Recent Releases

Category: Recent Releases

The longest two weeks of my life were the two weeks before the release of my debut novel, Night Call.

It’s sort of a surreal feeling as, on one hand, I’m very proud of this accomplishment and all the work it’s taken, and at the same time, I’m stuck between excited and anxious, seeing as this publication coincided with the endgame of my graduate degree in chemistry. This novel is the starting point of a completely new chapter of my life, and I have no idea where it’ll take me.

When I’m writing this, it is a flawless day on Pender Island, one of 200 breathtaking Gulf Islands nestled in the Pacific off British Columbia’s coast. I’m hiking through an enormous old-growth forest where time has stood still with majestic pine trees that have stood undisturbed for centuries. I’m awed by this impossible silence with a sense that uttering a solitary word would be a terrible trespass.

While Craig Russell liked to be called a female impressionist, we can comfortably say now that he was a drag queen.

He loved all things female, all things fashion, and all things Hollywood. Performing tributes to great female entertainers – impressionism – was his passion and the key to his art, and drag was the lock where that key fit to open the door to what became a remarkable career on screen and stages across the world.

Here are five facts you may not have known about Craig and drag in Toronto:

 

I’m kind of over dystopian stories.

There, I finally said it. I read 1984 and Brave New World and The Giver when I was young. I’ve read a lot more since then, bookshelves full of destruction and disaster. But here’s my problem with a lot of dystopias: they warn us that the future could be bad. That the apocalypse—environmental, nuclear, viral, the super-patriarchy—is coming if we don’t change our behaviour right now.

But what if we’re already living in the apocalypse?

Jennifer McCartney’s wonderful review of BOY, a sensitive meditation on my novel as a reflection of the stressful pause that COVID-19 has imposed on our lives, has followed me to Ottawa. This is a city not quite in motion, and McCartney’s observations seem particularly apt as I stroll around the downtown with my daughters, Alida, 4, and Nora, 7.

A Survival Guide to Publishing (During a Pandemic)

Remember 2019? I sure do. After years of writing, dreaming, querying, pitching, revising, and more dreaming, I signed my very first book deal. The novel in which I poured so much of myself was going to be published in the fall of 2020. What a perfect time to release my first book, I remember thinking. I love fall! And it’s the first year of a new decade!  

I look back at my 2019 self and can’t help but smile. What an innocent fool.

Summer Book Club Picks

Alone A Love Story by Michelle Parise

“Alone: A Love Story is an emotional memoir of a life exploded — the end of a marriage, referred to as The Bomb — and the chaos that follows. But it's also about what blooms in the wreckage. Beautifully written, intimate, alive and accessible, the story flows like a conversation with your most interesting, wise and exciting friend.” — Emily Urquhart, author of Beyond the Pale

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