergeant Jacques Rouleau and the rest of the gang, and I always respond, “bittersweet”.

Throw them a challenge! That simple piece of advice remains one of the best I’ve received from other mystery writers in whose skilled footsteps I follow. It’s a variation on the ‘ask-the-what-if-questions’ approach to characters and plot. More importantly, it’s an incredibly useful way to develop your protagonists and antagonists. Put them outside their comfort zones (and even better, put yourself outside your comfort zone as a writer), and you’ll watch fascinating and quite unexpected things happen as a result.

My life has been blessed by five powerful Near-Death Experiences (NDEs), two that happened in my childhood, and three that occurred in my adult life, my most recent in 2003.  My first adult Near-Death Experience in a plane crash in 1979 changed the entire course of my life and my career as a medical doctor.

How could I have written and seen the publication of 99 books? I ask myself that question and it does seem odd. After all, I didn’t have a book published until I was, um, 29. So, if my math is correct, all were written in the brief space of 39 years. That’s an average of 2.5384615 per year according to my calculator.

Just for the record, I believe I have at least six or seven that I wrote but (perhaps for the best) never found a publisher. And, of course, I have a few more upcoming projects in the works, as should any writer who loves the job of sitting down and writing.

Hello Canada, Publishing a first book takes a long time. It was over a year ago that Dundurn accepted Evie of the Deepthorn for publication, a figure that doesn’t include years of writing, revising, and submitting, and we still aren’t quite there yet. As I write this, the upcoming release seems both too soon and too far away, like getting there requires a leap of incredible faith. In some ways I feel as if I’m Achilles shooting an arrow towards a target in one of Zeno’s famous paradoxes, watching the arrow halve the distance endlessly, never quite advancing. But I know that one day—and soon—the arrow will inevitably hit its mark, the book will be released, it will find its audience, and I’ll feel that strange mixture of excitement, relief, and disappointment that comes with hitting a major milestone and inevitably wondering—when you’re allowed a minute to breathe—what comes next.

Hello Canada,

 

I wanted to be a fairy warrior princess when I grew up. My friends and I spent our recesses writing stories and acting out adventures: rescuing princes from evil wizards, practicing archery on horseback, attending balls to spy on a villainous lord.

I used to play dress up in long velvet gowns. I still do that, sometimes, but to be honest I think I look better in my black button-up shirt and floral-print bowtie. Gender is like that for me—dress up. It can be a lot of fun.

Hello Canada,

My name is Brenden Carlson, and I am publishing my first novel, Night Call, in June of 2020. It has been an incredible journey going from amateur writer to nearly published author, and it all began in 2008, when my parents accidentally bought me the wrong book.

True Patriots Blog

Hello Canada,

 

I’d like to introduce you to my first novel, an action thriller called True Patriots. It will be published by Dundurn Press at the end of February.

Remember the East-versus-West bickering during last fall’s election? The arguments seem trapped in a perpetual cycle, resurfacing every few years. What if things got really out of hand the next time? I mean really, really got out of hand. That’s the premise of my novel.

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