A Writer’s Life

The Margaret Laurence Lectures

Publisher: Emblem Editions
For anyone who loves great literature -- or aspires to write it -- this is an essential collection, full of insight, wisdom, humour, and candour from Canada's most important and beloved literary figures.

For the past twenty-five years, the Writers' Trust of Canada's annual lecture series, the Margaret Laurence Memorial Lecture, has invited some of Canada's most prominent authors to discuss the theme of "A Writer's Life" in front of their peers. Hugh MacLennan, Mavis Gallant, Timothy Findley, W.O. Mitchell, Pierre Berton, P.K. Page, Dorothy Livesay, Alistair MacLeod, and Margaret Atwood, among others, have shared the personal challenges they faced in forging their
own paths as writers, at a time when such a career was still unusual in this country. Intimate, frank, and revealing in tone, their lectures -- collected for the first time in celebration of the series' twenty-fifth anniversary -- provide a unique account of a period when a national writing community was just being formed, and give us unprecedented access to the heroes and heroines of Canadian literature as they share their insights into their work, the profession of writing, the growing canon of our literature, and the cultural history of our country.

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Hugh MacLennan
1987

It is a very great honour you have done me in asking me to give the first of the Margaret Laurence Lectures. Profoundly, I wish it were not so. It seems a grim jest of God that she should be gone and I should be here, for I was born some eighteen years before she came into the world. I...
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