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Dedication

So far 2018 has been a quiet year for author notes, as we’ve all been quite busy with other projects. If you want to know what I’ve been up to, click here to read my stories about the real people currently reshaping the future of energy. I don’t usually remark on book dedications –– those […]

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Listen to The Grasslands

I find it very strange to hear words I’ve written read back to me by someone else… especially someone who actually makes them sound good. It’s doubly odd to get as invested in a story that I wrote… as if I didn’t write it. The experience of having a tale told to you is completely […]

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The Gift of Stripes

The date was October 23rd and our house on Lake Louise Boulevard in Waterloo, Ontario was empty, the only sign of our life there a forgotten black Umbra over-the-door hanger that a real estate agent would find later. The oversized Atlas Van Lines truck had set off mid-afternoon, likely a relief for our neighbours. Three […]

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The Real Colette

At this point, my obsessive relationship with HMCS Sackville is reasonably well documented. It began when I based a Defense Command corvette on her, then escalated in 2013, when I spent Battle of the Atlantic week with her in Halifax. After that, Sackville turned up in Champions, swimming through Newfoundland’s coastal waters with Alex in […]

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Nancy Wake

In 1994, Nancy Wake auctioned off her war medals for profit. Some said this was to pay for booze, others suggested it was part of a feud with the Museum of Australia, but one friend and neighbor offered an explanation which I choose to believe is most accurate: she did it because someone told her […]

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Editing Fray

When you’re bashing your head against the keyboard and hoping your first draft will come out okay, the last thing you may want to hear is a lecture about how editing is the most important part of the writing process. Writing, on its own, seems difficult enough. But editing and rewrites are vital to the […]

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The Year Was 2017…

I don’t get embarrassed about baby pictures. I don’t understand why anyone would –– there’s no shame in looking like a child when you happen to be one. I do, however, get very embarrassed about my earliest writing. No matter how old you are when you start, it’s a safe bet that your first stories won’t be […]

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Everything Begins to Fray

Shortly after her abilities were revealed to two worlds in 1919, Lady Emily began making public appeals to save the children of the savages. She believed it was the British Empire’s duty to send troops to rescue those genetically-enhanced innocents, so that they could be spared lives of slavery and given the chance to become […]

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Unrequited Horizons

In the summer of 2011, I nearly gave up writing altogether. That seems a bit silly now, considering all the stories that have happened since, but at the time we were winding up both Defense Command and His Majesty’s New World, and all I had left to work with was a loose collection of ideas […]

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De-Kentaminated

The pun was so bad. Sitting in the passenger seat of Matt LeDrew’s car as we pulled away from St. John’s Airport, I was immediately reminded of just what sort of nemesis Engen’s founder really is: the kind who invents shockingly bad puns. And apparently this particular pun had been put into service at Sci-Fi […]

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Damage Report

Let’s be honest: fiction writing can be a pretty antisocial business. From the research that goes into crafting a story, to the time spent at the keyboard tapping it out, to the hours of editing, authors are obliged to spend a great deal of time locked inside their own minds. This is why some people […]

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Just Plain Late

It’s quite impossible for me to be fashionably late, so this week I’m going to be just plain late. As previously mentioned, I’m going to turn up at Sci Fi on the Rock this weekend, but I won’t be on the ground for the entire event. The convention kicks off on Friday afternoon and wraps up […]

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Return to the Rock

Around a decade ago, a new annual tradition began in Newfoundland: Sci-Fi on the Rock. The first convention of its kind in my homeland, it started as a day-long event in Mount Pearl (the city that neighbors St. John’s), and I was lucky enough to be the first guest. That trip was a bit of […]

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And We’re Back

It’s been more than a year since we ended the Champions of 1942 on a rather unapologetic cliffhanger, and the only penance I can offer for that slight is that there’ll be no waiting between installments of the Champions of 1943. Today, all five novellas have launched across all major ebook services. Getting here has […]

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The Last Ship

Navy stories are tough to get right – particularly in the modern era. The setup usually sounds appealing: an ensemble of characters working together within a ship that is a character all on its own. But when you get into the practicalities of storytelling, the complications are plenty. Those characters, for instance, are stratified by […]

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Fashion for Champions

You learn a lot when you moderate writing panels. While I was appearing as a guest at the Toronto Trek convention around ten years ago, I chaired an author panel about writing female characters. It was there that I picked up a piece of advice from one of my colleagues, which I remember to this […]

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The Cowb’ys

His Majesty’s New World only came together as a series when I realized it could include Newfoundlanders. It’s been a few years since I explained this, but it bears repeating: as an MA student, I’d done all sorts of research that helped inform the alternate history of the series. However, the intricacies of a world […]

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Sound Checks

I am no musician. The only instrument I ever learned to play was the recorder (in elementary school) and that was terrible. I can’t sing worth a damn — as Jacqui once reported, I failed even to belt out “Old Man River” with Boba Fett when we were both guests at a convention. Music is […]

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Return to the New World

Mountains, foothills, and wide open prairies –– by now, readers of His Majesty’s New World and Champions are familiar with the landscape of the planet that Britain and the United States began colonizing in 1881. Whether it be the Royal Newfoundland Regiment marching into the unknown in 1919, Alex and Stephanie fighting Scourge in 1942, […]

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Ready, Aye, Ready.

The first thing you have to understand about Canada’s navy: it began with an obsolete cruiser named Rainbow. When the Royal Canadian Navy was first founded in 1910, Prime Minister Sir Wilfrid Laurier found himself in a difficult position. At the time, Britain and Germany were engaged in a Mahanian naval race, building Dreadnoughts (and […]

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