Fiction and non-fiction writing

Here in PDF are some fiction and non-fiction stories I’ve written over the past 10 years. Enjoy!

Fiction

Novels

Hold Me Now
This is an excerpt from my novel, published in 2011 by Freehand Books. Hold Me Now is available on Amazon.ca.

Comments from reviewers:

“A gripping story told by a talented writer” – Michael Winter

“[Hold Me Now] is fascinating at every turn and it leads to a beautifully rendered catharsis. Have a handkerchief handy. – Globe and Mail

“A potent and poignant examination of a father’s grief” – The Vancouver Sun

“[Hold Me Now] is an examination of a truly tortured soul….This story is so masterfully told.” – CBC All Points West

“The book is worth reading at a time when our culture is wrestling with ways to eliminate bullying and increase tolerance for gays and lesbians. It is an accurate and devastating account of one man’s grief and recovery in the face of terrible tragedy, and a portrayal of the necessary path toward compassion.” – Event

White Slave
White Slave is an unpublished novel based on the journals kept by John Jewitt, an English ironsmith held as a slave by the Nootka on the west coast of Vancouver Island in 1803. Jewitt, just 21 at the time, was the personal slave of Chief Maquinna for two years; he adopted native dress, learned the language, and fathered a child with a native woman. Following his release by the chief, Jewitt settled in Boston. His published journal, revised by a professional writer, was a bestseller in the 1830s and has remained in print for almost 200 years.

Short Stories

The Man Who Ate Sunlight (published in The Toronto Star)
“One day in late April, in his fiftieth year, Macklin was laid off by the software company he worked for, and rather than look for another job he decided to take the summer off … ”

Jumper (Published in Prairie Fire)
“A year after his wife was killed, Fitch sold his house in the south end of the city and moved to the North Shore, to a townhouse on the side of a mountain … ”

A Is For Auschwitz (published in The Toronto Star)
“We lived in the south end of Scarborough, in a homely little gray brick house on a dead-end street near the lake … ”

Change Your Life
“Only a few men are born sad; most, like my friend Don, have sadness thrust upon them … ”

Homeless
“When his marriage ended, Potter took his share of the money from the house and bought a condo overlooking the lake, not far from the newspaper where he worked … ”

The Wakeup Call
“The man who would later be known as Traveller X arrived in our city shortly after 2 pm on a Tuesday in early May … ”

Man On The Moon
“In the fall of 2002 I flew to New York City to research a novel I was writing … ”

What Should We Talk About Now? (published in Descant)
“Noreen had wheeled her husband into the patio garden of the nursing home and now they were sitting together in the bright June sunlight … ”

Non-fiction

Ladder 25 (published in Geist)
“Ladder 25 of the New York City Fire Department is a small fire station on West 77th Street, on the upper west side of Manhattan … ”

What Should We Talk About Now? (published in Geist)
“For the last six months, my father has spent all of his nights and most of his days in a pink room on the second floor of LeisureWorld, a nursing home near Lake Ontario in suburban Toronto … ”

Joint Venture (published in the Globe and Mail)
“On the day of the transplant, I woke up at 5, a few minutes before the alarm … ”

Guitar Hero   (published in the Globe and Mail)
“The nadir of my music career was grade seven choir, where I was ordered by the music teacher to stand in the back row with four other shlubs who couldn’t carry a tune and lip-synch the lyrics to a dozen carols at the annual Xmas concert … ”

Using Mosaic for Windows
mosaic-coverWay back in 1994, I self published the first book about Mosaic for Windows – the first graphical browser for the web, created by Marc Andreessen and his team at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

I wrote the book in about six weeks, using WordPerfect 6.1 for Windows. I hired a young student graphic designer to do the cover in CorelDraw, a popular graphics program at the time. A local credit union approved a loan to cover the cost of printing 3,000 copies although as I recall the loan officer had no idea what the book was about.

My favourite line in the book is in the introduction: “Eventually the World Wide Web may let you order any product or service around the world directly from your PC.”

I was right, wasn’t  I!

I sold about half the print run, making a small profit on the project (sadly, I did not have a proper marketing plan!). I sold rights to a UK edition published in a smaller paperback format that same year.

Wikipedia entry on Mosaic