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culture

Historicist: Learning the Writer’s Craft

Before finding fame for his tales of the supernatural, a young Algernon Blackwood struggled to find success in Toronto.

Algernon Blackwood in 1924. The Evening Independent (St. Petersburg, Florida). April 12, 1924.

In 1887, there was little to suggest that Algernon Blackwood would one day become one of England’s premier writers of horror and supernatural fiction. His father, Sir Arthur Blackwood, held the prestigious position of Under-Secretary of the British Post Office, and was well connected across the Empire, particularly in temperance and religious circles; naturally, Sir Arthur had hoped that 18-year-old Algernon would demonstrate an aptitude for school or business. Algernon, however, was a mediocre student and, after floundering in English schools, had spent the previous year studying in Germany, where his father had hoped he might flourish under greater discipline. Still lacking a direction in life, Algernon suggested to his father that he might pursue a career in farming. Recognizing that greater agricultural opportunities were available in Canada than in England, Sir Arthur took Algernon on a trip to Canada, a trip which would eventually lead to Algernon Blackwood’s earliest forays into public writing.

Keep reading: Historicist: Learning the Writer’s Craft

news

Weekend Newsstand: January 31, 2015

As of January 24, 56 people have died of the flu in Toronto alone. If you have a weak immune system, stay away from... people. All of them. Just to be safe. In the news: someone has successfully scaled a frozen portion of Niagara Falls, community and home health-care workers are on strike, and 22 more GO stations will have Wi-Fi on Monday.

matt newsstand gull

Keep reading: Weekend Newsstand: January 31, 2015

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Extra, Extra: Cold Weather, Student Election Controversy, and City Hall Security Costs

Every weekday’s end, we collect just about everything you ought to care about or ought not to miss.