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The risks of attraction

I arrived in Montreal in 2001 as one more procurer of an escapist’s hideaway. I was taking a risk in coming here, looking to forget about the ordinary and unpleasant realities of life for a while. At 24 I was disillusioned with my university education thus far. I had spent the last five years living […]

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A Strolling Story

A typical writing day? I wake up and go for a walk. I pace out my plots on pavement. I contemplate the concrete while characters hold conversations in my head – occasionally with me but fortunately, most often, with each other. And to improve an awkward sentence, there is no better method than to let […]

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The Truth Teller

January 8, 2006. I sit in the chapel at Paperman and Sons funeral home on Jean Talon street among Irving Layton’s family, fellow poets, students, and the many friends who have come to pay their last respects. I’m afraid that I might break down, but a friend sitting close by reassures me, saying “It’s okay […]

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History in Your Hands

Ask any book lover to recount the roots of their passion and you’ll often hear a story of one specific book, encountered at an impressionable time – usually an old one, beautiful as an object unto itself, that provided the reader with the goosebump-rising sense of holding a connection to the knowledge of the ages. […]