Journal Reflections: Doug Gibson, Brian Francis, and Susan Swan

The Word On The Street Toronto’s online Journal Reflections auction continues! Visit to bid on original works, and previously unpublished material from some of your favourite authors and illustrators. Auction bidding closes on October 8, 2013.

Yesterday our blog featured excerpts and images from the journal of Anne Michaels. Today we are happy to share with you the works of Brian Francis, Doug Gibson, and Susan Swan.

__b4e391422D2fc52D47862Da8602D93aa3cde1e06BriansBrian Francis‘ first novel, Fruit, was a 2009 Canada Reads finalist. His second novel, Natural Order, was a Toronto Star and kobo “Best Book of 2011.” The novel was also a CBC Bookie Award finalist and is currently nominated for a 2012 Ontario Library Association Evergreen Award.

I called my mom the other night. She told me to hold while she grabbed her list. She does this sometimes because, at 79, she has a tendency to forget the important things she wants to tell me.

(from The Book of Signs, previously unpublished work)



__826dd12f2D27b72D4b652D91e22D2572e411c551gibsogDoug Gibson was born in Scotland and raised in a small village that has inspired some of the childhood memories in his Moleskine jottings. (Could there be a book here?) His career in book publishing ran from 1968 until 2008, and he spent 25 years as a Publisher, first of Macmillan of Canada, and later (1988-2004) of McClelland & Stewart.

Throughout his career he continued his work as an editor, and his collaboration with many of Canada’s finest writers inspired his recent literary memoir, STORIES ABOUT STORYTELLERS: Publishing Alice Munro, Robertson Davies, Alistair MacLeod, Pierre Trudeau And Others.

Las Vegas and Monte Carlo hold no attraction for me – not after the excitement of the Wheel of Fortune at the Dunlop Flower Shop!




Journalist, feminist, novelist, activist, teacher, Susan Swan’s impact on the Canadian literary and political scene has been far-reaching.  Her critically acclaimed fiction has been published in twenty countries. Susan Swan’s novel, The Western Light, was published in the fall of 2012 and shares a narrator with her international bestseller, The Wives of Bath. It was nominated as one of the best books of 2012 fiction and non-fiction by the Ontario Library Association. It is currently being made into a movie.

Give me some words, the dancer said. I had a lot to learn –

“Give me some words, will you?” The choreographer sitting at the table with me said in our communal kitchen in Toronto’s Annex. It was 1976…….


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