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Monday, January 14, 2019

The 'Curiosity Behind the Character'

“For me, when I 'discover' a story, there is a feeling of buoyancy and clarity, perhaps similar to early morning out on a prairie highway, when darkness lifts and reveals the outline of farmhouses and copses of trees in the distance.” – David Bergen

Born in British Columbia on this date in 1957, Bergen grew up in Manitoba, studied Creative Communication at a Mennonite Bible College there and taught both high school English and creative writing before taking a stab at writing fiction himself.  He actually started thinking about writing before he began his teaching career.  At the age of twenty, having published nothing and having had little guidance in my reading, I decided that I wanted to write,” he said. 
 Starting with short stories (his first efforts appeared in the 1980s), he turned to novels in the mid-‘90s.  His debut novel, A Year of Lesser in 1996, was both a New York Times Notable Book and winner of the McNally Robinson Book of the Year Award.  It also set him on a writing path that has won him some two-dozen writing awards for his 8 novels (to date) and 1 short story collection.  His most recent novel, Stranger, was published in 2016.   
                              “What fascinates me as a writer is the stuff underneath,” Bergen said.   “To me, what drives a novel is the curiosity behind the character and the depths that you want to find in that character.”

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