Can This Be Over Already?: Confronting the Truth about Endings

Panic

By Shayna Krishnasamy You’ve done it. You’re embarking on the final chapter of your book. You’ve reached the denouement. You type out the word “Epilogue” with shaking fingers. You can’t really believe it. You’ve reached the end. This is the end. Terrifying, isn’t it? Well, terrifying might be a strong word, but many authors have mixed emotions when they come to the end of their book. Maybe the novel isn’t what they hoped it would be. Or maybe they don’t have their next writing project lined up, and the idea of all that free time is alarming. Maybe they enjoyed writing the book so much they’re sad to see it go. Or maybe they’re relieved to finally be done with a book they lost interest in writing a month ago. Whatever the author’s feelings about the ending of her book might … [Read more...]

Kobo Launches Emerging Writer Prize to Celebrate Debut Works by Canadian Authors

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Monetary prize and marketing support awarded for books in three categories: Literary Fiction, Genre Fiction, and Non-Fiction Did you publish your first book in 2014? Do you have a Canadian passport? If so, you may want to consider entering Kobo’s first annual Emerging Writer Award of Excellence. Created for debut authors in three categories: Literary Fiction, Genre Fiction (beginning with Mystery, with a different genre showcased each year), and Non-Fiction, each winning author will be awarded a $10,000 CAD cash prize and promotional, marketing, and communications support; winners will be announced in June. … [Read more...]

My Writing Life: David Ebsworth

David Ebsworth

When did you first discover a love of writing? Is there a particular book that made you want to become a writer? I've dabbled with writing for most of my life but never had the confidence to attempt a full novel until I was coming up to retirement, back in 2008. It seemed like a great chance to challenge myself and fulfil a long-term ambition at the same time. Since then I haven't been able to stop! What's your favourite book? What was your favourite book as a child? My favourite book of all time is Great Expectations and, as a child, it was definitely Rosemary Sutcliff's Sword at Sunset. Where do you get your story ideas? I like to write stories that I wish somebody else had already written—but which don't yet currently exist. So I look for angles on more familiar tales … [Read more...]

My Writing Life: Pauline Baird Jones

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When did you first discover a love of writing? Is there a particular book that made you want to become a writer? I fell in love with books first, of course, but I think it was Georgette Heyer's books that caused me to pick up a pen (back in the olden days when that's all I had to write with) and write what I now know was fan-fiction. Then it was just a case of: "I don't want this book to end, so I'll write more so it won't end." Where do you get your story ideas? My ideas seem to happen in this weird part of my brain. Sometimes it is a jungle I must pass through. Others a locked room with a combination I have to figure out. And always it is an adventure I pass through with my characters. I can see external triggers every now and again, but the story that results doesn't usually … [Read more...]

The Sunburst Award – Literature of the Fantastic

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By Rebecca Simkin As great as it is that so many books are published every year, it can be difficult to choose what to read. We hope that one of the unintended side-benefits of the Sunburst Awards is that it makes these decisions easier—especially if you like your reading to be fantastic and written by Canadians. The Sunburst Awards showcase literature of the fantastic written by Canadians. Of course, as typical Canadians, we use the broadest definitions of Canadian and literature of the fantastic: If you are born in Canada—no matter where you currently live—then you are Canadian. Congratulations! It's a wonderful thing to be!  Literatures of the fantastic include fabulism, fantasy, magic realism, science fiction, speculative fiction, and supernatural horror. We list as many of … [Read more...]

My Writing Life: James Calbraith

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When did you first discover a love of writing? Is there a particular book that made you want to become a writer? I'd have to find my old notebooks to tell for sure, but I think I was about 10 when I started writing short stories. I never really stopped. I’ve wanted to be many things since then—a theoretical physicist, an archaeologist, a programmer, a lazy layabout—but it always comes back to writing stories. I read whatever I could get my hands on, and most of the names are now obscure to all but the most devoted fans: Robert Sheckley, Harry Harrison, Gordon Dickson. I didn't try to write a proper novel until I was much older, and the transition from short to long form took me ages. Where do you get your story ideas? For the past few years, almost all of my ideas come from … [Read more...]

Is Your Funny Flabby? Better Hit the Comedy Gym

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By Jefferson Smith Humor is one of the most powerful implements in the writer's tool kit. A quick wit can be a spark of light to balance dark times; shared laughter can unite uncertain allies against insurmountable oppressions; the quality and content of a joke, and the reactions to it, can illuminate the character and intellect of every hero, villain, or bystander who hears it. Yet authors rarely wield this weapon with any facility, and even fewer attempt a conscious study of it, which is a shame. Because even if you write more like Tennessee Williams than Robin Williams, you can beef up your funny muscle. All you need to do is find the right gym. I found my gym entirely by accident. Like most writers, I started young, developing my chops on short stories in high school and then … [Read more...]

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