new release

Category: new release

I’m a tired parent right now. I’m fatigued from trying to figure out what inside activity to do with the kids each weekend. I’m worn out from booking a COVID test every time one of us gets a cold. And I’m burnt out from trying to figure out how to be okay and raise kids that are okay while the world feels so scary and out of control. What makes this even harder is that us parents are trying to navigate this within what I call the culture of impossible parenting.

The culture of impossible parenting works hard to convince parents of six core (and annoying) messages.

 

Musician Hayley Gene Penner grew up sharing the stage with her father, renowned children's entertainer Fred Penner. Now she has just released her debut solo album and published her memoir, both titled People You Follow. In her deliciously entertaining memoir, Hayley traces her career as a songwriter moving from Winnipeg to L.A., along the way digging into her past relationships to unearth stories that delicately straddle ethical and unethical behaviour, self-protection, and self-destruction.

The longest two weeks of my life were the two weeks before the release of my debut novel, Night Call.

It’s sort of a surreal feeling as, on one hand, I’m very proud of this accomplishment and all the work it’s taken, and at the same time, I’m stuck between excited and anxious, seeing as this publication coincided with the endgame of my graduate degree in chemistry. This novel is the starting point of a completely new chapter of my life, and I have no idea where it’ll take me.

When I’m writing this, it is a flawless day on Pender Island, one of 200 breathtaking Gulf Islands nestled in the Pacific off British Columbia’s coast. I’m hiking through an enormous old-growth forest where time has stood still with majestic pine trees that have stood undisturbed for centuries. I’m awed by this impossible silence with a sense that uttering a solitary word would be a terrible trespass.

While Craig Russell liked to be called a female impressionist, we can comfortably say now that he was a drag queen.

He loved all things female, all things fashion, and all things Hollywood. Performing tributes to great female entertainers – impressionism – was his passion and the key to his art, and drag was the lock where that key fit to open the door to what became a remarkable career on screen and stages across the world.

Here are five facts you may not have known about Craig and drag in Toronto:

 

I’m kind of over dystopian stories.

There, I finally said it. I read 1984 and Brave New World and The Giver when I was young. I’ve read a lot more since then, bookshelves full of destruction and disaster. But here’s my problem with a lot of dystopias: they warn us that the future could be bad. That the apocalypse—environmental, nuclear, viral, the super-patriarchy—is coming if we don’t change our behaviour right now.

But what if we’re already living in the apocalypse?

Jennifer McCartney’s wonderful review of BOY, a sensitive meditation on my novel as a reflection of the stressful pause that COVID-19 has imposed on our lives, has followed me to Ottawa. This is a city not quite in motion, and McCartney’s observations seem particularly apt as I stroll around the downtown with my daughters, Alida, 4, and Nora, 7.

A Survival Guide to Publishing (During a Pandemic)

Remember 2019? I sure do. After years of writing, dreaming, querying, pitching, revising, and more dreaming, I signed my very first book deal. The novel in which I poured so much of myself was going to be published in the fall of 2020. What a perfect time to release my first book, I remember thinking. I love fall! And it’s the first year of a new decade!  

I look back at my 2019 self and can’t help but smile. What an innocent fool.

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