Donald M. Anderson
Categories: Male Authors - Anglophone Authors - Authors of Non-Fiction - Miramichi River
Don Anderson, a resident of Miramichi, is a writer-adventurer. He spends many years living in, trying to understand, and exploring overland seven other Canadian provinces. He also visits the remaining two provinces and three northern territories. Don's overland explorations outside of Canada include most South American countries, eleven Asian countries, a large area of the European Union, eastern, central, and western parts of the Russian Federation, Australia's Outback, and a strip of the northern and southern U.S., as well as Alaska and Hawaii. Don brings all of these life experiences to his writing.
Don's father is Archie E. Anderson, a Canadian poet and writer of both fiction and non-fiction, whose works are published as the Archway collection, on legal deposit in both printed and electronic formats at Library and Archives Canada.
How has New Brunswick influenced your work?
Prior to living in New Brunswick, I visited the province as part of my pan-Canadian explorations.
Some of my good friends, who I met in other provinces, were born here. One of my uncles and aunts and two of my cousins lived in Chatham for several years as part of the R.C.A.F. community.
The small and quiet New Brunswick city where I now live has good, long winters, enabling me to concentrate on transcribing my adventure notes from here and away, so that I can create more books, (i.e. when I am not out shoveling snow off the front porch and path or talking to my neighbours and friends here.)
What is your favourite New Brunswick book, and why?
I honestly can't say. There are books about the province, set in the province, and mentioning the province. Each one has its own merits. These books are written by people from here and away. Some are sold on consignment at the local music store. Others are available at the three N.B. Public Library branches in town.
My first knowledge of New Brunswick in literature comes from a U.S. writer named Henry W. Longfellow. The story of Evangeline: A Tale of Acadie remains a lesson that is still unlearned today in our world of millions of refugees, displaced people, forced relocations, childhood detention, and concentration camps, along with our heritage of church/state child abductions and residential school acculturation centres in Canada.
What do you consider to be the highlight of your career so far?
I consider it a life, not a career. The highlight is every moment of it. If mine is not a fulfilling life, what is? And I do it all without monetary wealth or inheritance for more than thirty years. I get a great education in my youngest adult years and make the most of it throughout my life to date.
Writing is a reward in itself. I enjoy the work. I’m very hesitant to enter literary contests. I don’t want or need the fame. I’m not interested in making a potential financial fortune from writing.
Being unknown gives me immense freedom and unrestricted mobility as a writer and thinker. I can move around, talk to anyone, anywhere, casually without fame getting between us. I can learn and write more easily because I am only perceived as a friendly newcomer in town. Everyone I meet has to try to get to know me personally instead of approaching me as a famous person whose writing and ideas s/he may not like.
The reason I am [submitting my profile to the NB Author Portal] is so that my experiences, discoveries, findings, thoughts, and inspirations of both “home” and “away” can be more widely known and help to encourage others to get to know the realities of the “outside world”. This will help to immunize many readers from the myths and prejudices coming from not knowing, and from the aggressive ignorance that plagues our world.