“Writing is like driving a car at night: you never see further than your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.” —E. L. Doctorow
106 literary journals and anthologies have published Mitchell Toews’ fiction since 2015. He is a three-time Pushcart Prize nominee, a finalist in The Writers’ Union of Canada’s 2021 Short Prose Competition for Emerging Writers, on the shortlist for the 2022 J.F. Powers Prize for Short Fiction, and his creative nonfiction, “The Mighty Hartski” was longlisted for the 2022 Canada-wide CNF contest sponsored by Humber Literary Review/Creative Nonfiction Collective Society (CNFC). Also, made lists (long and short) in several PULP Literature contests (Bumblebees & Ravens).
Mitch’s collection of short stories, “Pinching Zwieback” is slated to arrive in the spring of 2023. From At Bay Press, Winnipeg. Watch this space and facebook.com/mitch.toews for news on this fiction collection!
“Unique and engaging!”—all of Mitch’s hundreds of cousins
Mitchell Toews lives and writes lakeside in Manitoba. His short fiction and creative nonfiction appears in print and online, in places near and far. You may follow him on the trails or out on the water or ice, or more conveniently here at Mitchellaneous.com, or on Twitter or Facebook.
Mitch is an emerging writer. A lifelong love of books and storytelling put him on this path long ago and his career in advertising and communications provided writing basics and a feel for the reality of writing: deadlines, criticism, and publishing. Formal instruction has come from university and public library Writers in Residence like Carolyn Gray, Lauren Carter, Lindsay Wong, Katherena Vermette, Duncan Mercredi, Frances Koncan, Ariel Gordon, and Anna Leventhal. He is also active with the Manitoba Writers’ Guild and its many programs. Less formal, but highly rewarding and inspiring is his critique circle which features a strong and diverse group of writers.
Member: Manitoba Writers’ Guild, The Writers’ Union of Canada
What’s bright in the headlights these days?
In addition to editing “Pinching Zwieback,”—20 stories in all—I’m also full-up with piles of regular stuff: short stories, CNF, blog posts, readings, critique circles, courses, and consultations — the full pot of writer’s soup.
My debut novel MS, ‘Mulholland and Hardbar’ is now many times edited, including the recent expert evaluation of author Armin Wiebe, courtesy of The Writers’ Union of Canada and their Mentorship Microgrants program, it is a few beta readers away from being ready to be queried.
It’s a gritty coming-of-age story driven by its ambiguous characters. “A story wound tight as a noose.“
How would I describe it as a movie? I’d say, ‘Fargo, with Mennonite accents…‘ (As a book? Shades of ‘On the Road,’ the woodsy flavour of ‘Never Cry Wolf,’ a youthful protagonist in the manner of ‘The Nick Adams Stories,’ the desire, temptation, and surrender of ‘Heart of Darkness.’
—Mitchell Toews, Jessica Lake