For this month, the Winnipeg River Arts Council features writer Ginette McMullen.
At present, she lives in St. Georges, and she has lived there most of her life. She attended elementary school in St. Georges and went to high school in Powerview. She is employed by Interlake-Eastman Regional Health Authority, working in Support Services.
McMullen writes mostly short stories: creative nonfiction and fiction. She is also working on a book. She is intrigued by people’s stories, present or past. Their courage inspires and motivates her to sit down and put pen to paper. She likes to record their struggles and trauma, and reflect on the ways humans of all ages overcome injustice.
Living in St. George, near the shores of the Winnipeg River, she is surrounded by nature. This love of the outdoors also feeds her passion for creating prose. Her grandsons are another inspiration. She said, “Their honesty, love and laughter give me energy for life.”
For as long as she can remember, she has been interested in writing and telling stories. From an early age, she had plenty of access to books. Her mother encouraged everyone in her family to read and made books a big part of her life. In high school, she had teachers who were passionate about writing. She said, “They fueled me to learn all I could.”
McMullen has attended writing classes and workshops instructed by local author Donna Besel. Although she sometimes struggles to identify herself as a “serious writer,” she has shared and read her stories to fellow students in these classes and workshop settings. She has also submitted short stories the CBC Creative Nonfiction Contest.
She likes to remind herself that her experiences and her commitment to writing are closely connected. One of her favourite quotes is: “Don’t shelf your passion for life, it is life.”