Thursday, May 3, 2012 |
Every year, CBC Calgary teams up with Calgary Reads, a local literary advocacy group, to organize a giant used book sale. The proceeds from the sale will benefit Calgary Reads and their various programming initiatives. The 2012 sale will take place May 11-13 in Calgary. For more information on when to shop or how to get involved, head to the Calgary Reads website.
This sale got us thinking: have you ever found a book in an unexpected place that ended up having a profound effect on you? That's the question we posed to Linden MacIntyre
Linden MacIntyre is an award-winning journalist and author. Originally from Antigonish, Nova Scotia, MacIntyre has worked for the CBC since 1976 and currently co-hosts The Fifth Estate. In 1999, he gave writing fiction a try and in 2009, his second novel, The Bishop's Man, won the nation's most prestigious fiction prize, the Scotiabank Giller Prize. His follow-up novel, Why Men Lie was recently published by Random House Canada.
When we asked Linden about a surprising read, here's what he had to say, via email:
The room was sparsely furnished, a narrow bed, a small dresser and, nailed to the wall above the bed -- a sturdy wooden box, originally used for dynamite. It was a kind of catchall for personal effects including basic toiletries. But never, I was warned, leave shaving lotion in the open.
I hadn't brought much to read but a previous occupant of the room had abandoned two books there in the dynamite box -- Klondike by Pierre Berton and Martin Eden by Jack London. I read them both that summer, impressed by one, that a journalist and broadcast interviewer could write a fact-based book that read like fiction. I was equally inspired but daunted by the other, a novel that described the trials and tragedies that dog the process of creative writing. Combined, they nurtured a desire to publish. But Jack London's book stood for many years as a stark warning: creativity in the absence of stability, economic and emotional, can be fraught with hardship and, ultimately, peril.