Run away runway

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In my writing workshops, I talk about emotional writing and how to convey sentiment without using words like angry or happy. The best way to express feelings in writing is to actually describe what these emotions bring to you or your character’s face, body laanguage and voice. Next, my participants do a writing exercise where we take an emotion word … Read More

Love at first sight

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I saw him from across the room. A handsome guy with an intense stare. I decided to go over and say hello. That’s when he head-butted me. It was my introduction to Tomas, a cat at the Fort Smith Animal Shelter. He knew he was going to be mine the moment he laid eyes on me. And he wasn’t about … Read More

Target, Zellers and Grade 7

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I walked past some Calgary seniors last Thursday lamenting the loss of Target. It sounded like they were truly upset. However, one woman asked, “What was wrong with Zellers? I miss that place.” I have to agree with her. While Target and Zellers are only two of the many retailers fading away, the Mom and Pop clothing stores that used … Read More

A simple resolution

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Happy 2015! I usually don’t make resolutions but I’m making an exception this year. It is: in 2015 I will notice the small stuff. Those little and small things that don’t really matter but in the scheme of things, really do. Things that make up the big things like the pink floating in the red and orange of a sunset. … Read More

How I wrote my book

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Yes, I’m touting my book again. As an indie writer and publisher, I have too. No one else is going to promote me except me. So give me a moment to toot my own horn. The Raven named Flight and How She Learned to Fly centres on a raven from Fort Smith, N.T., a small town that I lived in … Read More

Cooking up dreams

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Walking past a downtown Calgary restaurant the other day I smelled something good. What wafted through a restaurant door, hitting my nostrils on the cool winter day, was a mixture of inviting and warm comfort food: tomatoes, fresh bread and a hint of cinnamon. Maybe not something you might think of together but for me it combined into a memory … Read More

Calgary sprawl

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Cold night. Black night. A bright moon. Its light slants between skinny, stark trees. Pale and naked. Bare of leaves. These are aspens. We speed past them in our car and the trees become barcodes found on packages you buy in the store. The trees are up for sale too. To anyone who can afford to buy them. But they … Read More

Dressing like a “gangsta”

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For the past four weeks I’ve been spending some time at the Calgary Drop-In and Rehab Centre teaching a memoir writing workshop. Every Wednesday morning for about an hour a few people write around a table in the midst of a busy room buzzing with conversation and movement and a movie blaring on the TV in the corner. It’s not … Read More

All it takes is one person

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Ghosts are real. I know because one haunts me. He doesn’t just appear at night – he comes anytime, anywhere. This ghost is not a fanciful wisp residing in my brain, this ghost is real. I’ve seen him. In the flesh. I went to West Africa, along with a woman from New Brunswick, to work as an intern at a … Read More