In these fifteen searingly honest personal essays, debut author Susan Olding takes us on an unforgettable journey into the complex heart of being human. Each essay dissects an aspect of Olding's life experience?from her vexed relationship with her father to her tricky dealings with her female peers; from her work as a counsellor and teacher to her persistent desire, despite struggles with infertility, to have children of her own. In a suite of essays forming the emotional climax of the book, Olding bravely recounts the adoption of her daughter, Maia, from an orphanage in China, and tells us the story of Maia's difficult adaptation to the unfamiliar state of being loved.
Written with as much lyricism, detail, and artfulness as the best short stories, the essays in Pathologies provide all the pleasures of fiction combined with the enrichment derived from the careful presentation of fact. Susan Olding is indisputably one of Canada's finest new writers, one who has taken the challenging, much-underused form of the literary essay and made it her own.
About the author
Susan Olding was named one of The New Quarterlyâ??s â??Most Loved Living Writersâ? alongside authors including Margaret Atwood and Alice Munro. Her poetry and prose have appeared widely in literary journals and anthologies across Canada and the United States. She has been a finalist for a National Magazine Award, two Western Magazine Awards, and a CBC Literary Award; she is also a two-time winner of the Event Creative Non-fiction Contest and a winner of the Prairie Fire Non-fiction Contest. Susan earned a B.A. in Philosophy from the University of Toronto, a Bachelor of Education from Queenâ??s University, and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia. She has been a frequent contributor to several discussion groups, workshops, and web resources for adoptive parents. Her work has also appeared in numerous anthologies. Susan Olding currently lives with her family in Kingston, Ontario.
- Winner, CNFC Readers' Choice Award
- Long-listed, British Columbia's National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction
- Long-listed, Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction
"Susan Olding's work combines the visceral force of lived experience with the nuance and narrative drive of the best fiction. These essays are much more than essays, tracing the path from our pathologies to our deepest mysteries and fears and our most cherished hopes."--Nino Ricci
"Susan Olding's work combines the visceral force of lived experience with the nuance and narrative drive of the best fiction. These essays are much more than essays, tracing the path from our pathologies to our deepest mysteries and fears and our most cherished hopes."?Nino Ricci