2 min read

Wayward Missives

The sky meeting the sea in daylight, light blue against dark blue.

Dear Friends,

I’m writing from the ocean. That’s probably incorrect, but it’s what it feels like: sky and water meeting, hazy blue mountains in our wake.

I’m actually on a ferry bound to Nanaimo from somewhere north of Vancouver, and I’m in a group of marvelous, brilliant people, all heading to the Wayward Retreat on Quadra Island. Between us and it is a 2 hour drive and another ferry, and once on the island we won’t have cellular data or any kind of internet, just a lone landline connecting us to people outside the retreat.

I've accumulated so much news since last I wrote – undertaken truly gigantic changes to my life – and I kept thinking I’d find time somewhere in the last few weeks to write about it all before vanishing into the wilderness for a week. I wasn't able to. It felt important to do so – but that importance started to gain mass and gravity and distorted the mental terrain around it to the point I couldn't seem to begin.

So, in brief: I resigned my position teaching Creative Writing at the University of Ottawa, started a new, very different job that I'm wildly excited about, and I'll tell you more about it next week.

The ferry’s close to docking. I’m looking forward to writing, and talking, and foraging, and watching birds, and I hope to carry some of that back from the island, something beautiful and easing to share. I hope to be refreshed and replenished. And in the meantime I wish you all deep, joyful nourishment wherever you can find it.

All best,


Selfie from a ferry, in which I'm wearing sunglasses and a scrunched velvet headband, with water and mountains behind me.


  • If you've always wanted a double-signed copy of This Is How You Lose the Time War – a copy signed by both Max Gladstone and myself – you're in luck: there are about 10 such copies at Argo Bookshop in Montreal, and they will ship anywhere in the world if you pay the appropriate shipping cost in addition to the cost of the book. There might also be a few double-signed copies left at Perfect Books in Ottawa, but I haven't had a chance to check with them recently.
  • If you're new to this newsletter – welcome! So glad to have you here.