As the year comes to a close, I am still working on my next short story collection and drawing inspiration from books published this year.

Here are some thoughts on three of my favourite pieces of writing.



Elizabeth Strout  Olive, Again

I have come recently to Elizabeth Strout's writing.  Her prose is sharp and economical.  She captures the voice, the character, the relationships of the people in a world of ordinary lives which become extraordinary in their ability to move the reader.  This is a sequel to the brilliant Olive Kitteridge published in 2008.

Patti Smith Year of the Monkey 

I love Patti Smith's writing.   It is personal, poetic, reflective.  In this volume, she approaches her seventieth birthday and we share the dreamscape of her year where the real and surreal travel hand in hand.

Kathleen Jamie  Surfacing

This new collection of essays pulls us into the author's work on archeological sites, digging into the past and reflecting on life.  It is beautiful storytelling - part autobiography, part nature writing, always poetic.