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Day of the Dead finds life in Prairie Fire

“Day of the Dead”, like many of my stories, takes a closer look at heartbreak, the rogue and hidden pathways of desire, and the messy inevitability of death. It’s one of my favourite stories from the past few years, and I’m thrilled that it will be coming out later this summer in Prairie Fire.

The story has earned an Honourable Mention in the 2014 Prairie Fire fiction contest, judged by Giller-longlisted author Elisabeth de Mariaffi, whose new novel The Devil You Know is getting great press.

“Day of the Dead” follows the intersecting lives of Caleb, a sensitive Maritime boy with grand visions of escape; his feisty dying grandmother, who still dreams of her own lost love; and Juan, a Mexican-Canadian orderly who supplies Caleb with a steady supply of pharmaceuticals in exchange for certain favours. It’s told in three interwoven narrative time frames, much like an earlier story, “You Were Loved.”

Special shout out to John Barton, whose generous feedback on an earlier draft of the story helped me find the missing magic ingredients.