Below is the first chapter of my book, Adaxial.
March 11, 2013
A short story I wrote for a contest:
July 9, 2009
This is my most recent short story. I just finished it yesterday. It is about Michael Telfer, his relationship with a girl named Jane Warner, and what happens because of that relationship.
It’s about 4500 words. I’ll post it here for your reading pleasure:
July 9, 2009
This is a (very) short story I wrote a few years ago, in 2006. It was a spur of the moment kind of thing, and I have never edited it. I’m not sure it’s any good, but if you’re interested in reading it, I’ve posted it here. It’s only 800 words, so it’ll probably take longer to open than it will to read.
March 23, 2009
It’s been about five years since I last spoke with Doug Robinson. He had more hair then, and fewer wrinkles. We’re talking in the council chambers inside the Town Hall. The room could easily double for a courtroom – it has a pair of raised chairs at one end that look as if a judge should be sitting there with a witness to a crime on his right. In the center is a large table.
Robinson is sitting at the table, telling me about Parrsboro. His eyes light up as he talks about the town he’s been the mayor of for 13 years. They’re still the same bright blue they’ve always been, the same as the waters of the Minas Basin that Parrsboro sits on. He could, and does, talk for hours about his town with little prompting necessary. He’s Parrsboro’s biggest fan, and he wasn’t even born there.
He was born and raised on a farm outside of London, Ontario. He spent 36 years in the navy, reaching the rank of Major before retiring and moving to Parrsboro with his wife, who is from the area. Looking for something to do during retirement, he ran for town council and eventually became the mayor. He’s now in the beginning of his fourth term as mayor, and is just as enthusiastic and optimistic as I remember.
The realtors office is up for sale.
December 6, 2008
This is a soundscape that I made for my radio journalism class. It follows some interesting characters through a drunken night in Parrsboro NS. It has a few flaws, but I’m still rather happy with it. Saturday Night in Parrsboro
December 6, 2008
The game is Rum Runner. You put in your coins, place your bets, and take a chance on winning something. Every so often a message appears on the screen. “You almost won $250” it says, or some other amount of money. The chance of winning is small, as everyone knows, but it doesn’t stop people from playing. And it certainly hasn’t stopped people from losing.
And losing a lot. VLT’s are a big source of revenue for the government in New Brunswick, and all that money has to come from somewhere, but it isn’t from the pockets of winners.
The government isn’t the only one to profit from these machines – the owners of the restaurants and bars that have them also get a percentage of the money from the machines. But that’s going to change by 2009. Under a new government policy, restaurants will lose any VLT’s that they currently have.
The idea is that VLT’s should only be in age-restricted areas, like bars and casinos. Restaurants aren’t age-restricted, so they shouldn’t have video lottery machines in them that can be accessed by underage kids.
So, the government is going to take all VLT’s out of restaurants in the province, while largely leaving alone bars and other establishments that are open to people over the age of 19.
But how will this affect those restaurants that are losing their machines?
Kathy Evans is the manager of Pizza Twice on Priestman Street.
“Well, we only get a small percentage of the revenue to begin with, but we will be losing some revenue, so we’ll just have to find ways to recoup that,” she said.
Sites that have VLT’s only get 20 per cent of whatever amount comes out of the machines, while the government keeps about 60 per cent. The rest goes to the Atlantic Lottery Corporation.
Pizza Twice is between two high schools – Fredericton High, and Ecole St. Anne. The bulk of their business comes from the lunch hour rush of students looking for a slice of pizza.
“I always have to keep an eye out that the kids who come in here don’t try and play the machines, not unless they’ve got the money to pay the fine we’ll get because of it. So, I guess that it’ll be a relief that we won’t have to watch out for them anymore, once they take them out.”
There aren’t many people who come to Pizza Twice just for the VLT’s, Evans says. But those who do are about the only thing she’ll miss when the machines are gone.
“The regulars who come here are usually nice to talk to, especially on slower days, but when they [the VLT’s] are taken out, they’ll probably stop coming. That would probably be the only sad thing about losing them.”