Here’s some good news: my story “Exercises au subjonctif” recently won the Humber Literary Review‘s Emerging Fiction Writers Contest! I just received my print copy of the magazine last week, but the whole issue is currently free to read online.
I’m obviously delighted with this win, and it’s a thrill to read the comments from judge Zoe Whittall; she praises my “clear, beautiful writing” and says the story has “a strong arc and point-of-view.” It’s a little surreal to receive accolades (and prize money!) when so many of my submissions still end in rejection.
It’s especially great to have the contest win on my CV as I query agents and Canadian publishers for my first novel and my collection of interlinked short stories. That’s right, I’m shopping around TWO manuscripts! After I finished my weird Covid novella back in January, I realized I’d written enough short fiction to put together a book. I’m calling it “We Don’t Throw Rocks,” after a line in “Urban Wildlife,” a story that was published online in Carte Blanche.
I’m also working on a new novel. So far I’ve written about 40 000 words but this is only the first draft and there’s a long way to go. I’ve gone back to writing first thing in the morning, which gives me the advantage of a quiet, distraction-free house while my kids are asleep. I’m writing longhand, then transcribing my work into Scrivener, my favourite word-processing app. (Do we call it an app if it’s on the computer? And does anyone say “word processing” anymore? Gosh, I feel old.) Anyway, I’m writing a lot, which always makes me happy.