Tag Archives: Canada

Patrick Gale, Eve McBride and truth at the Swindon Festival of Literature

7 May

Patrick Gale and Eve McBride

Patrick Gale and Eve McBride

“I come from a long line of priests. I owe a huge debt to the King James Bible. The language got under my skin. My Father spoke like a King James Bible. Today, I’m a doubter,” said novelist Patrick Gale.

“Mental illness overshadowed my life growing up. Our characters can go just like that from mental illness. I think that’s why I became a writer. I could escape into other people by writing.”

He was in conversation, yesterday, with novelist Eve McBride, fellow truth teller and lover of dogs.

“I suspect we both want to talk about dogs,” said Patrick earlier on Twitter; Eve’s Twitter name is 2bluedanes. “I have a dog in all my books,” said Patrick. Eve’s book, No Worst, There is None, explores the healing of grief from all angles, including by dog. Continue reading

Bruce Fogle: Discovering a place in the natural world at the Swindon Festival of Literature

6 May
Bruce Fogle

Bruce Fogle

6 May 2015. Discovering a place in the natural world at the Swindon Festival of Literature or:  Don’t Judge a book by its cover.

“I dressed and went for a walk – determined not to return until I took in what Nature had to offer.”
 – Raymond Carver, This Morning.

Suffering for my art – yet stoic in the execution of my Festival Chronicle duties I arrived at Swindon Arts Centre in a sodden and sorry state after the third drenching of the day and it was still only midday.

I’d been dispatched there by Festival Chronicle HQ to cover the Swindon Literature Festival appearance of Bruce Fogle – and if the name sounds familiar you’re not wrong – but more of that later.

Bruce Fogle is a former zoo worker, practicing vet and best-selling writer. Not on the face of it the kind of ‘thing’ that would be high on my list of things with which to engage – I’m not exactly at one with the natural world at the best of times. And especially not after mice in the conservatory, rats infesting the loft and more than the occasional frog startling me in the garden. Or maybe that’s more a case of me startling the frogs. Anyway. This all goes to prove the old adage about not judging a book by its cover – literally in this case because, despite my trepidation, Mr Fogle’s talk turned out to be an enchanting prequel – his words – to his book Barefoot at the Lake: A boyhood summer in Cottage Country. Continue reading