An exciting week, this, and its only Tuesday. Monday, I connected with the Sunnybrook Foundation to begin a donor-relationship with funds from the sale of Tragically Hip, Twisted, going specifically to the Gord Downie Fund for Brain Cancer Research. The whole idea behind putting the book together was as a tribute to the Hip; to be able to fundraise through the book in this way seems to fit together with that. Aside from these donations being in honour of the band, cancer has been a major actor in my life and my family’s story. I imagine a lot of people would say that, but I feel it acutely. I lost my mother to cancer when I was a child. My father, as a lung surgeon, spent his career fighting cancer, and my brothers and I had the opportunity create a visiting professorship at the Ottawa Hospital in his name, to bring cutting edge research in the field to my father’s old department. In addition, one of my brothers is a neurosurgeon, continuing the idea of cancer as a personal family adversary.
On a lighter note, today, Tragically Hip, Twisted became Amazon’s #1 bestselling Canadian short story collection. Anytime you can lead a list containing Margaret Atwood, Alice Munro, David Bezmogis and Lucy Maud Montgomery, you’ll take it. (Bestseller-page image below the Sunnybrook letter).