Writer Susan Orlean praises the book. "No writer is as humane, insightful, and clear-eyed as Michael Harris. His journey into the rabbit hole of consumer desire is one we all need to follow, and he makes it a joy along the way."
Michael Harris's previous books—Solitude and The End of Absence—were both national bestsellers and are published in a dozen languages. He has won the Governor General’s Literary Award and his books have been nominated for the RBC Taylor Prize, the BC National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction, the Chautauqua Prize, and the CBC Bookie Award. Michael also writes the tech podcast Command Line Heroes, which has been downloaded millions of times and was honoured at both the Webby Awards and the Shorty Awards. Michael’s essays on media, the arts, and civil liberties, appear in Esquire, The Washington Post, Wired, Salon, The Globe and Mail, and dozens of other publications. He is currently a faculty member in the Literary Journalism program at the Banff Centre. Michael Harris lives with his husband, Kenny Park, in Vancouver, BC.
Congrats on your third book, Michael! All We Want is such a timely read, focusing on how we might imagine alternatives to consumer culture, at a point in history when the planet is threatened by our rapacious desire …
We kick off our conversation with this year’s English-language Governor General’s Award winners in conversation with Richard Harrison. His collection On Not Losing My Father’s Ashes in the Flood (Buckrider Books/Wolsak and Wynn) is the 2017 GG's winner for English-language poetry.
Of the collection, the jury said, "In these moving poems about the father/son relationship set against the Alberta flood of 2013, Richard Harrison’s intimate yet open voice deftly explores subjects as wide-ranging as childhood, middle-age anxiety, dementia and loss with wonder, humour and resilience."
Trevor Corkum: How did this particular collection come to be?
Richard Harrison: This book arrived in stages. I started with the idea that I’d write a book of poetry with poems themselves as the launching points, in much the same way as I wrote Hero o …
On the heels of Michael Harris’s The End of Absence comes Solitude, an exploration of what it means to be alone in a world constantly demanding our attention. We’re in conversation with Michael this week on The Chat.
Grant Munroe, writing in The Globe and Mail, calls Solitude “an insightful, lively meditation on why this increasingly scarce component of our lives should be preserved.” Douglas Coupland says, "I came away from this book a better human being. Michael Harris's take on existence is calm, unique and makes one's soul feel good, yet never once does he rely on feel-good techniques."
Michael Harris is the author of The End of Absence, which won the Governor General's Literary Award and became a national bestseller. He writes about media, civil liberties, and the arts for dozens of publications, including The Washington Post, Wired, Salon, The Huffington Post and The Globe and Mail. His work has been a finalist for the RBC Taylor Prize, the BC National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction, the Chautauqua Prize, the CBC Bookie Awards and severa …