Top and tail

Dried flowers tied with a ribbon

Here’s the first thing in my cur­rent WiP, “Dried Flowers”:

Ded­i­cat­ed to my dad, JJ, the way I want to remem­ber him.

He intro­duced me to some of my favourite authors, most­ly by for­get­ting to send back the “no I don’t want the Selec­tion of the Month” card to the Sci­ence Fic­tion Book Club[1]This is how I first encoun­tered, among oth­ers, Michael Swan­wick and William Gib­son..

And the final thing in “Dried Flow­ers” (don’t wor­ry, it’s not a spoil­er; just a post-text epi­graph[2]Post­graph?):

I have always imag­ined that Par­adise will be a kind of library.

—Jorge Luis Borges

…and now, back to writin’.


1 This is how I first encoun­tered, among oth­ers, Michael Swan­wick and William Gibson.
2 Post­graph?

A moment of clarity

Dried flowers tied with a ribbon

This after­noon, wash­ing dish­es and lis­ten­ing to music, I had a writ­ing epiphany. The song “Moment of Clar­i­ty” by 13 Engines popped up in the rotation…

…and one part of it, specif­i­cal­ly, strikes a chord on my cur­rent WiP.

A moment of clar­i­ty is all that’s required of me
And all oth­er places and oth­er times, they’re wav­ing good­bye

Yeah, that’s all the con­text you’re gonna get for now. Let me know if you’re inter­est­ed in read­ing this once it’s all done, though.

13 things about “Dried Flowers”

Dried flowers tied with a ribbon

Thurs­day Thir­teen, the late edition.

(Remem­ber Thurs­day Thir­teens? How about Ran­dom Flick­r­blog­ging? No? Sigh.)

Mov­ing on. Here are 13 things that you’ll find once my sto­ry “Dried Flow­ers” is avail­able for reading.

  1. Unre­li­able 3rd-per­son narration
  2. Palimpses­ts [1]I mean, the work­ing title was “Palimpses­ts”
  3. Flo­ri­le­gia
  5. Library apart­ment
  6. Birth­day cake [2]HAP BIRT NAO
  7. Romans à clé [3]Well, kind of
  8. Whol­ly invent­ed books
  9. An auto­graph seeker
  10. Snow falling upward
  11. Over­heard conversations
  12. Women who take male noms de plume
  13. Acros­tics

ICYW: “Dried Flow­ers” is my cur­rent work in progress. For­mer­ly titled “Palimpses­ts”, the sto­ry is about a library whose books all seem to be eras­ing themselves.

This sto­ry­telling is sup­port­ed by a grant from the Man­i­to­ba Arts Coun­cil.


1 I mean, the work­ing title was “Palimpses­ts”
3 Well, kind of

Good News, Everyone

fountain pen on notepad

Some good—no, great—news on the writ­ing front: I’ve been award­ed a writ­ing grant by the Man­i­to­ba Arts Coun­cil.

The project I’ll be work­ing on is a novel­la, titled “Palimpses­ts”[1]Work­ing title; I’m also con­sid­er­ing “Dried Flow­ers”, about a woman liv­ing in a library where all the books are slow­ly eras­ing them­selves. She has a com­pan­ion who tries their best to rewrite the erased works, with vary­ing lev­els of suc­cess. She’s also haunt­ed by strange dreams.

Eight works are fea­tured in the sto­ry, some based on real-world books[2]Not quite a roman à clef, but per­haps a roman de romans à clef, hein?, oth­ers whol­ly invented.

I’d been work­ing on the project back in the summer—it was one of the pieces I was deal­ing with dur­ing my writ­ing retreat—but when I sub­mit­ted the grant paper­work in mid-Octo­ber, I quite delib­er­ate­ly pushed it to the back of the queue.

Now it’s come back to the front, of course. I got word on Fri­day after­noon about the grant, and as I write this—Saturday evening—I’ve got the 8 palimpses­ts select­ed, with thumb­nail notes about the new text. I’ve had some inspi­ra­tions about the rest of the sto­ry too, the world June (the hero) has left, the world she’s liv­ing in now, and the world she vis­its in her dreams.

I’m excit­ed. This has the poten­tial to be a very good sto­ry. It won’t be easy to write, and I don’t intend to make it easy to read. Good luck to us all.

In oth­er good writin’ news: The good stuff is now avail­able in my province. In my city, in fact.

Writers' Tears Irish Whiskey
At last!


1 Work­ing title; I’m also con­sid­er­ing “Dried Flowers”
2 Not quite a roman à clef, but per­haps a roman de romans à clef, hein?