Saanich poet Patrick Lane is shortlisted for a Governor General’s Literary Award, it was announced Wednesday.
Lane made the shortlist for his poetry collection Washita (Harbour Publishing). It examines such experiences as “the loss of a parent, the breakdown of a body, the perversion of nature, the acquiring of wisdom.”
Washita follows Lane’s best-selling novel Red Dog, Red Dog (2008) and his award-winning memoir, There Is a Season (2004). His book Collected Poems was published in 2011.
The other poetry finalists are:
• Kayla Czaga of Vancouver with For Your Safety Please Hold On (Nightwood Editions)
• Liz Howard of Toronto for Infinite Citizen of the Shaking Tent (McClelland & Stewart/Penguin Random House Canada)
• M. Travis Lane of Fredericton for Crossover (Cormorant Books)
• Robyn Sarah of Montreal for My Shoes Are Killing Me (Biblioasis)
Rachel Cusk, who was born in Canada and lives in London, is on the short list for the Governor General’s fiction prize for Outline (HarperCollins Publishers Ltd.). Cusk also made the shortlist Monday for the $100,000 Scotiabank Giller Prize.
Other fiction finalists include two-time Governor General’s award winner Guy Vanderhaeghe of Saskatoon, who made the cut for Daddy Lenin and Other Stories (McClelland & Stewart/Penguin Random House Canada).
The short list is rounded out by Helen Humphreys of Kingston, Ont., for The Evening Chorus (HarperCollins), Toronto’s Kate Cayley for How You Were Born (Pedlar Press) and Clifford Jackman of Guelph, Ont., with The Winter Family (Random House Canada/Penguin Random House Canada).
The Canada Council for the Arts administers the awards, which honour writers in both official languages and in seven categories.Winners in each category receive $25,000.
This year’s non-fiction, English-language short list includes former finalist Ted Bishop of Edmonton for The Social Life of Ink: Culture, Wonder and Our Relationship with the Written Word (Viking/Penguin Random House Canada).
CBC correspondent David Halton of Ottawa is on the list for a book on his dad, Dispatches From the Front: Matthew Halton, Canada’s Voice at War (McClelland & Stewart/Penguin Random House Canada).
St. John’s journalist Michael Harris made the cut for Party of One: Stephen Harper and Canada’s Radical Makeover (Viking/Penguin Random House Canada).
Aboriginal literature scholar Armand Garnet Ruffo of Kingston, Ont., is a contender with Norval Morrisseau: Man Changing into Thunderbird (Douglas & McIntyre).
And Vancouver bee expert Mark L. Winston is a finalist for Bee Time: Lessons from the Hive (Harvard University Press).
Other notable nominees for a 2015 Governor General’s Literary Award include Montreal’s Donald Winkler, who is also on the Giller short list, for translating the short story collection Arvida by Samuel Archibald.
For the Governor General’s honour, he’s a finalist in the category of translation (French to English) for Montcalm & Wolfe: Two Men Who Forever Changed the Course of Canadian History (HarperCollins) by Roch Carrier.
His competition includes:
• David Scott Hamilton of Montreal for Captive (House of Anansi Press), by Claudine Dumont
• Lazer Lederhendler of Montreal for The Lake (Anansi), by Perrine Leblanc
• Rhonda Mullins of Montreal for Twenty-One Cardinals (Coach House Books), by Jocelyne Saucier
• And Susan Ouriou and Christelle Morelli of Calgary for Stolen Sisters: The Story of Two Missing Girls, Their Families and How Canada Has Failed Indigenous Women (HarperCollins) by Emmanuelle Walter
This year, 970 titles in the English-language categories and 559 in the French-language categories were submitted.
— Adrian Chamberlain and The Canadian Press