Author of The Glass Character, a novel about the life and loves of silent screen comedian Harold Lloyd. Loved writing this book, love Harold! The Glass Character was published by Thistledown Press in spring 2014, and is NOW available in both paper and ebook form through Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble, Thistledown Press.ca, and everywhere fine books are ordered over the internet. Harold is already generating lots of excitement, and the DVD of his famous clock-dangle from Safety Last made everyone howl at the book launch. I'm also the author of two other well-received novels, Better than Life (NeWest Press, 2003) and Mallory (Turnstone Press, 2005). My (ongoing) process/spiritual biography: writer from the start. Obsessed with the word. Climbing that mountain, sliding down, climbing up again. Most gratifying quote: "Better Than Life is fiction at its finest" - Edmonton Journal
Russell Smith on the novel’s fight to stay relevant
I’ll admit, one of the reasons I wanted to write novels is that it would make me cool. What do I mean by cool? It’s hard to say. It was romantic and intellectual, yes, but it also seemed, in an undefinable way, urban: I had images in my head of salons and bars and green gardenias in the buttonhole, images that came mostly from literature itself. I would live in a big city and be in touch with the latest things and be in some way representative of contemporary culture.
Oh yeah. I'll admit, that's the reason ***I*** started wriing novels, too. I started writing novels because I was the one girl at the high school dance that no one would dance with or even talk to. I was the girl who had rocks and mud thrown at her face and was called "sucky" by the high-status kids. I wanted to be cool, and the way to be cool was to be a WRITER hunched like a mushroom in a dark damp room scribbling away for hundreds of pages, only to discover the whole thing was crap and had to be thrown away. I wrote novels when I had two babies and had to stay up until 3:00 in the morning to find time to write - cool, eh? I always thought it was cool to have spit-up and baby shit and ink all over myself, all at once. Then later, when I drank too much, boy was it cool then because I could justify my boozing by saying writers all drank to be cool. So I had to keep writing novels even when my life ground to a complete halt and had to be restarted with a whole new set of directions. And boy was it cool to realize that the first novel I finished and polished and cherished and sent out to 65 different publishers got 65 different rejections for 65 different reasons, but mostly because it was CRAP! But I was so cool, I kept on writing novels! I found one sane person in the whole literary community who said the one sane thing any writer has ever said to me: "While you're sending out your first novel, make sure you are writing your second novel." So I kept writing and my second novel was published and I did NOT become famous and I did NOT sell a lot of copies even though the critics loved it, but hey, it made me feel way cool when my publisher sent me a royalties statement that said I OWED THEM MONEY for my ultra-cool novel! And it's even cooler how other writers bay like wolves and howl like hyenas over that story and think it's goddamn hilarious because it's not about them and because they love to feed on each other's pain! But I was so cool by then that I HAD to keep writing novels, just to add to my banked coolness, published a second novel, watched it tank like the first one, realized I wasn't going to be Hemingway in Paris or Dorothy Parker at the Algonquin, and kept on writing because I had a story that was burning a hole in my pocket.