I spent several years based in Mexico City as the correspondent in Latin America for The Globe and Mail, Canada's national newspaper. That was quite a while ago, but I still consider those times to be the most intense and memorable of my life -- not that the rest of my life has been all that dreary.
The opposite, really.
During subsequent years, I was the Globe's correspondent in sub-Saharan Africa, based in Harare, Zimbabwe. From 2007 to 2009, I was the Middle East correspondent for the Toronto Star, based in Jerusalem. I now live in Toronto.
I have written several books along the way, mainly fiction. They include:
-- Guerrilla Beach (Cormorant Books), a collection of short stories set in Latin America that was short-listed for the 1995 Trillium Award for the best book published that year in the Canadian province of Ontario;
-- A Fire on the Mountains (Knopf Canada), a memoir of travel in Latin America and Africa;
-- The Dark Virgin (HarperCollins Canada), a novel set in Mexico and also published in translation in Spain (Grijalbo) and Italy (Edizione Piemme);
-- The Empire of Yearning (HarperCollins Canada), a novel set during the Second Mexican Empire;
-- Swimming with Horses, a novel set partly in southern Ontario horse country and partly in apartheid-era South Africa. It is to be published in February, 2019, by Toronto's Dundurn Press.
I have won several Canadian journalism or literary prizes, including two National Newspaper Awards, a National Magazine Award for fiction, and the Roland Michener Award for Meritorious Public Service in Journalism.
I speak English as well as pretty good Spanish and write a biweekly column in Correo Canadiense, Canada's leading Spanish-language newspaper.
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