I was raised on a two hundred year-old family farm on the north shore of Prince Edward Island, Canada’s smallest province. There, I passed many childhood hours near the old kitchen range listening to stories traded between my father and his fellow farmers, men whose parents had done the same thing, and theirs before them. So I love a good story.
Thus, it’s difficult to give you the short version of my writing life, but here goes: I began as a newspaper journalist in Atlantic Canada and, later, became a communications consultant on Great Lakes issues in Ontario. My publications outside of (paid) careers include a creative non-fiction book called A Watch in the Night: The story of Pomquet Island’s last lightkeeping family (Nimbus, 2007), which was short-listed for the 2008 Hamilton Book Award. Stories of mine also appear in three other Nimbus collections, including In the Company of Animals (2014, Pam Chamberlain, ed.).
Other fiction and non-fiction appears both on-line and in print through various publications based in the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada. See “Let Me Tell You A Story” for some of these.
While improving my craft, I’ve had the honour of mentorship by celebrated Canadian authors: Past Giller Prize nominees Dennis Bock (Going Home Again), Alyssa York (Effigy), and Marina Endicott (Close to Hugh), all through the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies; by Betsy Warland (Breathing the Page), co-founder of the Creative Nonfiction Collective, director of The Writer’s Studio at Simon Fraser University, and founder of the Vancouver Manuscript Intensive; and by Isabel Huggan, winner of the 2003 Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction (Belonging: Home Away From Home), through the Humber College Summer Workshop. Isabel kindly provided a cover endorsement for A Watch in the Night.
I have a BA in philosophy from the University of Prince Edward Island and a MS in Communications Management from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. Today I live near Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, next door to the geologically and environmentally significant Dundas Valley, which I never tire of exploring, both on foot and on horseback.
Feature Photo by Brian McInnis