News Podcast

Ep. #126: Carrie Snyder

Carrie Snyder lives in Waterloo, Ontario and is the author of two story collections, including The Juliet Stories, which was a finalist for Canada’s 2012 Governor General’s Award for Fiction. Her debut novel, Girl Runner will be published in Canada by House of Anansi on September 6 and in the United States via HarperCollins and in the U.K. via Two Roads in 2015. Snyder is also a dedicated recreational athlete, the mother of four children, and the author of the popular literary blog Obscure CanLit Mama. Ahead of her appearance at the Eden Mills Writers’ Festival on Sunday September 14, Snyder and I discuss her lovely home in Waterloo and its century-long history, a ghost house, oh, the places Carrie has lived in, birthday to birthday, the inspiration behind Girl Runner, running, writing a story collection like The Juliet Stories that reads like a novel, melding the present with the past in a double narrative structure, figuring out who characters are after you’ve written them, sibling couples and confusing spaces, the tangled and large Smart family tree, emotional conflict, whether or not we’re supposed to like Cora, Aganetha, womanhood and gender and sexual dynamics in sports and marketing, David Beckham, the shelf-life of athletes as competitors and public figures, amateur versus poor Olympians, athlete’s bodies, Aggie’s comfort with her own being and intellect, the parallels between Aganetha and Carrie, getting into running mid-life after thinking it was kinda dumb, the 25 KM Run for the Toad, hot yoga, learning how to swim when you’re not buoyant and in your mid-30s and then doing a triathlon within like a year of that, panicking in the pool, dredging up a near-drowning experience from your childhood, a fear of bicycling, bouncing between brief samples of the present and huge sections of historical memoir, the biological powers of women, the impact of child-rearing on artistic creativity and output, telling this quasi-fictional story about people who do special, unconventional things with their lives, the mystery and history of Girl Runner, always wanting to be a writer, sending letters to authors as a kid, learning the ins and outs of the publishing industry, if you want to write you have to keep doing it no matter what, responding to one’s calling, competing with yourself rather than your colleagues, Glad versus Aggie, American versus Canadian editors, House of Anansi and HarperCollins and Two Roads, researching for the next book, writing every day, My Struggle, book reviews, Obscure CanLit Mama, and then the finish line.

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