Miranda Hill takes the Magic 8
8 random questions. From Canadian writers. To Canadian writers.
How does it work? We asked some of our favourite Canadian authors for the questions they always wished they were asked. We put those questions into a hat, randomly pull out 8, and send them to other Canadian writers who are up to the challenge. Every Magic 8 is different.
In my stories, there are lots of miracles, which the characters witness, but don’t necessarily participate in. This I attribute to being sent to Catholic school, even though my family wasn't Catholic. I was the little girl in the back pew, watching the other kids drink the wine that had been turned into blood.
I think my alter ego is the one most people see: fairly outgoing, laughing a lot, relatively stylish and good at a party. The other me, perhaps the real one, is the person who wears a toque, big sweater and work socks at her desk and is staring out the window and typing, reveling in the silence of an empty house. But the truth is that I could never just be one of these people. I need both of them to thrive.
Michael Crummey’s Paradise Deep, Newfoundland from Galore, because of the way the magic lives inside the everyday. A beautiful concept and a stunning book.
In university, I studied acting. I loved it and I had some knack for it, but I realized that what I really wanted was to try on the lives of all the characters. So I became a writer. In fiction, I get to play all the parts.
I’m a publishing nerd: I've always wanted to know what’s going on in the industry—even before I entered it. But I try to keep what I know or fear or predict separate from my stories, free of practical distractions—like how or if anyone will ever read what I write.
I’ve attended some really magical events as an audience member, in which the writers reading and the audience listening seemed to be weaving an experience between them. You don’t forget those moments, because they are so rare. As a writer, reading, I hope to be able to hold my end of that thread.
Sometimes, but I don’t dwell on it. I try to tell myself that going into a room and making up stories is a perfectly acceptable thing for a grown-up to do.
Miranda Hill is the author of Sleeping Funny. Her writing has been published by The New Quarterly, The Dalhousie Review and The Fiddlehead. She received her BA in drama from Queen's University, and her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia. Hill is the founder and executive director of Project Bookmark Canada. She lives in Hamilton with her husband Lawrence Hill.