Genni Gunn

Genni Gunn

    Genni Gunn is a writer, musician and translator. Born in Trieste, Italy, she came to Canada when she was eleven. She has published nine books: three novels – Solitaria, Tracing Iris and Thrice Upon a Time, two short story collections – Hungers and On The Road, two poetry collections – Faceless and Mating in Captivity, and translated from the Italian two collections of poems. Two of her books have also been translated into Italian.

    Her work has been shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, the John Glassco Translation Award and the Gerald Lampert Award, and her novel Tracing Iris is being made into a feature film. Her opera Alternate Visions premiered in Montreal in 2007 and was projected in a simulcast at The Western Front in Vancouver. Before she turned to writing full-time, Genni toured Canada extensively with a variety of bands (bass guitar, piano and vocals). Since then, she has performed at hundreds of readings and writers’ festivals. She lives in Vancouver, where she teaches half-time at Kwantlen Polytechnic University.

    From Genni Gunn

    How do you balance writing, teaching and all the other things you do? In short: how DO you do it?

    First of all, for context, let me say that I am the type of person who could never do one thing only. No matter how much I protest (weakly) that I have too much to do, the fact is that I thrive on activity and challenge. So I am constantly taking on new ventures, thinking up new projects, saying yes to everything, and then figuring out how to do it all.

    So, that said, how do I balance it all?

    My main activities are writing (and this entails a variety of projects and genres), teaching creative writing, manuscript evaluation and…

    June 2011 / Comment icon9 comments

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    What was your inspiration for Solitaria?

    The inspiration for the book came in the form of a question I wanted to explore. Here is the background that led to it. A relative of mine – an old aunt who lives in Italy – appeared to me to have been forgotten by everyone in her old age, not physically – she had excellent care and contact – but emotionally. Like Piera, the protagonist of Solitaria, my old aunt felt that she didn’t deserve to be abandoned in this way. She believed she had been very generous throughout her life – and she had – and had looked…

    June 2011

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