In February, 2012, as I worked to complete my book, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I was thrust into a world of MRIs, visits to the cancer clinic, operations, radiation. I was afraid. Yet, to my surprise, I found myself writing in a more focused way than ever before, with more efficiency and less drama. Even on bad days, I headed to my desk. By disappearing into writing, I had a refuge, and to my surprise the stories I had been having trouble finishing finished themselves. The cancer may have nailed me, but I really felt, as I sat writing under that apple tree, that I was nailing it back.
Shaena Lambert’s stories have appeared in a number of magazines, including The Walrus and have been chosen three years running for Best Canadian Stories. Her recent collection of short stories Oh My Darling was a Globe and Mail’s Top 100 Books of The Year for 2013. Her previous book of stories, The Falling Woman, has also been a Globe and Mail Best Book of the Year and her first novel, Radiance, was a finalist for the Rogers Writers’ Trust Award and the Ethel Wilson Prize. She has been a fiction mentor with Humber College and The Writer’s Studio of Simon Fraser University. Her website is www.shaenalambert.com She lives in Vancouver, B.C.
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