What is your latest release and what genre is it? My latest publication is an essay in the brave and wonderful anthology, a family by any other name; Exploring Queer Relationships (Touchwood Editions 2014) Bruce Gillespie, the editor of this anthology, was previously featured on Reading Recommendations
Quick description: The book explores what family means to people today and includes a wide range of perspectives on queer relationships and families. My essay, Finding My Grace, deals with my coming to terms, both emotionally and spiritually, with my daughter’s coming out.
In a previous life, I had a career as a social worker, but twenty years ago I decided to put my storytelling talent to the test. I took some writing courses, wrote and wrote and wrote, and finally enrolled in UBC’s optional residency MFA in Creative Writing. I’ve taught creative writing in various places. As well as numerous stories in literary magazines and some in other anthologies, I have four books: Running Toward Home (a novel, NeWest Press 2006), A Crack in the Wall (a collection of short stories, Oolichan Books 2008) Delivery (a novel, Oolichan Books 2009) and The Boy (a hybrid of non-fiction, fiction, and memoir, Oolichan Books 2011).
What are you working on now?
Primarily short pieces of non-fiction that I hope I’ll be inspired to expand into essays some day. I am also looking forward to the publication of my first YA novel which is tentatively scheduled for release in fall 2014.
Betty Jane’s reading recommendation:
I always have a pile of short story collections on the bedside table, and another next to my “reading chair”. I’ve recently revisited Alice Munroe’s earliest books, and one of my favourite more recent collections is Western Taxidermy by Barb Howard. Barb is a friend and colleague but I recommend her book without bias. A novel which held me in its thrall for reasons I have never been able to pin down and is at the top of pile of “re-read” is David Guterson’s The Other, published in 2008. (Barb Howard was a featured author previously on Reading Recommendations.)
Here are a few photos (taken by Robert Hegerat) from the very successful Calgary launch of a family by any other name!