Interview with David Halliday

What are your first memories of story telling?
This is before television. Even radio was unavailable in many parts of Prince Edward Island. My grandfather, after a long day farming would sit in the kitchen regaling everyone with his stories about different characters he had met, or who worked on the neighbouring farms, who worked at the nearby mill, or whom he met while visiting town. He had an Irish lilt and his stories would wander off onto a multitude of tangents but always he would return to the nub of his story. It wasn't just the interesting characters that coloured his stories but the lilt and music in his voice. It was like listening to a lullaby.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
In my early years I did some book tours. And readings. Posters of my work appeared on subway walls. But none of it sold much. If you are an artist, writer, painter, poet, any of the solitary arts and you're hoping to make a career then go into banking. There are some who enjoy doing readings. I've done a few. Hated it. But that's not to say some have not advanced their careers, or at least their reputations by doing such readings. Margaret Attwood was like a rock star in the 70s. Robert Priest was very good. But most readings are like listening to someone who is constipated and on the can. I did some television and radio interviews as well and perhaps with practice I might have become good at it. Leonard Cohen was and is wonderful at these.
Describe your desk
My desk is a mess. There are popcorn wraps, knives, glue sticks, socks, (a loaded gun I keep in the drawer), an assortment of letters that I"m supposed to respond to. Most of these are bills. I used to keep a collection of rejections but the pile got to large and one day they fell over and almost killed my cat.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in downtown Toronto until I was about 6 years old. Then we moved to Etobicoke (Islington), a suburb in the west end of the city. At the time it was fairly remote from downtown. (This was before the Bloor subway.) The area was a mix of peoples, Irish, Poles, Italians, Slovaks. There were no people of color. The only brown people I ever saw before I was about 14 years old, were Sikh students at the University of Toronto. Most of my friends were working class, 1st or 2nd generation immigrants. It was a great education.
When did you first start writing?
I was about 5 years old when my mother gave me a blank book. She told me to write stories. I did. If I didn't know a word I would draw it, or cut it out of magazines and stick it in my book. And I had a huge dictionary. I don't know what happened to that book or others that I wrote. Perhaps to an adult they wouldn't have made any sense. But they were like that box that the refrigerator comes in. It becomes your castle, your tunnel, your cape of invisibility.
What's the story behind your latest book?
The book I am working on is a collection of interwoven novelettes. Each novelette has an independent quality about it, 'coming of age', 'comedy', 'romance', 'mystery'. But they are all part of a large story. Maybe its my version of the Canterbury Tales. About 2 decades ago I started reading Latin American writers. What I loved about their writing was that they did not seem to be handcuffed by structure. They were not writing novels to be studied in high school. Their books were fun.
Published 2016-08-04.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Rise of the Past
You set the price! Words: 2,180. Language: English. Published: February 10, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Contemporary Poetry
Every morning is a confirmation that we live in the myth of the day. Our sun has created the illusion that times passes in units. The President sleeps restlessly. His wife weeps in her dreams. Someone is at the door. These poems are meant to unsettle.
The Bankers Are Swinging From The Crucifix
You set the price! Words: 2,110. Language: English. Published: March 8, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Canadian Poetry
Old men pushing walkers. Standing in liquor store lines. Walking dogs. Waiting in malls for the day to end. With young men's eyes looking at young women. Standing in front of urinals. No longer looking for answers. Questioning the questions. Scribbling down poems. On the way to Windsor.
OPEN 24hrs
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 99,930. Language: English. Published: December 14, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Urban, Fiction » Literature » Literary
It was a world. Drifting through the cosmos. Laughter. Spilling pills. Love and indigestion. The plaza. Before the malls. Open 24 hrs. For heart break. And Peggy Lee's laconic sad voice. Everyone wondered what it meant. Until they heard the sound. Of their stomach's grumbling. And the hob nailed boots. The cracking sound of bone. Against rock. Everything was alive. For a while.
David Halliday's The Invisible Man
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 251,230. Language: English. Published: November 21, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » General
Children have nightmares. They wake up in a sweat and cry out for their mothers. A village can have nightmares too. The villagers wake up and cry out for each other. These stories are about that nightmare.
The Sammy Kelly Story
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 23,420. Language: English. Published: November 14, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Coming of age
The last book in The Invisible Man series. A young boy is dealing with his mother's death, and a father who hasn't come to grips with his own grief. And a girl who doesn't see him. And in the background, a serial killer who is stalking her.
