Spindle Magazine Issue 6

Page 14

Issue 6 // 2012

OTW

“I wrote my first book on green and purple construction paper for my father’s birthday when I was three. It was called The Case of the Big Bam. It featured stories about animate trucks that enjoyed going to the market, pigs eating apples quickly, and hikers being frightened of a cave that went “bam.” I wrote some letters backwards and spelled “were” “wrrrr.””

From such inauspicious beginnings, Jeremy Hanson-Finger has gone on to become one of the big hitters in the Toronto literary scene. Hailing from Victoria, British Columbia, Jeremy moved east to attend university in Ottawa before finally settling in Toronto. He’s something of a literary renaissance man, making a living as an editor by day, working on his own novel by night, while also finding the time to launch and co-edit his own literary magazine. ‘We strongly believe that established Canadian literary magazines ignore the humorous and satirical tradition in Canadian literature, and we want to provide an outlet for writers who aren’t afraid to be funny and serious at the same time to publish their work.’ So Dragnet Magazine was born and is going strong, having just published its fifth issue. But launching a magazine and trying to make it as a fiction writer isn’t exactly easy:

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‘It seems more difficult than ever to make a living solely as a writer. And when you do any sort of job to support yourself that requires mental exertion you often don’t have a whole lot of brain energy left for being creative.’ When he does find time to write, Jeremy describes his novel as ‘an inversion of the typical detective novel in that rather than being from the point of view of a professional detective, it is from the points of view of several characters who have encountered an amateur detective. It is more about the amateur detective’s character and how and why she investigates than the murder that spurred the investigation.’ Dragnet’s future faces similar challenges to any other magazine - but Jeremy is upbeat: ‘Dragnet collectively are a little bummed we didn’t get a Canada Council grant this year, but there’s always next year. Over the course of the year we will be looking into other revenue sources, and working on increasing our exposure outside of the Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal literary communities.’ As for his creative future, Jeremy tells me ‘after I finish my novel, whenever that is, I want to embrace my plotless predilections and just work on a series of moments and see where they take me’ Dragnet can be viewed at dragnetmag.net

words

Thomas Dearnley-Davison Illustration

Nick Alston


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