Sunday, September 23, 2012
The wonderful old Morrin Centre, which mainly serves the
small English population of Quebec City, welcomed me.
I spoke about The Pilgrim in the beautiful library.
The balcony is crammed with books.
The splendid and attentive, audience enjoyed it all.
Afterwards, many queued to get their books signed.
I signed a book for Babs, wife to my old BCS buddy,
Then I was interviewed by the Quebec Chronicle
Saturday, September 15, 2012
Set in 1896 along the isolated Lower North Shore of Quebec,
this page-turning romantic novel follows the adventures --
many harrowing -- of a novice clergyman by the name of Jack Alford.
The character is inspired by Paul Almond's real uncle, Reverend Jack
Almond. Paul Almond, now 81, summers in Shigawake, in the Gaspé,
and for the past ten years there, he has been writing a
not-so-fictional account of his family's 200-year
long pioneering history in this province. This latest book, called
The Pilgrim, was launched today in Quebec City.
Link to interview: http://www.cbc.ca/breakaway
Monday, August 27, 2012
The Shigawake Music Festival, which runs concurrently with
the Bonaventure County Agricultural Fair, is helping
to put Shigawake on the map – as well as the tremendous
sales of The Alford Saga.
Meghan Clinton, the petite organiser, thought it up,
works all year getting bands, then is johnny-on-the-spot
throughout, adjusting mikes, making sure recording artists are
happy, and just running everything.
A favourite of the crowd was singer Katie Moore.
Outside, crowds packed the fair to watch volleyballs...
See the horse haul, check the prize-winning vegetables,
buy raffle tickets for paintings, and generally
After sunset, the music continued...
Saturday, August 18, 2012
Always an adventure!
This year, Paul and Ted won 16 prizes with their vegetables
— among which eight took firsts.
Paul, his cousin Elton, former DG of Shigawake, and
Ted display more firsts.
Elton was proud of his turnips.
Edith Mackenzie, Treasurer of St Paul who
kept track of Pilgrim Sales, won first for her
needlework and doll among the many crafts.
Next came time for Ted and James to load the goats
for their judging.
Grandson James helped unload Fran and Marie
from the back seat of their trusty goat-mobile.
Arriving at the fair, Fran and Marie were astonished
to find next door two attractive, but
much younger, competitors.
They met for a confab...
...and Fran checks the competition.
Again awarded FIRST PRIZE (fourth year) (Last year,
they ate their ribbons, causing a kerfuffle!)
Paul & Ted untie goats: time to go.
Marie wonders what's holding Fran back.
They like going for a ride!
Safely back to the Old Homestead with their proud
ribbon still attached.
Home sweet home!
Monday, July 30, 2012
The Shigawake Municipal Hall was filled for my last book
launch of the week.
Deacon Pat Hayes introduced me...
...and later posed with me for a shot.
Amazing so many lined up for signatures.
Enid Legros, the Coast’s most distinguished ceramic
artist, came to get a book.
Grandson James Elkins came again.
Cousin Gloria Hayes, head of the Bonaventure Women’s
Institute and frequent hostess of the Almonds, and
former basketball coach John Affleck.
Octogenarian Sarah Mackenzie, a pillar of St. Paul’s,
gets her book signed.
Kenneth Duguay, Mayor of Shigawake for more
than a quarter century, got his book signed as
wife Sarah watched.
The church of St Mary Magdalen and St. Andrew’s United Church
got together to hold their launch of The Pilgrim in this
splendid small Anglican church, which ended up, even on a Sunday
warm Gaspesian evening, hosting a fine turnout.
I spoke about my aim of finishing book number eight this summer,
and alerted everyone that there were four more books coming:
The Chaplain next year, two more the following year, and
the eighth book in 2015.
Number one organiser and a direct descendant of the Deserter,
the dynamic Joan Dow is known throughout the Gaspe Coast
for having founded the British Heritage Village in New Richmond.
This year again, she raised a goodly sum for St Andrew’s by
selling many dozens of books among her parish of eight worshippers
and other readers across Canada.
Equally dynamic, Gail Martin made a goodly sum
for the United Church.
June Martin, Gail’s sister, married many times and now single,
came on her “cadillac”, a powered wheel chair, to buy books.
Dr. Danielle Cyr, the linguistics professor recently retired from
Toronto’s York University, edited the only Micmac dictionary
published this century. She was thus a great help with
The Deserter, as well as my other books.
Garry Lovatt, who works with the venerable Archdeacon in
administering several churches in the region, talked to Joan
Dow’s highly-qualified journalist and executive daughter,
Cynthia, and Tom Duncan.
Plentiful refreshments are the norm on the Gaspe Coast. The Rector’s
Warden Shirley Duncan, former director of the huge Eastern Shores
School Board, helped the hard-working volunteers.