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Elisabeth Harvor grew up on the east coast, in the Kennebecasis River Valley, the daughter of Danish immigrant artisans who made pottery by hand, using methods going back thousands of years. Her parents had lived most of their lives in cities (in northern Europe) and fell completely in love with the freedom and vastness of Canada. They were also attracted to the romantic hardship of the life they hoped to lead so far out in the country: no running water, no electricity, no paved roads, no doctor.
After leaving home at seventeen, Elisabeth Harvor married young, lived in many Canadian cities and also lived in Europe for two years, but for a more evocative description of her work, her books, her reviews, and her childhood, visit her web site at www.elisabeth-harvor.com
Harvor's fiction and poetry have appeared in Arc, Event, The New Quarterly, The New Yorker, The Malahat Review, PRISM international, The Hudson Review, and The American Voice as well as in quite a number of other periodicals. Some of these stories and poems have subsequently been selected for poetry anthologies as well as for the Best Canadian Stories and Best American Short Stories anthologies.
Her stories have also been anthologized in collections published in Canada, the US, Mexico, and Europe, and her own story collections are Our Lady of All the Distances, If Only We Could Drive Like This Forever, and Let Me Be the One, named one of the ten best books of the year by The Toronto Star and The Saint John Telegraph Journal and, after its distribution in the US, one of the best books of 1997 for the Librarians' Choice Awards in Cleveland, Ohio. Let Me Be the One was also a finalist for the Governor General's Award.
She has also won many awards for her fiction and poetry. Fortress of Chairs, her first book of poems, was co-winner of the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award in 1993. Her second poetry book, The Long Cold Green Evenings of Spring, was a finalist for the Lowther Award in 1997, and her first novel, Excessive Joy Injures the Heart, was chosen one of the ten best books of the year by The Toronto Star in 2000. Her most recent novel, All Times Have Been Modern, was a finalist for the Ottawa Book Award. In 2000 she won the Alden Nowlan Award, in 2003 the Marian Engel Award, and in 2004 the Malahat Novella Prize for "Across Some Dark Avenue of Plot He Carried Her Body."
Elisabeth Harvor has also written essays on the work of Sylvia Plath, Doris Lessing, James Salter, Milan Kundera, Hanif Kureishi, Philip Roth, and many other writers for Our Generation Against Nuclear War, The Globe and Mail, The Toronto Star, The Gazette, Matrix, and a number of other periodicals. She has two sons and is currently living in Ottawa. A new book of poetry is slated for publication in 2010.
Elisabeth Harvor's works copyright © to the author.