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My passion for telling Canada's stories

by Jane Harris, over 2 years ago

As an author, I love telling Canadian stories, whether they are about history or still unfolding, whether they are happy or sad, whether they are about things we can be proud of or things that we need to change.

I also love hearing the stories others share with me in their work, or when they read my work. I am deeply touched when readers tell me that my writing helps them understand this country and its people a little better.

Over the years, my work has changed a great deal, moving from straight journalism, to creative non-fiction books about history, to personal narratives about poverty, domestic violence, and PTSD.

I am very proud that our creative industries have given me a place to grow, even though I live far from the centres of publishing in Canada. Even though I still find it hard to get the ear of the 'centre' of the Canadian book world. Even though, I still consider myself a semi-marginalized person, I am not completely voiceless, as so many others are.

I should also add that writing played a huge role in helping me recover from a devastating incident in 2013. When I wanted to give up, and saw no future for myself, I saw a future for my work and my children. They gave me reasons to hang on even though the poverty industry spun me into a whirlwind of hopelessness. Instead of quitting I got up everyday to write.

I am still here, still writing. Still telling my stories from Canada's cultural hinterland.

That is how I won the James H. Gray Award at the Alberta Literary Awards in Canada.

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