Why Writing the Other is Always Radical (Part I)

Photo by Ali Arif Soydaş on Unsplash Writing the other is an inherently political act, especially when the dominant culture wants to turn the other into a “them.” An “us” is a person of dignity with whom we can empathize and recognize as a human being. An “us” is someone we can relate to and …

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Archival Hauntings: A Review of The Bone Mother by David Demchuk

David Demchuk, who attended Montreal's Blue Metropolis festival earlier this year, is the author of a Scotiabank Giller Prize-nominated collection of horror short stories, The Bone Mother. This was quite an accomplishment for a horror writer, especially since writers of horror fiction are so often excluded from the literary mainstream. The Bone Mother, set in …

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World Fantasy Convention 2015, Part I: Guy Gavriel Kay’s Children of the Earth and Sky

He spoke in a small presentation room called Broadway I in the Saratoga Hilton at Saratoga Springs, NY, introducing for the first time the central concept behind his new novel. It was Guy Gavriel Kay giving the origin story behind Children of the Earth and Sky, due for release this Spring, and I was among the privileged few to hear him …

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How T.E. Lawrence Came to Many-Pillared Iram

Today's post is another YouTube video, in which you will get to listen to my own reading of a piece of short fiction I wrote for the Mythgard Institute "Almost an Inkling" creative writing contest. The contest is still going on, but now that the current week's voting is over, I was really enthusiastic to share this …

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Pacifism and Kenneth Morris’s The Chalchiuhite Dragon

Lately my blog posts have been slowing down because of the attention I'm giving to my research assistantship with Professor Robert Lecker at McGill University--we're researching the history of literary agents and agencies in Canada. As such I have not had the occasion to post about my experience of MythCon 2015 as I did with MythCon …

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The Almásy Controversy: History, Fantasy, and The English Patient

The following is an update of an essay I submitted to a class on Michael Ondaatje taught by Prof. Robert Lecker at McGill. The English Patient, especially after it was transformed into a movie, ignited a controversy about historical representation. Was it ethical to rewrite the death of marginal desert explorer László Almásy by having …

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The Chalchiuhite Dragon by Kenneth Morris

Perusing the books on sale at MythCon 45 at Wheaton College in Norton, MA this summer, I stumbled across a most peculiar historical fantasy novel. It was the long-lost masterpiece of Kenneth Morris, The Chalchiuhite Dragon. Well-known, if not actually famous, for his modern Celtic fantasies such as The Fates of the Princes of Dyfed …

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His Majesty’s Dragon by Naomi Novik

What if dragons and their riders formed their own corps of soldiers adjacent to the Royal Navy during the Napoleonic Wars? You get Naomi Novik's Temeraire series, the first novel of which, His Majesty's Dragon, I have just finished reading on my Kobo. William Laurence, a Royal Navy captain engaged in the Napoleonic Wars, captures …

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