Author: markpaterson

What Have You Done?

writing May 19, 2016

A new story is out in the world and it’s always the best feeling. “What Have You Done?” is part of the Spring 2016 issue of The Puritan.


Keith’s Gum

The first week of school, we dressed in our summer clothes and the teachers kept all of the windows open. An easygoing feeling prevailed thanks to the spillover of hot August weather. We laughed easier, lunched on depanneur junk food, and went to class casually late—close enough to the bell that we avoided trouble for the most part, but long enough after its ringing to feel a slight measure of freedom, of power. While the weather had something to do with it, I think the main reason for the blithe mood was the fact that we were older, finally starting our last year of high school. On the Friday night, we capped off that first week of school by going to see Aliens.

Continue reading “What Have You Done” in The Puritan

The Pull of Julie Paul

books January 16, 2015

ThePullOfTheMoonJuliePaulIn The Pull of the Moon, Julie Paul’s short stories take place in the contemporary world, her characters derived from the everyday; mothers, fathers, boyfriends, neighbours, librarians. This seemingly conventional framework is, however, but a brilliant deception. There is an edge to Paul’s writing that steadily reveals itself in each story. Humour, sensuality, and a healthy measure of darkness are also important components of Paul’s entertaining and thoughtful stories.

Read the rest of my review of The Pull of the Moon by Julie Paul at The Rover.

Portrait of a Right-Handed Starting Pitcher

Uncategorized January 6, 2015


One of my favourite and most vivid Expos memories is “The Reggie Sanders Game,” the time, early in the 1994 season, when Pedro Martinez was perfect for seven and one-third innings at Olympic Stadium. It was the first of many occasions that I saw Martinez pitch live, but this one remains the most special. I remember little things about that night, like Lynn getting on the scoreboard just before the game began, when she had gone to say hello to her brother and his fiancé, who had tickets down in the VIPs. I remember the black and white checkered blouse Lynn wore and the sceptical smile that appeared on her face when she saw herself up on the jumbo screen. I remember that we brought tin foil-wrapped sandwiches in a brown paper bag from the sausage place on Monkland to eat for dinner during the game; mine with sauerkraut, hers without. I remember still being a little angry that they’d traded Delino DeShields, my favourite player, for Pedro Martinez. I remember being won over by this skinny 22-year old, by his performance and by his guts. I was also 22 years old. Of course I did not know at the time how great Pedro Martinez would turn out to be, but it sure is nice to close my eyes and see it again, the Hall of Famer as a young man.

“The Dad was Drinking” shortlisted for 3Macs carte blanche Prize!

Uncategorized November 13, 2014

I couldn’t be more pleased that “The Dad was Drinking” is in the running for this year’s 3Macs carte blanche Prize. It’s also great to be among some very talented fellow finalists, Larissa Andrusyshyn (whose work I’ve admired for many years, going all the way back to the Wednesday’s Child days at Ciné Express) and Sheryl Curtis and Elaine Kennedy. None other than Lisa Moore is serving as juror, and the winner will be announced at the QWF Awards Gala on November 18, 2014.

2014 3Macs carte blanche Prize finalists.


Update: Congratulaions to Elaine Kennedy and Sheryl Curtis, winners of the 2014 3Macs carte blanche Prize for their translation of “It’s Late, Doctor Schweizter” by Didier Leclair.


Uncategorized January 24, 2014

lenny and squiggySo imagine my surprise and disappointment after coming of age and finding that kissing the air and biting one’s own palm had fallen out of fashion as signifiers for the appreciation of beauty.