The Next Chapter

Why essayist Durga Chew-Bose feels a connection to fellow Montreal writer Mavis Gallant

The author of Too Much and Not the Mood feels the city they were born in informs their writing, even though both lived and wrote elsewhere.
Durga Chew-Bose writes for Hazlitt, GO, BuzzFeed and The Guardian, among other publications. (Hazlitt)

Durga Chew-Bose is a Brooklyn-based, Montreal-born writer. Her first book, Too Much and Not the Mood, is a collection of personal essays exploring what it means to be a young, first-generation writer today. Chew-Bose feels a strong connection to fellow Montreal-born writer Mavis Gallant.

I'm a Montreal-born writer, and another Montreal-born writer I feel a nearness to is Mavis Gallant. I lived in the U.S. for almost 13 years, and when I first discovered Mavis Gallant's writing I realized she was Montreal-born. I immediately loved the idea of a Montreal writer abroad. I loved reading her short stories that are detailed and particular to how she perceives the world. I do believe somewhere deep down they're formed from being from Montreal, which is how I approach my own essay writing. I think her origin story has a lot to do with what it's like to see the world once you've left where you're from. 

Durga Chew-Bose's comments have been edited and condensed.