The Assassination of a Citizen
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 20,710. Language: English. Published: November 13, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » General
Murder investigation. Bodies. Too many meds. Too many moments in the middle of the night where time takes its vengeance. Things go wrong. I wish it had never started. Its all mixed up inside me. Don't tell me that love will save me. I know what hell feels like. Sam Kelly's eyes fading in my thoughts. All those pretty girls will never have daughters of their own.
The Exhibition
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 16,030. Language: English. Published: November 11, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » General
The Exhibition is a story written like an Brueghel painting. Time turns on itself. Events are repeated and altered. At the core of the story is an exhibition of paintings. The paintings tell the story of the moments before, after, and surrounding the assassination of John Kennedy. And amongst the crowd at the exhibition is a serial killer.
The Margaret Kelly Story
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 31,910. Language: English. Published: November 5, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » General
Margaret Kelly is dead. But she can't help eavesdropping on her husband's life. He's a retired cop brought out for one last case. Margaret fears for Sam and for their son. She's knows that something is happening. She doesn't know what, or doesn't want to know. And then somewhere in her story she starts to disappear.
The Adventures of the Invisible Man
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 25,630. Language: English. Published: November 4, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Crime
Life was unfair. Thats what everyone thought. A man was going mad. We all know someone like that. A son has lost his mother, a husband his wife. The routine of tragedy. A priest was having a spiritual crisis. A kid thought God was out to get him. A marriage breaks up. That's what the Six Points area was like. And then there was somethin
A Boy's World
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 35,220. Language: English. Published: October 31, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Thriller & Suspense
Sometimes I can’t remember what mom looks like. Sometimes all I can remember is her smile. Mom has only been dead a year and her face is already beginning to fade. I have to look at the pictures dad keeps on the mantle. They too are beginning to fade. There must be something wrong with me that I can’t remember mom. Maybe I didn’t love her enough.
The Harry Loom Story
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 11,530. Language: English. Published: October 29, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Literature » Literary
Harry Loom's life is falling apart. And yet he couldn't see that it wasn't just his life. It was as if the whole community in the sleepy suburban neighbourhood had begun to implode. Time had caught up to everyone. And it was all a dream. Or seemed so.
A Tour Through A Mad Man’s Days
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 13,280. Language: English. Published: October 26, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Urban
A mad man walks through his afternoon recalling memories from a past he had long forgotten. A young kid joins him. The kid believes that God is going to assassinate him. The two friends attempt to rediscover the mad man's lost world. And then the mad man discovers his mission in life. He will save the kid from God.
Life at the Rectory
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 7,520. Language: English. Published: October 23, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Literature » Literary
A parish priest is dealing with several lives at crisis, the young boy becoming a hoodlum, another young boy who feels he is fated to die, the Parish pastor who wonders if he is suited for the Church, a woman who has fallen in love with him, and his own soul.
Several Incidents in Mackenzie Philip’s Afternoons
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 9,270. Language: English. Published: October 20, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Thriller & Suspense
Mackenzie Philips had to deal with all the trials of youth, bullies, school, parents who don't understand him. And God. Who Mackenzie believes is out to get him. God wants revenge. Because Mackenzie has committed a terrible crime. He's killed someone. He's killed two someones.
The Mad Man
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 6,610. Language: English. Published: September 23, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Urban
The Mad Man is a novelette, Part of a multi series of books under the banner THE INVISIBLE MAN. Having returned from up north, Charlie Benes hands out with his old friends. Discussing life, his new bride, the virtues of cannibalism. And he is going mad.
A Boy’s Life
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 8,350. Language: English. Published: September 1, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Coming of age
A Boy's Life is a novelette, Part of a multi series of books under the banner THE INVISIBLE MAN. Mackenzie Philips is a young boy dealing with school, bullies, girls, and boredom. But Mackenzie harbours a terrible secret, one that he cannot share. Threatened by bigger boys, teachers, and the police, Mackenzie is afraid of only one person... God.
Several Incidents in Frank Craven's Week
Series: The Invisible Man. You set the price! Words: 8,050. Language: English. Published: August 28, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Literature » Literary
Several Incidents in Frank Craven's Week is a novelette, Part of a multi series of books under the banner THE INVISIBLE MAN. A college teacher in mid life starts over with a new wife and child. A friend from childhood is returning to town with a surprise announcement. Old friends meet again. And a serial killer is checking out power saws in the local hardware store.
