Sunday, February 27, 2011



If you're out there, I've been on the road for two months so have only just received your forwarded letter. I thank you for it, will reply and hope you're okay...

Saturday, February 26, 2011


Bookbits interview:

This was a Toronto interview I really enjoyed. Not sure about my cleavage floating listlessly through space...

Sunday, February 20, 2011


S and M

That's what Christopher Plummer calls his film 'The Sound of Music' in his delicious memoir. 'In Spite Of Myself' is actually a book I bought when it came out in hardback a few years ago. I'd had Plummer in my head for a film I was writing (about a charismatic womaniser in his later years). Then, the other day, I had to go to Random House in Toronto to sign my memoir, and Plummer had to go to Random House to sign his memoir and - voila - I now have a signed paperback, which I re-read last night around 3am. If you've maybe read the Patti Smith autobiography and are looking for another vital life story told in a singularly mad voice, do pick this up. In the pictorial, amongst snaps with Natalie Wood and Julie Andrews, he has labelled a photo of himself as a young man in Quebec: "Me as a repulsive youth of indeterminate age".

Friday, February 18, 2011


This video made me cry:

What an inspiring woman. What an eloquent defense of Planned Parenthood.

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Emma's Mix Tape Feb 2011

On the train from Toronto to Montreal, I made an ipod playlist of songs that were introduced to me by great friends, family, mentors, boyfriends past and present. They were originals and covers, classics and obscurities, but they had to be songs I'd never heard before I met them. I picture them as donations from people who cared about me (the donatee is in parenthesis):
Another Girl Another Planet - The Only Ones (Julie)
And She Was - Talking Heads (Julie)
Bad Weather - The Supremes (Robin)
Hurdy Gurdy Man -Eartha Kitt (Joe)
Shangri-La - The Kinks (Grace)
State Of Independence - Chrissie Hynde covering Donna Summer!! (Barbara)
Laura Marling- My Manic And I (Colin)
Darkness On The Edge Of Town - Bruce Spingsteen (Richard)
Mockingbirds - Grant Lee Buffalo (Marc)
Heard It Through The Grapevine - The Slits (Ryan)
Long Gone Before Daylight - The Cardigans (Sassica)
You Said Something - PJ Harvey (SB)
With Every Heartbeat - Robyn (SB)
Ecstatic - Mos Def (Mum)
Overload - Sugababes (Lisa)
A Case Of You - Joni Mitchell (Mum)
Pilgrim Chapter 33 - Kris Kristofferson (Dad)
Reckoner - Radiohead (Daniel)
Pi - Kate Bush (Daniel)
There's some people here I haven't spoken to in a decade or more. There's a friend or two I fell out with, badly. My life has been so compartmentalized, it was radical to put these voices from long ago and far away all together on one list. I saw a lot of emotional snapshots - great ones - music being a stronger sense-memory to me than scent.

Monday, February 14, 2011


The Lake and Stars!5759991/agencies-refuse-to-work-with-designers-who-hire-plus+size-models
Maayan Zilberman is one of my best friends, not just a great designer but a kind (and sensible) woman, so I'm not surprised she's making her voice heard over this.

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Celluloid Dreams

We're staying opposite the best video store I've ever seen. Every night I've been staying in, rewatching and discovering films. My favourite of the last five years, in no particular order:
Animal Kingdom
Fish Tank
Let The Right One In
Sita Sings The Blues
Joan Rivers - A Piece of Work
Client 9 (this one, above all others, is brutally painful to watch)

Saturday, February 12, 2011


So what?

What a sensible article by Julie Burchill:
Thankfully some of her advice did sink in when I was a teen. She taught me that you must point out your own flaws before anyone else does. That's been important, especially when it came to writing a memoir. When a reviewer gasped that I'm obsessive and self-centred - I did say that about myself in the book. I'm not proud of it (at all. I think the book makes that pretty damn clear) but I am self-aware, and working to make it right. Because of what Julie taught me back when I was a teen, it's been surprisingly easy to accept that any bad reviews are bad reviews, not of my writing, but of my personality. Julie has a really interesting chip missing that we'd all benefit from losing.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011


Hadley Freeman on Planned Parenthood

Hadley Freeman is a really cool chick - she may also be the best newspaper columnist out there.



 Ever since I saw Jah Wobble play at the Royal Opera House in London (for the uninitiated, he's the former bassist of John Lydon's post Sex Pistol's band PIL), I've been thinking about high/low culture and what a happy marriage it can be. I'm not saying which is the "high" culture and which the "low" in this equation (honestly, my mind was blown when he brought on the Japanese flower arranger to set up enormous flowers around the band as they played, until they were completely obscured). This week I was sent reviews of my memoir from Macleans (the Canadian equivalent of Time) and from Laineygossip (a gossip blog). Both were serious, well written and insightful - but guess which one had the terrible tabloid heading? Interesting.

Sunday, February 06, 2011



I know I'm pretty late to this, but Emma Donoghue's 'Room' is exquisite. Genuinely a thriller, and genuinely a work of art. If anyone were to adapt the book as a movie (which would be difficult) I think Sarah Polley would be an interesting candidate to direct.

Friday, February 04, 2011



Was having a lovely time here, even before Kate Carraway's review of my book in The Globe and Mail. My goodness, I owe this lady a drink...
In less self-obsessed news, I finally got round to watching 'Animal Kingdom'. Have to say, it's my favourite crime movie since 'Badlands' (and that's a film I marked with a tattoo!)

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