Wild Writer(s)

It’s been a crazy-in-a-good-way kind of autumn for me, in both my writing world and my day-job world. I moved my massage therapy practice into a beautiful little space in Fernwood, a part of Victoria I love. Did I mention that it’s all mine? The independent side of me is jumping with joy–I can use it whenever I like, decorate it however I want, AND, I can go there and write at my 100 year-old desk when I’m not massaging. Win/win! I’ve just added a huge map of the world on one wall, so now my patients and I can dream of fantastic voyages and reminisce about past ones. I LOVE MAPS!


Speaking of voyages, and writing, I went on a fast and fun trip east in early November, to the Wild Writers Festival in Waterloo, ON. This is an amazing little writers’ festival, hosted by the equally amazing magazine, The New Quarterly. I had never met anyone from the magazine, in person, but I was greeted on the first evening there as if I were an old friend. As the winner of one of their annual writing contests, the Edna Staebler Personal Essay award, I was honoured to read at the opening event, alongside fiction winner Lisa Alward and Kim Jernigan, who read the winning poem by Ruth Daniell. Here’s the link to an interview with CNF editor Susan Scott, who asked me some questions about writing the essay, and more: https://tnq.ca/not-rises-shines-interview-julie-paul/

I highly recommend this festival! And The New Quarterly… The next day was rich and full, and I was lucky enough to take a poetry workshop with Isabel Huggan and attend two panels and an evening event, before heading to my brother’s home nearby to get in a sweet visit with his family and my Dad and Nana, 90, who made the trip from Lanark Village.


Yet another wild thing: the cover of my forthcoming book of poetry with MQUP. How did they know that I love foxes, and saw at least five while in Ontario this past summer? Here’s a preview (the second capital T will be changed to lower case, for those who care about such things!) Needless to say, I am rather excited for the April 1st release of this little creature. The catalogue description will give you some more info, if you’re a curious fox.


Now, back to the wilderness of writing? There’s a novel waiting to be finished, along with some personal essays, poems, and story edits towards my third collection, which hopefully will make its journey toward publication one day. “The Expansion,” a longer story, recently won The Rusty Toque chapbook competition, and you can read the first part of it here.

Oh, right, there’s holiday madness first… Maybe in January. In the meantime, another wild thing: I actually beat my husband at tennis last month (and got to play outside in November).



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