Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Long Ago and Far Away: A Miramichi Family Memoir

Long Ago and Far Away: A Miramichi Family Memoir

Wayne Curtis

Nonfiction: Autobiography, New Brunswick, The Miramichi
240 pages
5 1/2" x 8 1/2" Trade Paperback
ISBN 978-1-897426-20-3
Available in September 2010
Order this book from: Nimbus Publishing (or 1-800-Nimbus9)
or Chapters or Pottersfield Press mail order.

A memoir set in the Miramichi, Long Ago and Far Away reflects how a family lived and prospered through the late 1880s, when Wayne Curtis's grandfather was a young man. The story follows the lives of Wayne and his father, chronicling Wayne's youth and adult years in rural New Brunswick. He brings back to life an extraordinary time and place and reflects upon the changes that have all but erased those days gone by. But the book is also a reminder of what it was like growing up in the backwoods of New Brunswick with all its joys and hardships.

The memoir tells the story of the rough and rowdy Miramichi of the past when the hunting and killing of wild animals was the norm and people struggled to survive off the land. Not natural hunters, both Wayne and his father wrestled with the idea of killing anything, but had to hunt to feed the family. In the old days of the Miramichi, guns were everywhere. But as Wayne matured into manhood, he grew away from hunting and would not kill anything bigger than a mosquito.

Long Ago and Far Away is a poetic yet honest look at growing up in very difficult times. It charts the growing pains involved in fighting the peer pressure from fellow countrymen who carried on with the old way of life. The story is a vivid and touching family history written by a skilled literary master willing to share the story of how he was shaped by the land, the community and the family that raised him.

Wayne Curtis was born and raised in the rural Miramichi community of Keenan. A high school dropout, he has worked at many jobs in the woods and in factories, including six years with General Motors. He has also been a storekeeper and a river guide. Returning to school during his adult years, he took night courses to get his high school diploma, followed by three years of university, eventually earning an honorary doctorate from St. Thomas University. Wayne has written for The Globe and Mailand The National Post and is the author of three novels, four books of short stories, and a screenplay for the CBC. Long Ago and Far Away is his thirteenth book.