I have a new short story up as Catapult's Friday Fiction today. It's called "I Eat Men Like Air" (thank you, Sylvia Plath, for that line). Short stories are still my first love, and I'm glad to see this one in the world, especially with the ideal accompanying illustration. New novel is out in a month, though, and I'm drafting another one now, with some further short-fiction breaks. I hope you like this one.
Campbell River's literary festival this past weekend was such a good time. It's one of the most beautiful places (the traditional territory of the Laich-Kwil-Tach people, at the south end of Discovery Passage on Vancouver Island), and its book fan community is disproportionately huge! If you have a chance to go next year, do. You might even get to see the hundred Pacific white-sided dolphins that breezed past, which I . . . missed.
I did get to talk onstage with Mark Leiren-Young about how hard it is to write openings (his non-fiction book, The Killer Whale Who Changed the World, sold out at the fest). I was also lucky to hear him get the whole house singing, accompanied by our CBC host Grant Lawrence. Novelists Heather O'Neill and David Chariandy performed a little play, Chief Bev Sellars revealed her path to writerhood, Renee Sarojini Saklikar created a hive of sound with her poems, journalist Terry Glavin revealed his secret bank-robber past, and fiction writer Kim Fu had everyone on edge with her new novel excerpt. I gave a little teaser from My Name is a Knife. I'm happy it hits stores in July. And I'm happy to have been among this group for a few days.
That's me, Chief Bev Sellars, Terry Glavin, Renee Sarojini Saklikar, Heather O'Neill, Mark Leiren-Young, Grant Lawrence, Kim Fu, and David Chariandy. Photo credit: Words on the Water.
You can now pre-order My Name is a Knife (out in July) from your local bookstore (I love Mosaic Books here in Kelowna), Chapters, or Amazon. Really looking forward to it being out in the world , and I hope you like the read. Meanwhile, here are a couple of recommendations I'm thrilled to have:
"Hawley's brilliant second novel continues the story of American frontiersman Daniel Boone. This is a historical novel, but more than that it's an existential novel, sensuous, philosophical, with carefully drawn characters and deep dives into the human consciousness. If you crossed the best of Michael Ondaatje with the best of Alice Munro, Alix Hawley is what you'd get."
--Philipp Meyer, author of The Son
“History raw and bleeding, My Name Is a Knife is a superb sequel to the inside story of Daniel Boone begun
in Alix Hawley’s first novel, as exciting as it is thoughtful. We’ll never see this American icon—and now, his wife,
Rebecca—the same way again. Move over, James Fenimore Cooper: a woman has come to take your place.”
--Nick Mount, author of Arrival: The Story of CanLit
It's a very snowy year's end in BC, and I'm thinking about the Boones and co. getting through long, hard winters. They and the Shawnee people have much to undergo in my new novel, My Name is a Knife, which will be out this summer. I can't wait for you to read it. Here's the beautiful cover design with our Rebecca meanwhile.
Fanciness abounded last night at Rideau Hall in Ottawa, where I was (somehow) invited to watch the Governor-General's Literary Awards presentations. They know how to run a big party. Lovely to hear the laureates talk about their books, and especially to hear YA English-language winner Cherie Dimaline's speech in Anishinaabe. I met Joel Thomas Hynes (shown with his editor Jennifer Lambert, his partner Shauna, and agent Carolyn Forde in the group at the table below), the English-language Fiction winner for his striking novel, We'll All Be Burnt In Our Beds Some Night (which I reviewed for the Globe earlier this year). This year's new Giller Prize winner, Michael Redhill, was there too, as was my fellow BC writer and wearer of a black gown, Sarah De Leeuw.
(Photos all mine or friends', except the two formal group shots, including Her Excellency Julie Payette, by Sgt Joanie Maheu, Rideau Hall © OSGG, 2017)
Here's the jacket design for the Chinese edition of All True, featuring a Shawnee warrior and a shadowy Dan in the background. I love seeing designers' take on a story.
This year's festival was a great one, despite winter arriving early in BC. With other guest authors Patrick Blennerhassett, Chris Bose, and Karen Hofmann, I took part in a panel, and gave workshops and a reading. Some photos here, and more at the official site (photo credits: Kim Anderson).
I have a new short story, "Pharmakon," up at Hazlitt today. They're calling it "creepy." Who am I to argue? Happy Hallowe'en!
My piece on the Harriette Wilson, hilarious Regency courtesan and memoirist, is in Tin House's Fall issue. The theme is True Crime, and Harriette gets in as a blackmailer of her former lovers. I hope you might pick up a copy of the magazine (which is full of goodness, including an essay on "Murder Tourism in America"), and of the memoirs themselves--they deserve to be read. They're also helping me with period research for my next novel draft . . ..
I have two audiobook editions of All True to give away, thanks to audible.com. It's beautifully read by actor Jesse Einstein (sample here). Best two knock-knock jokes win them. Message me!
I'm the author of All True Not a Lie In It (Knopf Canada 2015, Ecco USA 2016) and The Old Familiar (Thistledown 2008).