Saturday, June 11, 2016

Congratulations On Everything reviewed in The Globe & Mail

"These are believable creations. They speak and fail and contradict themselves with the regular inelegance of real people. The day-to-day pleasures and pains of the service industry are also rendered with fine-tuned realism, an ear for the strange within the mundane. Whitlock is a very smooth, competent stylist, in an understated way. There’s no flash or bang here: His characters propel the action, calling attention to narrative style only with metaphor and image – which are always arresting, always right."

The whole thing here.

Thursday, June 09, 2016

Service Industry Hell

Dear Former Bartenders, Waiters, and Cooks:

I am in need of funny, ridiculous, and/or disturbing true service industry stories for a thing I am doing next month for Open Book. Tales of bad bosses, "eccentric" customers, hellish shifts, exploding kegs, etc. What are some moments you'll never forget, no matter how hard you try?

They need to be short - 100 to 200 words, max. Just the gist. Unless you say otherwise, they'll be anonymous. Send as many as you like.

Please email them to [my first and last name, all one word] AT gmail dot com.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

"All Those Sexy Things"

I got interviewed by Canadian Notes & Queries:
Congratulations On Everything felt like a very different book while I was writing it, and I think it is, though now that I look at it as a finished thing, I can see a lot of similarities – people in bad relationships, people who mistake passivity for integrity, people who pursue dreams they are maybe not suited to achieve. All those sexy things.


Friday, May 13, 2016

"Superstition" is the way at the launch of Congratulations On Everything, May 3.

The band kills it. As does guest singer Alex Lukashevky. I try to keep up on drums.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Swear to God...

... I have things to post here, and will do so soon.

In the meantime, have I mentioned I make most of my bad jokes on Twitter now?


Sunday, November 30, 2014

Philip Larkin, the loveable, hateful old bastard

My review of Philip Larkin: Life, Art and Love by James Booth in the Toronto Star.

"[Larkin] has few rivals when it comes to conjuring joyful or heart-crushing beauty out of utterly commonplace situations and none in the realm of transforming disappointment into something both hilarious and transcendent."

Read the whole thing here.