Hello, and welcome to my website!
I write … books, essays, memoirs, magazine articles, speeches, and I also help others with their writing. Please have a good look around my website – and don’t forget the photo gallery. Lots to read, and lots to look at. Thanks for stopping by.
In Bookstores Now
Available from Amazon.ca, Nimbus.ca, and independent bookstores.
Click HERE to see a full list of my books on Amazon.ca.
Somebeachsomewhere: The Harness Racing Legend from a One-Horse Stable
A comprehensive, fully illustrated biography of Nova Scotia’s Somebeachsomewhere, the greatest standardbred pacer of all time, from the award-winning author of Year of the Horse.
It’s November 2006 and Brent MacGrath, a car salesman from Nova Scotia, has just had his first glimpse of a gorgeous yearling at the Lexington Yearling Sale—and his heart skips a beat. He takes another look. Even this young, the bay stallion has size and “presence.” Against all odds, and with limited funds, MacGrath makes a successful bid for the colt.
Somebeachsomewhere: The Harness Racing Legend from a One-Horse Stable is a work of narrative non-fiction that follows the life and career of the Ohio-born, Canadian-sired superstar pacer known as “Beach” who belonged to a syndicate of six owners from Canada’s East Coast. From a relatively humble lineage, Somebeachsomewhere turned out to be a horse of a lifetime: a world-champion Hall of Famer, smashing records and setting a single-season earning record as a three-year-old. Many consider Beach, who died unexpectedly in 2018, the greatest pacer and Standardbred sire of all time. Canadian and American racing fans loved the friendly stallion with “an extra gear,” and threw “Beach Parties” whenever he raced.
This is the first-ever complete, generously illustrated account of “the Beach,” a horse who captivated the world with his speed, courage and near-flawless gait. It is also a story of improbabilities and magic, featuring dozens of interviews with top American and Canadian horsemen and women, the owners of Empire Stallions in Avenel, Australia, and harness racing industry professionals.
Memoir: Conversations and Craft
Memoir: Conversations and Craft is intended for any reader who is fascinated by personal life stories that demand to be read, refuse to be forgotten. Whether you are an emerging or experienced writer, this reflection on writing can galvanize you.
Included in this celebration of memoir are interviews with best-selling memoirists and top fiction writers: Lawrence Hill, Plum Johnson, Linden MacIntyre, Edmund Metatawabin, Donna Morrissey, Claire Mowat, and Diane Schoemperlen. All speak with candour, humour, and compassion about their journey to memoir.
“For everyone who has ever whispered, ‘I have a story to tell,’ this is the book you’ve been waiting for. It’s an imaginative how-to-write-a-memoir from a pro. Great reading. Terrific tips.”
—Sally Armstrong, journalist and author of The Nine Lives of Charlotte Taylor
“Marjorie’s conversations with the likes of Lawrence Hill, Claire Mowat, Linden MacIntyre and many more are profoundly insightful and fascinating. They inspired and enlightened me in so many ways. She is a master interviewer, writer, conversationalist and thinker and spending time with her on these pages is pure joy.”
—James Mullinger, Editor-in-Chief, The Maritime Edit
Year of the Horse
Dynamic and lyrical, Marjorie Simmins’ new non-fiction book, Year of the Horse is about her life with horses on the East and West Coasts of Canada. Published in 2016, by Pottersfield Press, Year of the Horse is a true story of grit, determination and luck.
“This is a remarkable tale about a woman who falls hard from horses, but never ceases to fall for horses. The result is an illuminating chronicle of the horse-human bond.” Lawrence Scanlan, author of Wild About Horses.
Award-winning writer and journalist, Marjorie Simmins tells this story of love and resistance with humour and candour. Published in 2014, also with Pottersfield Press, Coastal Lives was Marjorie Simmins’ first book.
“Simmins is a terrific writer with a terrific tale to tell. It’s the urgency and passion of her prose that makes her memoir such gripping reading. At the heart of her story is the unfolding of an extraordinary love affair between her on the Pacific Coast and, 4000 miles east on the Atlantic, fellow writer Silver Donald Cameron.”
— Harry Bruce, author and journalist