The Priesthood
Series: The Invisible Man, Book 5. You set the price! Words: 5,000. Language: English. Published: August 8, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Psychological thriller
The Priesthood is a novelette, Part of a multi series of books under the banner THE INVISIBLE MAN. A middle aged priest, troubled and uncompromising has been moved from parish to parish. In administering to his flock he meets a young woman who has recently lost both her son and her husband in a motor vehicle accident. Things become complicated between them. And then she is attacked.
Domestic Bliss
Series: The Invisible Man, Book 4. You set the price! Words: 9,020. Language: English. Published: August 6, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Women's fiction » General
Domestic Bliss is a novelette, Part of a multi series of books under the banner THE INVISIBLE MAN. A marriage on the edge. An older husband, a young wife, a small child. Dreams that have turned into statistics. A life where the bloom is gone. How will things be resolved. And then she was assaulted.
Lip Gloss and Movie Making
Series: The Invisible Man, Book 3. You set the price! Words: 7,530. Language: English. Published: August 4, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » General
Lip Gloss and Movie Making is a novelette, Part of a multi series of books under the banner THE INVISIBLE MAN. A young feisty girl is going through teenage life in the suburbs. She has a supportive boyfriend, loving parents, and unknown to her, a serial killer.
The Writer as a Man
Series: The Invisible Man, Book 2. You set the price! Words: 9,860. Language: English. Published: August 4, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Literature » Literary
The Writer as a Man is a novelette, Part of a multi series of books under the banner THE INVISIBLE MAN. A man is lost. Suspended in possibility. Waiting. For his life to begin. He has become a writer. Of sorts. Waiting for his mother to pass on and then pass on his endowment. But life does not wait.
The Trailer
Series: The Invisible Man, Book 1. You set the price! Words: 6,580. Language: English. Published: August 2, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Literary collections » Canadian
The Trailer is a novelette, Part of a multi series of books under the banner THE INVISIBLE MAN. This story concerns a retired cop who now works as a crossing guard and has become the object of two students' school assignment. They want to make a movie about him. He is not enthusiastic but his dead wife who talks to him everyday is.
Hit and Run
You set the price! Words: 57,940. Language: English. Published: June 30, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Amateur sleuth
Detective Sam Kelly was investigating a murder. And then there were all the other crimes that no one knew were happening. Drug dealers, pedophiles, marital abuse. Don't turn over that rock. There are things underneath crawling.
Thoughts On A Stormy Night
You set the price! Words: 1,940. Language: English. Published: March 16, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Canadian Poetry
Anger and humor. Burning like a furnace in my head. The year my mother died. Poems from my tumor.
Diary of a White Virgin
You set the price! Words: 1,230. Language: English. Published: July 3, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Canadian Poetry, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Poetry
Eisenhouer was gone. Kennedy was now. Wrestling was real. The Leafs were winning Stanley Cups. Television was a series of comedies about white kids in the suburbs with skin problems. No one was raped. No one knew what rape was. Or killing. Or starvation. Except my father. And he didn't talk about the War. .
My Hair Is On Fire
You set the price! Words: 4,370. Language: Canadian English. Published: April 1, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Canadian Poetry, Fiction » Poetry » American poetry
When I was twenty my hair was down my back. Orange and dusty. I felt like a god. Beautiful and outrageously vain. Standing in the Kipling Station. I could have stood there forever. When I stepped on the train I was 40 and everything picked up speed. The last decade has been like a long weekend. My eyes are watering. And my hair is on fire.
Sleeping Beauty
Price: $3.49 USD. Words: 29,010. Language: English. Published: January 15, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General
In Sleeping Beauty, winner of the 2004 Independent Publisher Award for Best Horror and winner of the 2004 Electronic Publishers Award for Best Horror, a young woman boards an airplane for an unknown destination and finds herself in a quaint village where each citizen has his own story to tell. A horrifying mystery is revealed to the young woman. Soon she discovers that the only escape from the village is murder - her own.
Calendar Girls
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 3,900. Language: English. Published: August 12, 2011. Categories: Nonfiction » Biography » Autobiographies & Memoirs
Each month has a pic. Each pic has a story. Some of the stories are true. Some of the stories were found on Wednesday afternoons.
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 120. Language: English. Published: July 26, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Canadian Poetry
My grandfather used to sneak out during the day to a brick wall that existed between he and his farming neighbour. Under a rock he would find the latest pulp novel. In that way my grandfather and his friend would exchange books, reading them in those lazy afternoons when it was too hot to work in the fields. I have dedicated these poems to those pulp novels.
The Mystery of Edwin Drood
Price: Free! Words: 2,280. Language: English. Published: July 5, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » General
The last hours of a drug dealer as he begins to face the reality of the world that he has created.
The Planet Jack: Thoughts On Here
You set the price! Words: 2,180. Language: English. Published: February 5, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Canadian Poetry, Fiction » Graphic novels & comics » General
A planet spins on the edge of our solar system. It is remembered in folklore. As the planet X, slipping near the earth on its way passed the sun. Bringing death and destruction. It is the apocalypse. The end of days. Its real name is Jack
The Black Bird
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 12,400. Language: English. Published: January 19, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Plays & Screenplays » American
Bogart. Actor. Celebrity. Husband. As Sam Spade. In the movie The Maltese Falcon. Baring of a soul. Stripping down of a life. Reaching beyond the point of death. To Bogart as a boy. Steeped in mythic reality. Originally published in 1982 by The Porcupine's Quill. Finalist in the 2004 Eppie Awards for Poetry.
Hard Brush Soft Paint
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 3,560. Language: English. Published: January 5, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Canadian Poetry
A young painter finds passion, pain, love, and despair in gesso and canvas.
Women Gone Mad Part 2
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 10,680. Language: English. Published: January 4, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Literature » Plays & Screenplays
Unravelling. Breaking down. The end of the world. Looking over the edge. Women gone mad.Again.
Women Gone Mad Part 1
Price: Free! Words: 9,870. Language: English. Published: December 30, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Literature » Plays & Screenplays
Unravelling. Breaking down. The end of the world. Looking over the edge. Women gone mad.
The Moron
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 40,600. Language: English. Published: December 28, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Plays & Screenplays » American
A life of ambition leads a great man to destroy everything around him.
The Box by Matthew Chambers
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 16,980. Language: English. Published: December 27, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Urban
I met Matthew Chambers in a cafe in a small village of Hamme, Belgium. We talked on several occasions and always I had the impression that he was a man who was being pursued. I knew not by whom. And then one day he was not at the cafe at our accustomed time. Weeks passed. No Matthew. And then one morning this manuscript appeared on my door step.
Price: Free! Words: 6,830. Language: English. Published: December 21, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Adventure » General
Two factions of children in separate schools find themselves at odds. One is humiliated but rises to take vengeance on the other. It was war. And the children loved it.
The Death of Lou Grant
Price: $1.95 USD. Words: 31,610. Language: English. Published: December 21, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » General
A man is dying in his backyard of a heart attack. He begins to recall his life. Except that it is not his life. It is the life of a fictional character from a popular television situation comedy. And he can't...
Church Street Is Burning
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 5,230. Language: English. Published: October 29, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Coming of age
A finalist in the 2003 Eppie Best Poetry Collection, Church Street Is Burning, in illustrations, short stories, and poems, tells the story of the poet as a young man. Lost. Abandoned by the woman he loved. Bewitched by the street he lives on. Forgotten by his God. Searching for some rational order in a world fallen on its side. And leaking.
Homicide: Now and Then
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 4,320. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Contemporary Poetry
Death comes in the quiet of our thoughts. When we were looking the wrong way. At the moon being smothered by a cloud. It begins in panic. Thrashing out. We want to live. Something standing over us. Waiting for our last breath. Murder. Now and then.
Crowd Noises
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 2,280. Language: English. Published: October 23, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Canadian Poetry
Before I began to listen. In my younger days. I ranted. Invited into small spaces. Where my nose was rubbed in my words. Listened to my fellow poets. Bleed. Black. And wondered if I heard an echo. Or was everyone crazy. These were the Crowd Noises.
The Saints of Jazz
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 3,800. Language: English. Published: October 18, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Biography
They began their careers in small clubs. And cat houses. In choirs. And minstrel shows. They were applauded. Made famous. At times they were loved. They made a lot of money and spent it. On booze. On drugs. On men. And became famous. Some died in small rooms without family. Some in the arms of their children. They were all different. They were the Saints of Jazz. And they loved to sing.